KATHMANDU, Sept 10: I usually loathed playing with children, especially infants and toddlers. Growing up, I didn’t mingle much with kids. As I recall my salad days, I attribute small age gap between my siblings to be the primary cause of my distant attachment with children.
Another reason perhaps was children’s often-soiled clothes, chaotic appearance and corresponding care growing-ups required. Two years apart each, my younger sister and brother, I can’t retrieve any fond memories of them crawling, dawdling, crying and screaming. I don’t even reminisce any similar incident in the neighborhood that I lived.
During my high school years, my parents’ unwavering support and encouragement yet within stringently disciplined milieu confined me and my siblings at home and we would rarely get glimpses of mischiefs and plays of neighborhood munchkins.
High school was over and to the unsurprisingly utter happiness of my parents, I passed SLC with flying colors. I had crossed the Iron Gate and with lofty ambitions, beautiful dreams and umpteen new challenges, I sailed to a new city for higher studies. Since then life has rather received company of upper age group.
Until recently, I didn’t uncover that I was missing a lot of priceless moments in life, thanks to my aversion to children. Last year, my younger sister gave birth to twin daughters, privileged to be the first grandchildren of my parents.
I was overseas when they were growing up. I planned to visit Nepal just to see them while they’re still toddlers and my happiness knew no bounds when I saw them.
Knowing that they’re your own and seeing a hint of your own countenance only made me shed tears, but out of sheer happiness. I held them despite their little resentment; the little angels perhaps were perturbed by a stranger’s reception. Their mom pointed to me and said “Your mama (maternal uncle) is here” as they unlooked me as if I was going to arrest them.
I spent a whole month in company of my twin nieces. It took me an entire four weeks of very closely-knit company to observe who’s who. Just being around lily-white kids whose every move, gesture and action is pure and selfless is a world of fun, gratification and pleasantness.
The company and warmth of little angels not only entertains you but also helps you dig deeper into the basics of life. Seeing my sister so absorbed 24/7 in the care and nurturing of my two nieces where sense of urgency, availability of resources and impeccability of execution is highly imperative, I can only imagine how tough last 19 months has been to her.
As I reflect on, similar and more others imaginary visuals of my childhood heydays feed me. Often we read and hear sagas of parents being forsaken, rejected, tortured and humiliated by impulsive and reckless behavior of children. May these heedless kids be empowered with conscience! Thank you my mom and my sister. God bless all moms!
The writer is a MBA graduate from George Mason University, USA.