The other day I got a call from my friend , she was inviting me for her son's birthday party who was going to turn 3 years. Generally I am total no-no for such invitations as elder friends and relatives have a very small role to play and I really wonder why in first place relatives and friends are called for such parties.
But this friend had called me after a long time and I really wished to meet her so I played smart by telling her that the specific day is bit difficult but I can surely drop in to wish your baby in advance. She agreed and there I was at her place to see her as a three year old's mother enjoying her motherhood completely.
I knew Sucheta before her marriage, a smart intelligent young girl, she was surely someone who had the entire ladder of success open for her, would be the first one to get into the skin of the subject, would plan the project completely and would come up with most creative, intelligent ideas to deal with problems. She married to her childhood friend and we all were happy for her.
When I entered the house, it looked so child centric, the hall had walls with her son's drawings scribbled on them, the sofa was kept aside and the centre of the hall was occupied by his toys. Sucheta had left her job and she was a full time mother, all she spoke was about her son and his naughty activities.
She was reading all comic books, trying to learn nursery rhymes and planning for outings which would be toy stations, kid's zones, aquariums or a zoo, in last three years she was only watching cartoons with her baby, in fact all the channels were only tuned to baby channels.
When I sat to eat food with her the sabji was without any spices, dal had sugar in it and rice was overcooked, as she claimed her son would eat from any plate any time so it was ideal to cook what he prefers as that would not lessen his intake anyway.
I was shocked at her over enthusiasm as a mother and clearly from her talk I knew the couple was taking the parenthood too seriously, and they thought that is the ideal way or rather that's parenting is all about.
I know we all have seen this happening around us..
We see child centered marriages all around and not couple centered marriages, in India it would be rather a sin to even speak about that.
The greatest gift that actually we can give our kids is the feeling-"mom and dad love each other", After kids are gone and begin their life, we as parents are actually going to show them what love is, how to handle conflicts, how to plan to pay bills, what forgiveness is, how to be responsible ..
As children have a front row seat in our marriage watching us all the time.
It does not do any favor to children if you put them in driver's seat and run the house as per their wishes.
When kids go in the outside world-as school, colleges they get confused as their teachers and professors do not behave like their parents, it hits them hard because they have been only made to feel privileged so far, and suddenly they are being treated not so special..
Begin preparing kids early for their life..and most importantly parents must understand that they are a couple first and then parents, once kids leave the house you are left with each other and I have seen couples suffering empty nest syndrome to a very great extent as they have forgotten to keep their life as 'couple' alive..
I am surely not denying the importance of parents presence , time and attention for the child but it is important that before you are great parents you have to be great lovers.
A daily conversation over a cup of coffee is a must, where try and avoid discussing your kids and talk about yourself, try and take out some time once in a week for each other , be a couple as you go on with your life. only when we are happy as a couple you have the recipe or formula to give something to the kids.
The best gift you can give your kids is your children should desire to have a marriage like yours when they grow up.