Such a stupid bus journey today. I know there are posters and securities saying loud and clear everyone to “Keep your belongings safe”. But if your time is bad and/or if your attention wanders off for even a second, I believe the worst can happen. I think I lost my self confidence and happiness on the bus. Because I had it on me when I got on the bus. But when I got off I couldn’t find it. I searched my backpack many times with no luck. As I was searching my pockets for the lost happiness, I found a crumpled piece of my confidence. Ooh ooh, I also found some trust issues too. But I have no idea how it got there because I never knew I had that in my possession. I still couldn’t find my happiness and self confidence. Where did it go?
Well, I guess now I’ll have to work twice as hard to regain my lost things.
Beginning with a simple question. Who are parents? If we go after the basic Wikipedia definition it will go like…
“A parent is a caregiver of the offspring in their own species. In humans, a parent is the caretaker of a child”.
But it’s so much more than that. The parents not just care for the kid but guides them through the stages of life. The confidence and the pride the parents show to their children are the key ingredients to their success. The parents become mirror to the children where the children can see themselves and feel proud or better themselves . The children also acts as mirrors reflecting their parents. How the parents treat the child is obvious in the child themselves. The support, the appreciation, the input a parent provides is reflected in the kids. Like a mirror. It reflects everything.
Just recently I saw a post on Instagram asking people to cheer not only for those who came out of toxic love relationships, but also for those who overcame a toxic parenting. That’s when I first heard about a thing called Toxic Parenting. I looked it up and found such an informative piece. ( God bless the internet ). This is what I found on the website of Healthline.
“When people discuss toxic parents they are typically describing parents who consistently behave in ways that cause guilt, fear, or obligation in their children. Their actions aren’t isolated events, but patterns of behaviour that negatively shape their child’s life.”
Whenever we talk about the things our parents do, there comes an additional clause saying ‘Parents are human being, and as human beings they make mistakes’. That’s where the problem begins. Not when they make a mistake, but when they fail to own it. When the parents make mistakes and hurt our emotions and cause us invisible damages, we expect them to admit their mistake and apologize for it. And if possible rectify it. But they never apologize nor do they admit their mistake. They are entitled by their Parenthood. They put all their wong doings in a big glass jar proudly and label it “For the Greater Good of My Kid”. Here I would like to add a clause and change it like this. “For the Greater Good of My Kid, I will Make Her Incompetent, Under Confident and Emotionally Unstable”
Toxic Parenting is not a scientifically defined term. It’s a feeling. And let’s just put it that way for the time being. Now the real question is how many of us are familiar with this toxic parenting. I believe even though we might not be well informed about, we would be familiar with the feeling. I am 100% sure that not all parents are Toxic. There are millions of examples of good parenting around us. But that doesn’t mean that Toxic Parenting is not a thing. It also doesn’t mean that what many of the kids feel isn’t real. Or that what they went through or are still going through is a result of their overthinking. Because for a long time, I justified my own parents saying it was for my own good. I believed them and I dreamed about myself as a capable and confident adult. I spend my days longing to hear a praise from them complimenting me on who I am. On the achievements I made. The waiting is still continued.
All through my life I was always controlled. Not by me. But by my Toxic Parent (let’s short it as TP). I was always told what to do and what not to do. And I obeyed. Because that’s what a child do to her parents. She obey them. I was told to study. I studied. I was told to read books provided by them. I did. When I became a teenager ‘unfortunately’ I started writing journal. You have no idea how much I enjoyed writing it. It invigorated me. I wrote about everything that came to mind. Years later I learnt I was exercising the theory of stream of consciousness for the first time, that too,without realising it.
Good things don’t last much I guess. TP found out my diaries and God, that was a hell of a day. I was criticized for wasting time on doing silly things and not using that for studying. I tried to stop writing journal but couldn’t since I couldn’t get over the thrill I felt while writing it. So I started using a simple plain notebook instead of a proper journal. I was hoping I could hide it among my notebooks and TP would never find out. I succeeded in it.
Two more years later, I tried writing poems and short stories. I was scared to show it to my parents, so I hid it among my not-so-important file category. First it was two poems, then it became four, eight, and then even more. I was in boarding school for a few years. There I participated in competitions and won prizes. I was happy with it because I knew TP would never know about me participating. I can easily hide certificates because as far as they are certificates TP would never check what was it for.
Then I came back home and went to school as a day scholar. And I stopped participating in competitions just like that. But soon enough TP found my not-so-important file and found the papers. I was shaking with fear. Thankfully TP didn’t shout at me or even beat me. Instead she took the papers, crushed and put it in the dustbin and calmly said with a smile on her face “you shouldn’t be doing this now. This is your age for studying. Focus only on that. This poetry, stories all will make you a silly romantic and you will fall in love with someone. Is that what you want in your life?” I shook my head and said No. Because obviously that’s the answer TP was looking for. I stopped hiding them in my files. I always carried them with me. I started writing a teenage novel when I was fifteen, it was definitely a childish one but still I gave my friends to read it. They were so excited about it because that’s the first time one of their friends attempt in writing a novel. They supported me like no other ever did. As soon as I finished writing I shared it with my friends. And as soon as they finished reading, I burnt it into ashes.
So those who have read my previous posts would know that I talked about a small cartoon frog I used to draw. Those who haven’t read the post and don’t have a clue what I am talking about , can read the post here. Today I am uploading a drawing of the frog which I did very recently. Two reasons. One a lady asked to see the Frog. Second, Ms. Frog also could use some exposure. So behold..
I am dedicating this picture to the beautiful lady who wished to see the frog. Anne Marie, dear, I hope my drawing met your expectations..
People usually have a tendency to look for a familiar face in the crowd. Or they used to. I don’t know because nowadays all I see on social media is ‘I avoid people’ or ‘I hate people’ themed memes. To be honest I could relate to many of them too. But yet again I am comforted by a familiar face. Why I said this as a preface is that I am going to tell you about my weird or not so weird habit. May be many of you also already have it. If there is a book stack in the movie or the series I am watching, I’ll just pause it and look carefully at the titles to see if there is anything familiar. When I find one I’ll be all glad like unexpectedly running into an old but dear friend. “Oh my god, is that you dear..”
And sometimes if I find books that are on my whether to read it or not list, I’ll definitely read it. Because somehow I am convinced that the book is worth giving a shot since the production people decided to put it up among the others. I conveniently avoids the possibility that the director might have said ‘just bring in some books to fill these shelves to make the character look like a reader’. Instead I create an imaginary scenario where the director give those specific titles to the assistant, to bring in because they are some fine works and he/she want their viewers to know how tasteful the character’s choices are.
See, I told you it is a weird habit. Or not. I don’t know. You tell me. What is you weird habit. And what is your take on books shown in movies? Tell us in the comments.. Ciao Buddies …
Do we try enough? I am just wondering. You know, we want or need something and we try for it. Sometimes we get it, sometimes we don’t. Did we try enough to earn or learn it? I am not blaming anyone or accusing or anything. I am just thinking. See, all I am asking is what if we tried a little more.
I’ll tell you my story. I was a terrible artist. All I knew to draw was a cartoon frog with bellybutton and two small dots as dimple. Not that I was embarrassed or anything. It was kind of cute and I was proud of it. Whenever we had a program in our class to decorate the blackboard we used to draw pictures on it. And as my contribution I would draw a happy little frog on the corner of the board. But that’s where my art began and ended. Well the frog wasn’t the only thing I knew to draw. I knew the common things like a butterfly, a simple five petaled flower etc. But that was so common and anyone could draw that. But the frog thing was my master piece. I waited for my artist classmates to draw pictures on my notebooks. I waited for them to draw on birthday cards for my best friend. Because let’s face it, I cannot always put a frog on everything because obviously it will start to look creepy.
So years passed and I still sticked on to my dimpled frog. And then the Corona happened. Everything was shut down, schools colleges, hang out places everything. Thankfully I had just finished my post graduation also so it was like recess time for me. One year and not much to worry about. I learned cooking and I ate them all. I read books, I watched movies and then I got bored. That’s when I decided to learn a new skill. First I drew random and simple pictures. Then I tried to draw some Madhubani drawings. To my surprise I did not so bad actually. I made a decision to watch YouTube tutorials on drawing pictures and follow their instructions. And I was good enough. In short, I was so glad and proud of myself that I tried it. I wanted to have a new skill when I come out of this pandemic, now I have it. Though the pandemic is not over yet.
Also it’s not so nice to use ‘in short’ when I have already poured out such a long paragraph. All I was trying to say is that we need to think if we try enough. May be we do. I don’t know. But I wasn’t trying enough before and I was happy with my froggy and settled for it. Then I decided to set a goal and tried and tried to achieve it. Now I have it, in me. Don’t think I am a polished or an accomplished artist. I am still an amateur. Till now I didn’t have it. Now I have a bit of it. A little bit of something is better than nothing.
So I am telling you this, if you have planned on trying ten times or have already tried a ten times, make it a eleven . Try one more time. Just try.
You know who can give us the best motivation, we ourselves. Talking to yourself either out loud or in mind as an internal conversation can do wonders. I have learned that. I will give you an instance.
I was learning to drive and three of the instructors were standing and watching me. There are poles which were put up to mark border and we are supposed pass beside it and not touch or hit it. And I in a panic hit two iron poles. Dang! Luckily the instructors didn’t say anything. But I myself was ashamed. Nevertheless I started my soliloquy and it went somewhat like this. “It’s okay. It happens, you are here to learn, just like everybody else. But our aim should be to cover an eight (In India we are asked to drive through an ‘8’ to get the two wheeler license) without the foot touching ground and not hitting a pole. All you have to do is focus more and preplan your movements. You will be fine “
Believe me, I was totally fine after that. And for the rest of the day I didn’t hit any pole, nor did I touch the ground with feet. That’s when I realized that I can help myself. I can motivate and support myself just like any other person could do. When I thought about it I felt like to sharing with my people. So here I am sharing my little home remedy.
How do you comfort yourself in situations of stress or crisis. Do tell us. We would love to know. Ciao Buddies…