On a short vacation, Vyas and I were happily snacking in the evening at the restaurant attached to the resort while Varun and his dad were catching on some sleep. The little fellow was in one of his best ‘moods’ cracking some jokes and I was laughing away. A little later, he said something (that I don’t remember now!) that made me angry and I rebuked him. To which he said, “Thank God, at least now you are the normal strict-impatient-mom. You have either been laughing or smiling almost at everything I said the past hour!”
A couple of months back, during one of our usual one-to-one conversations, he surprised/shocked me by telling me that he liked the angry-mommy than the patient/friendly-mommy.
Whenever we have arguments (we have quite a few and quite often!), I have stood my ground to a ‘No’ as a ‘No’. He throws tantrums, pleads, looks for ‘outside’ support and finally relents when he knows that there is no way out. I have been trying to be a reasonable mom and if there is a strict ‘No’, it is either for junk food (pizzas, french fries, noodles are not included:)), or bad language/behavior. I admit there are times when I get tough unnecessarily and that usually happens when am angry with someone else or some situation and vent out the bottled-up frustration on my son. After some really very bad patches, I retrospect and apologize if I have erred, and if he is wrong, I try and make him see the point. When I sit to talk about how we could have handled something better, he, like an adult, says, “Amma, let us forget about it! Let us not talk about it” and dismisses it.
The more I think about these instances and try evaluating his statements, the more confusing it gets. A few questions I have been asking myself:
1. Am I being too hard on him?
2. Am I acting any differently after Varun’s arrival?
3. Or is it that Vyas is able to communicate his opinion/preferences in clear terms?
4. Or is it just his casual observation, a passing thing, and that I just need to ignore it for now?
5. How was I when I was 8 yrs old? Here, I could recollect several instances from my 2nd or 3rd standard. I understood when my parents had an argument, when a friend lost her parent, when there was a celebration, the joy of going on a trip, everything…
When I ask him why a child would like his mommy when she is strict when mostly kids of any age love being pampered, and like the mothers that yield to their demands, he tells me in a matter-of-fact tone that he really does not know why, but he really really finds me better that way!! Is there anyone out there who is able to even remotely identify with anything in this rant? Do share please! Will feel reassured if I know this is ‘normal’. If it isn’t, I have to work at it!!