Am I still a Bulletproof Parent?

 

Candles spell out the traditional English birt...

Candles spell out the traditional English birthday greeting (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Last weekend ,my daughter was invited for a birthday party and I dread these invitations.First, I don’t know the child’s parents.Second, I keep waiting for a call from the mother who is organizing this party in the gaming zone of a posh mall.Third, my daughter wants to go .Another concerned mother calls to check if i am sending my child with a small paper invitation from the classmate who has told them that they have to be there.

 

After lot of pondering, we decide to take turns to stay in the mall till they have the party.I decide to drop both the girls while she chooses to pick them up .I stay in the mall for one hour, browsing books(in the store closest to the gaming zone) while the other mother comes for the next hour.(The card says they the party will last for two hours).When the other mother reaches to pick up the kids, the hosts had already left and the children (sixteen in total) were busy deciding on their prizes from the points won.

 

I took a pledge that I won’t send her for any birthday party till I know the parents well enough that I could tell them to stay with the invited children till the last kid is picked up.

 

Am I a Bulletproof parent or others are islands who just care about themselves?

 

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The 4-2-1 syndrome

Fatherhood, By Robert Scoble

Fatherhood, By Robert Scoble (Photo credit: Thomas Hawk)

The number of children suffering from the 4-2-1 syndrome is on a rise or it could be called a 4-2-2 syndrome too.Well, it refers to four over indulgent grandparents and two busy parents taking care of one (or two) child. This over attention and over protection would certainly harm the child

When I talked about Grand Parenting, some parents talked about this over showering of love by the grandparents.

I, a believer of Moon Parenting, would repeat,”BALANCE is the key.”

Communicate with your parents and parents-in-law about the common goal-raising balanced children who can feast as well as fast with equal ease.Remind them that they were never  lenient and indulgent as parents and that you appreciated that.

We need to find new ways to make our children realize that money doesn’t grow in credit cards and happiness doesn’t actually mean eating a happy meal.Grand Parents come in really handy to drive this point home provided we can work as a wonderful flock of doves who fly in a V-Shaped formation.The dove flying in the front helps the dove flying behind him as his wing movement reduces the effort of  the dove back in line by 30 percent.When the leading dove gets tired, the dove in the back replaces him to maintain the momentum .

Hail Team Parenting.It is fun and fruitful.

Grandparenting is ‘grand’ parenting!!

 

Matti

Matti (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

You may find it odd but this is a fact.

 

My 12 year old has four best friends-her paternal and maternal grandparents.She has her joy time with all of them which is full of fun and learning.

 

I never imagined that my doctor dad who is very quiet, would share his childhood secrets with her.They play chess together .They water the plants together and give high fives on discovering a new pod in the bushes.She keeps a photograph of her grandpa holding her at her bedside and sees it first thing in the morning.

 

My mom,a hardcore disciplinarian feeds her all the nutritious soya cakes,mixed vegetable porridges, using her convincing skills and culinary expertise.I would lose my patience thinking about it only while she performs the inconceivable task of feeding her with a pure healthy diet everyday.The best part is they play badminton and do power yoga together.

 

My dad-in -law is a wonderful man with a superb sense of humor.He is a carom champion and a master storyteller.My daughter never finishes her day without listening to his funny anecdotes.They bond like best buddies and make all of us laugh.

 

My mum -in-law is physically challenged due to an accident that was almost fatal but her indomitable spirit and love for life is infectious.She is extremely fond of music and my little one is training to be a classical singer.They sing and enjoy themselves.

 

This is a life chosen by me and my husband where our parents are the best friends of our daughter.

 

Believe me, it is not a fairy tale as we all are individuals with different tastes, aspirations and expectations.Still,we have made it work because it is worth it.Grandparenting is a boon for the young children who can get the most trusted friends in their grandparents who double up as the best guides when it comes to answer the tough questions of life.

 

For every MOON PARENT,grandparenting is ‘GRAND’ parenting!

 

36 - High Five

36 – High Five (Photo credit: Holtsman)

 

A beautiful evening with my daughter

Cover of "The Help"

Cover of The Help

Last Saturday was a revelation for me.I had wanted to see the movie “the help” for long.My daughter had seen me reading the book and talking about Kathryn Stockett and the book to my friends.Last Saturday ,my daughter was watching “The spy next door”(for the third time..?) and she saw that “The Help” was about to begin on another channel.

She weighed the idea of letting go of her own movie by informing me about it or maintaining the Status Quo(she revealed it to me later) and decided to tell me.I was thrilled to watch the movie.My daughter sat beside me for a while and I expected her to leave as I didn’t think that the movie would appeal to an eleven year old.Surprisingly, she persisted, got hooked, asked   many questions and sobbed at the end of it.

I hugged her and talked about the issues raised in the movie and she said,’This was the Best evening, Mum.”

Are You an ISLAND PARENT?

I have presented to you a Rainbow of parents, starting from YES PARENTS and BULLETPROOF PARENTS on the one end of the spectrum to POLARISED PARENTS and ISLAND PARENTS on the other end.We will discuss the ideal lying in the middle…MOON PARENTS later.

Since you are reading this post, I can assume that you are not an Island Parent but you must have surely come across some of them.For them, kids are just not on their agenda.Though they be parents but they are not interested in becoming parents.

I met one of my workshop participants recently who is a three month old mom.She confided in me,”I am back to work next month.I miss a stimulating adult conversation the whole day. Earlier, I would do big negotiations for my company and what i end up doing now is to negotiate with my domestic help.”

My mind was thinking about the importance of first 2000 days in the growth of a child.I can’t forget a mother from kolkata, a company secretary by profession who told me,”When my first boy slipped in my arms, I saw myself in the mirror and waved to myself to say good bye for 1000 days.”

A mother who loves to be a Vacation Mom…A father who forgets the grade in which his child studies…A mother who can’t fit in a meeting with her child’s counsellor in her busy schedule…A father who signs all the cheques but forgets to keep a check…

Think,do we deserve to be parents?

What has my child taught me?

 

A child jumping

A child jumping (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

It is a very simple question unless we want to answer it.

 

When did I last thank my child for making me learn something new or something that i had forgot over the years?

 

As a life transformation coach,I have come across thousands of children in last fifteen years and they all have taught me in their own unique ways.(I have an abundant supply of this emotion called Parenting)

 

I have learnt from these children to value’The Power of Now‘.Children don’t know how to worry for the future. We teach them how to worry.The other day , my daughter had an assessment at school and she was merrily reading a Ruskin Bond novel.I reminded her twice in a fearful tone about her coming assessment.

 

“Is it essential to worry?”she asked me.

 

Children have hourly goals and daily dreams but they are the most important tasks till they last.

 

My daughter has taught me to be enthusiastic.She can make everything fresh and happening with her exuberance.She is excited to open a new bar of soap, she looks forward to meet her home room teacher everyday.

 

Lets learn from our children as much as we want them to learn from us.I am sure they will beat us hollow.

 

Are you a POLARIZED PARENT?

Rome visit, June 2008 - 57

Rome visit, June 2008 – 57 (Photo credit: Ed Yourdon)

This is a proliferating breed of parents whom you will identify with immediately.

With our patience plummeting and rigidity on a rise, we are bound to turn into polarized parents.

We have enormous differences with our spouses over plenty of issues.This difference of opinion between two different individuals is natural but when they have distinct, almost opposite views on parenting, they become polarized.When they fail to devise a common parenting mission, they confuse the child and make him insecure.

I, unfortunately , come across many parents during my workshops who try to outshine each other, resorting to blame game or criticism.They don’t even hesitate in turning their children into referees in their embarrassing show of ‘Who is a Better Parent?’

Polarized Parents raise children who can adapt with weirdest of people, courtesy their parents but they are insecure and indecisive.

You may not be the best fitting partners but you have to be like nut and bolt as parents.They have no value without each other.