Friday, April 1, 2016


Pic.: Shankar Ramachandran

Some twenty-five years ago, I had published a small booklet by the title – ‘The Late Bloomer’. It contained some inspiring passages – rather my notes… which I had written at different points of time. One of them was this:

“I tried to make my younger brother a great man…
Day in and day out, I sat with him,
Tried to motivate him, coax him,
Train him, guide him, support him,
and kept reminding him:
‘One day you shall be great’

Many years passed by,
nothing dramatic happened;
I began to get frustrated, mad…

Then, one day,
he coolly told me:
‘Brother, there are mountains,
there are plateaus and there are plains;
Is it necessary for every soul on this earth
to be great like a mountain?’

I started thinking…

I started thinking.”

Years later, in 2008, I carried this passage in another book I had published – ‘Vaachas Chame’. Ever since then, this book is being used as the text book in our PD sessions. Hundreds of students have presented – and they still do – this passage as part of their practice session. One can sense, how almost all of them can connect to this piece, its simple yet sublime message…

Who is this younger brother? And who is this elder brother?

The word ‘brother’ is just a metaphor here… This, in fact, is the story of most of us – particularly parents and their children… 

Honestly, if we as parents had experienced the so called – ‘greatness’ – we would never ever enforce it upon our children…. We would have left it for our children to ‘be’... grow the way we did – at their own pace, with their own rhythm… and discover their own place under the Sun… Yes, we would never ever have set ‘agenda’ or a ‘blueprint’ for our children… We would stay away from that harshness… that selfish thrill called – ‘realizing our unfulfilled dreams through our innocent children’…

I bet, none of us would like to admit to this guilt, this sin… But, our denial doesn’t change the reality…

We have never learnt to accept our imperfection and mortal strength… Therefore, we expect our kids to be ‘perfect’… ‘Great’

In the movie ‘Kapoor & Sons’, there is this scene when the possessive mother (Ratna Pathak Shah) gets the rude shock of her life when her son, Rahul (Fawad Khan) finally, tells her that his whole life had been a ‘lie’… The mother cannot digest it. “I always thought you were my ‘perfect Bachcha’…” She breaks down…  

To this, what son tells is the essence of this Post!

Living life to fulfill someone else’s expectations and dreams is a colossal load to carry in life… It is a killing stress… It is murder of innocence!

When we allow our children that space to grow… make mistakes and learn… make mistakes and discover, on their own, who they really are… yes, when we see and own up our own imperfection – make peace with it… Yes, that would be the only time, perhaps, we can caress that little kid in us and whisper in his heart: “Honey, you are my perfect bachcha.”


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