Exactly one year ago I declared my love. For everything around and within me. The love affair has continued and gotten stronger with each passing day. The love has made me do things I never thought I could or would or should. And that is exactly because I stopped defining my could, would and should. I “couldn’t” define anyway – I have been so hopelessly besotted and dreamy eyed to “do” anything. I just loved. Because non loving, I realized, took so much effort. Lazy is good. Don’t just do something, stay there – I heard myself say.
So under the effect of that intoxication of life last year – that came with all its moods and hues from one extreme to the other – pain, pleasure, anxiety, hope, fear, love – I ended up doing what perhaps is the biggest thing ever of my life.
I adopted myself. No there isn’t a typing error in there. Not adapt. Adopt. Exactly like I am. Unconditionally.
After a lovely 5 year old who I play silly-talking and rhyming games with, and a heavenly 3 month old who coos next to me as I write this – in the last year I became a happy mother of three. The third kid took a while coming to my lap. But I am so glad she finally did, after a rather long gestation. She had been wanting to come to me for so long now, but me in my whirlwind of the world and a mad goose chase – couldn’t even hear her cries. When I finally welcomed her in the lap of my heart, I cried through my emotional labour pains. Of being estranged with her all this while. Of ignoring her. Of even bullying her at times. Of berating her. Of blaming her. Of not understanding her. Of not even listening to her. Of being so demanding of her. And then sometimes spoiling her to the extreme to overcome all of that. A case of really bad, bad parenting there.
And this one needs as much love and nurturing as the other two kids, if not more. Although this one is perhaps easier than the other two, as I have faintly known her for a while now – exactly 37 years today. But even then, she doesn’t fail to surprise me almost every day. Ever since I defined a relationship of mother and child with my own self, I am realizing how much of life I had been missing all this while. Love for everyone and everything, like charity, begins with yourself. You can only give others what you have within you. Cleaning the muck in the world outside, starts with cleaning your own house first.
Now this does not mean that one gets egocentric and self-obsessed – in fact quite the contrary. Just like I would strive to do what is the best for my two kids by understanding them, I would do the same for myself. Just like I would keep a check on their sugar intake, but still let them indulge in candy now and then – I would do that for me too for the metaphorical candy without pushing myself down a guilt trip. Just like I would tell my kids there is nothing they can’t do once they set their hearts to it, I would tell that to myself too. Just like I would teach them to be caring and compassionate, full of life and fearless – I would teach that to myself too. Just like I would tell my kids to not be attached and cry hoarse over a toy that broke, I would tell that to myself too. Hoping that all my three kids learn to accept, forgive, move on, be grateful and not take themselves and life seriously. Silly is the new serious. Flow and everything will flow in your direction. Follow your heart and everything else will follow you. Fall in love and everything will fall in the right place.
And like any parent, I don’t have a favorite among my three kids. Dropping the five year old on time to school with all that he needs, is as important as reaching back in time to feed the baby, is as important as stopping quickly on the way to buy my vanilla latte and chocolate cake that I promised myself.
Loving is most natural. And so is parenting. More kids doesn’t mean you have lesser love to give. Adopting myself helps me adopt everyone else and adapt to everything that life has to offer. This 37 year old kid is happy to arrive yet again in a warm, loving family that has the best father available in town too – only he likes to stay away from the limelight!
So welcome home, my newest baby!