19 August 2008

What do we teach our children

We had been to a park near our house. The sun had gone down and there were just a few kids still playing on the tarzan type swing. There are four such swings and the one next to the one where my daughter was playing was used by a group of children. A few guys came into the area and stood next to that swing. Immediately a small girl (hardly 7) looked at one guy and shouted 'Bangladeshi, Bangladeshi, go away!!' and started throwing sand at them. The other kids cheered on. I was shocked beyond speech. The Bangladeshi guys just smiled and stood there. I thought of going over and giving the kids a piece of my mind, when I noted that their parents were also standing near by and smiling. What has happened to us? Is this what we want our children to learn? Not even a single reprimand from the parents and no apology to the guys.

This reminded me of something that happened in my daughter's school. She was in her nursery and learning her ABCs. They were associating the letters to words and had been taught about B as in Brown Bear. My daughter doesn't normally tell us about her daily activities in school. We just gather stuff as she speaks. So, once when I was feeding her, she suddenly asked me, "Mummy, am I brown?". She is fair (in the Indian sense) and I thought she was asking based on the snow white story. So I told her that she was fair. Immediately she tells me, "Mummy, fair means white. Only foreigners and Chinese can be white. All Indians are brown." I was pretty shocked. Didn't expect this from a 3 year old. I asked her where she had got this info and she just told that it was from school. On checking with her teacher later, I came to know that it was the from the other children in her class. Who would teach such things to small children? Are we introducing racial discrimination at such tender ages?

14 August 2008

Why we need daughters

This morning, my daughter work up pretty early, 4:30am and didn't go back to sleep. I had to come to office early and so just got ready and started to leave. All the others in the house were still sleeping and I asked the little one to go back to bed. She kept coming behind me and when I was going to open the door, she asked me, "Mummy, you didn't have anything to eat!!". I said, "Yes dear, I'll pick up something on the way". She wouldn't accept it. "Mummy at least drink milk." "I'm late, so will have it on the way." By now she was almost in tears. "Mummy, you would be hungry" and starts crying.

Now, you can't ignore this right? I ended up having a biscuit, a glass of water, a very wet kiss and a satisfied kid!!!

11 August 2008

Does God love me?

"Mummy, am I a good girl?"
"Yes darling..."
"Mummy, does God think I'm a good girl?"
"Yes darling..." (Wondering where this leads to)
"Then why doesn't he like me?"
"Who said he doesn't like you? God loves you so much"
ponders for a few mins.."I think God doesn't love me mummy. Why else would he not call me to his side"
I didn't understand what she was trying to tell and looked at her enquiringly.
She was busy watching the TV and they were showing a photo with a garland around it.
"God does love you darling. But he has work for you, work that only you can do. So he wants you to complete all those before going to him." (Although I was trying to answer her question similar to the 1000 other questions that she asks me everyday, this made my heart ache).