Tuesday: The song by 'Queen' goes well with my current state of mind..'break free'. It's more a mindset issue. I kind of feel I am living in a 'box'. I have clear entry and exit points- by that I mean clear 'timelines' to get my work for the day done- starting from my run early in the morning, waking up the kids, getting them ready for school, grocery shopping, organising dinner, playtime and then the dinner and bed time routine. Do 'we' really need a routine for ourselves? Do we need to always follow that to the 'T'?
Unknowingly, this got tested last week- My husband suggested we go out for dinner mid-week (just me and him). Of course that was a bit of a shocker- it meant, he needs to come back from work on time, we need to eat a quick bite and be home before kids get to bed..It took me a couple of hours to say 'yes'. But somewhere inside me, I knew I wanted to 'break free'. I wanted to see if this was going to change anything in my day-to-day life. And surprisingly the whole outing was smooth. The kids were in their routine. They got some 'me' time together, while we grabbed some of 'ours'. But not to miss, that I kept looking at the time during our dinner out.I am hoping I can get over that in the next few times.
A second instance- I decided to go watch a movie on a Sunday evening with my 8-year old (with school the next day). It took me a while to convince her, that breaking some of our 'own' created rules is feasible. For her more than the movie, the excitement of an outing on a Sunday evening (I think) was more liberating.
So where does this leave me? or the kids? I think over the years, I have started to feel a bit bound and rigid. And unknowingly, this rigidity started to form around the kids too. I could see that they would feel uncomfortable doing anything outside the set routine. In the long run, I don't want them to have 'fixed' ideas on what is 'right' and 'wrong' or more importantly I want them to be adaptable. This maybe one way to keep their thinking flexible. I still haven't been able to 'break free' completely (as a mum) but for me little baby steps are a good start. Only time will tell, if my approach is right.
Thursday: After attending the year-end choir concert of my eight-year old, it took me back a few months when this whole thing started. At the start of the academic year, she had mentioned about her interest to audition for the choir at school. I had not taken it too seriously and had let it pass without intervening to help her. A few days later, my girl came home disappointed. She said we had missed the deadline to audition for it and she couldn't be a part of it. I think that was her first interface with 'rejection' or maybe 'failure'. The fault was mine and her's and we both learnt some lessons. For her, it was more of starting to be alert, only she can chase her goal, and that nothing in life comes easily (and no longer on a platter). This was of course a very small instance but I guess at her age, that's where it starts.
As a mother for me, it was about making her realise that now she needs to fight some of her battles herself and never go with the intention to only 'succeed', for her to apprehend that failure is fine and what is more important is the baby step towards your goal that you have taken. I think she always has a great example of her elder cousin brother who is a budding national-level sportsman and has to face defeat often. We have always seen him take it with a wide smile and only learning more from it.
For her luck, auditions opened up again and I think I succeeded somewhere! I wasn't even aware when she auditioned and finally got chosen. Of course I never made a big deal out of the success in the house and let it pass as just another 'initiative'. Or else had she failed, her pain would have been more.
Maybe our upbringing and the adversities we faced (atleast me) in our day-to-day lives taught me my lessons of life and made 'changes' easy for me to accept. I know situations are different with this generation but am hoping that somewhere my core values stay the same and my kids learn to accept failure the way I did it with a 'smile'.