Wednesday, May 8, 2013

An Introspection-How Do My Family and Friends See Me?

     A friend from America  was doing  interview questions for an assignment in Interpersonal Communication class and needed Baby Boomers (born between the years 1946 and 1964) to answer 4 questions. I agreed to answer them and it was a wonderful experience of introspection as I never really got down to contemplating my thoughts and feelings. This self examination was an eye opener for me and reminded me of Aristotle’s words, “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”

Q . How do you think your family and friends see you, and do you think it's the same way you see yourself?

 A. My friends and family which includes my siblings, extended family, cousins, nieces and nephews see me as I see myself - a loving, caring, helpful, thoughtful and a bubbly person who laughs out loudly at the drop of a hat! People tell me that it is a God given gift to be able to laugh so heartily and merrily even at my age! :)  I love appreciation and indeed I do get them abundantly. My family and friends are confident that I will be there for them whenever needed and certainly yes, I will always be! I also see myself as a very optimistic person, because, when I look back at the many negative situations that I have faced, I've realized that instead of brooding and ranting, my mind has always started automatically working on what has to be done next! Finally, I see myself as a blessed person who is loved and called as a favorite person by so many!

    Now for the flip side! Unfortunately my three children (a married son and daughter and the youngest girl yet to be married)though they love me immensely, see me in a complete different light. All three of them are working, independent, having their own life style and stay in the city far away from our town. With so many crimes and accidents happening around us, I naturally do worry a lot about them for which I am branded as paranoid. My concern for their safety is misunderstood as suffocating them and not very normal! My advices to them now and then, to follow certain social norms and traditions have me promptly labeled as being narrow minded! They need me hovering in the background and do they take me for granted? Indeed, yes. I am expected to pamper them, it’s their birth right isn’t it? Well, whatever. My mother (who is still with us) cheers me up by constantly saying that  when they have kids of their own they will be able to understand me! That's a real encouraging and positive thought. Sam Levenson said ‘Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children.' Very very true!  :)

   In retrospect, as a very young parent ( I was a mother of 2 kids by the time I was 24) may be I've  made  some wrong decisions and choices. Now that I am older and wiser, when I reflect on my early parenting, I do have a few regrets, but then, I’m consoled that most parents my age feel the same! But my love for my children, family and home was and always will be unparalleled ! I do feel that I have let time slip through my fingers without having spent more time with my elder two kids who grew up in no time and left for college! Since my youngest arrived when I was in mid thirties,I spent all my time with her and  with the elder two away from home,I became very emotionally dependent on the youngest. Whatever. Right now,I do miss the point in time when I was the very center of my children’s existence! Anyway, that’s part and parcel of life and I look forward to many more blessings from above!  :)

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