What is right with today’s birthday parties?

We have been attending quite a few birthday parties suddenly. And its been a great experience for Disha- all the kids, the balloons and the festivity.

But not so great in another sense. Tons of chocolates, creamy cakes, frozen foods- in short a sugary junk haven. And the return gifts!

So,  we are denying our daughter the “good” in life. But, I don’t think sugar will do my daughter any good- may make her hyperactive, may get her hooked on to junk food for life. I do not believe that it will help her gain weight in a healthy way. Anyway, why are we all so hung over our kids weight?

I did not question this way of celebrating until I became a mom. Or for a fact, when we became parents, our outlook towards various aspects of life has undergone a profound transformation.  For the better, I hope.

This made us resolve even more that we need to make sure that birthdays are celebrated, yes, its a special day. But in a way that is in sync with helping our children grow in a healthy manner. Not  by shoving them towards materialism and junk food. Give them something of real use as gifts, if you do want to give gifts.

We have set ourselves up for a challenge!

Get out, get moving

This seems to be Disha’s motto now. There used to be a time, when Karthik and I could attend day long meetings, talks, conferences with Disha. We could keep her busy inside the halls and take her out from time to time.

Over the last few meetings, things have changed. She refuses, quite categorically, to stay indoors especially when we are not at home. Its a fight to get her to sit in a place even for half an hour without moving around. In her world, she wants to constantly explore and that is accomplished only when she can get the freedom to move.

Its a little wonder that children hate being taken to movies. Forget the loud sounds and the flashing lights, its I think, unfathomable in their minds that adults can sit in one place for so long, seemingly doing nothing.

The transformation from a state of near constant motion (expect for when they are asleep) to sitting at a place for long hours, no doubt occurs in schools. Its must be quite bewildering to small children, to be suddenly put in a room full of strange people and expected not to move for a few hours at the time. We successfully manage to beat out the exploring nature of their hands and feet in addition to their nurturing minds, all in the name of education.

As parents we need to respect their need to explore their new world. It is important for them to develop their self confidence and learn new things. For us, it means giving up on going to some intellectually simulating talks and meeting interesting people. Oh well! that can be done in some Disha- friendly settings too!

Is it supposed to feel this way

Young humans change fast, almost everyday. Its quite a feat too!

Disha used to sign and signal to let us know what she needed or what she wanted to tell us. Now all of a sudden, in a span of 2 weeks, she is using all these words. Ball, Balloon, Button, Bhajji, Paal (milk in Tamil), Haal(milk in Kannada), Dudu (breastmilk), Nose, Mouth, eyes, ears, Hello, Hi, Approm (later in Tamil), bus, auto, stop, no, ya and so many more. At least two new words are added to her vocabulary everyday. Then, she exclaims, ever so often- uhoh! Her songs have changed too. They have different lyrics and their tunes vary too.

Am I supposed to feel excited? On the contrary, I feel sad- the phase of signing is passing away very quickly. Disha is feeling so much more grown up that I miss her baby-self.