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Saturday, August 15

My Son's Father : 5 Things I Re-Learnt From Neo

I was a bit apprehensive how my son, Neo would adjust to this city shift - Bombay to Delhi. He took less than 24 hours!! Children are that adaptive...I have tried to spend more time with him these last two months...It's amazing how you can learn/ unlearn/ re-learn tons of stuff from your kids. In their innocence and curiosity they often make profound comments and observations....Here's what I picked-up!

1. Look beneath/ look around. I remember it was one of the first few weeks in our Gurgaon house, he ran upto me to show something, Dragged me to the 'backyard' and asked me to look at 'the thing'. With my well trained planner eyes I kept searching for 'a thing' a 'big physical thing' while Neo wanted me to show how tall the grass had grown!!

He often stops me and shows me an unusual flower, the full moon, a bird on the wire, ants in the bathroom...

2. Play and learn. Like all kids, he has an insatiable appetite for play. Kids want to play in the morning, while eating, while studying, before going off to sleep...In play they learn. Playing UNO, snakes and ladder, cricket, ludo and Monopoly has made me wonder how we can inject more play at work. Increasingly a lot of work that we( at least I do) is conceptual and creative. Being too serious and working like a factory shift has diminishing returns beyond a point. It's the play value at work that adds that extra bit!

3.Do you know my friends?It's important for him that my wife and I remember all his friends names(often I fail miserably)- Bombay school friends, Bombay Ashiana building friends, Gurgaon school friends, the colony friends, the school bus friends...

What I feel is in all the lip service that a lot of marketing pays the DM mailer often reads - Dear loyal customer, the call centre guy often calls up from your mobile company to find if you are a post-paid or a pre-paid customer!!

If it's a relationship you care, remembering names is important. Period.

4. M and H.The other week-end I had taken Neo to the Qutab Minar(achcha tower hai he kept on saying), he suddenly points out to some similarity he found between the Hindi letter 'mm' and the English alphabet - 'H'. I wondered why this thought never came to me.

Is it because our analytical minds have been trained to spot the differences more than focus on similarities...Kids are good at recognising patterns. And it would help if we could learn to relax our grey cells and hunt for patterns in unlikely places.

5. Deliver-what-you-promise. It's very important for Neo that I walk the talk. If you have promised a bedtime-story, it must be told. Neo would wait upto an hour with sleep-filled eyes to hear a 'Ram-aur-Shyam' story from me.

Kids I have realised can teach us an awful lot...Next time before we brush them aside - Accha chup raho, abhi tum bache ho - maybe it would make more sense to lend them a ear!

P.S. The picture is that of a 'digital drawing' that he made on my laptop:-)

4 comments:

slowtumblinglife said...

he should be a painter!!!

Farting Pen said...

Very, very nice insights. Into life. And into the work that we do. Well drawn parallels.

Came across your blog through twitter. Will be following closely.

Was just wondering... 'Digital Drawing'? Times have changed, haven't they? Reminds me of a Dylan song, "Times, they are a changing."

Manish said...

thanks...

mrinal said...

Am sure Neo would be helpful in your finding many more meaningful insights that one forgets in the maddening world.