Parenting: a challenging job


I have been a headstrong girl with strong opinions and I always wonder how my parents, specially my mother coped with me in my growing up years. Those were the days when girls were supposed to be only seen and not heard, girls were supposed to be quiet, timid and shy and I was nowhere near these qualities.

As soon as I became an adult I found many shortcomings in my mother’s parenting skills and outspoken as I am, had no qualms in making my opinions known to my dear mother. She heard me patiently most of the times and sometimes retorted about the mess I had created in my head.

Now, when I am a mother of two kids who are so diverse in their nature and the entire responsibility of parenting spooks me sometimes, I wonder how did my mother manage me in my growing up, rebellious phase.

Now, when I am a mother of two kids whose emotional needs are so very different and unique, I wonder how my mother managed me and my brother, two individuals who were poles apart.

Now, when I am a mother, I realize that there is no school for the essential skill called “parenting” and one has to essentially learn on the job. Learning on the job does guarantee that ‘You miss some and You gain some’.

There is no quantification about “How much is too much?” and “How less is too less?” in the book of Parenting; it depends on the experience as well as the intuition of mother and there is no guarantee that I will get it all ‘RIGHT’. I fact, I am already aware of so many places where I have been able to make a complete mess and then worked sincerely to make it right.

Now, when my kids are in their preteen era, I thought about my own growing up years as a rebellious teen and I realized that the most wonderful thing my mother did was to ‘let me be’. She never forced her ideas on me or never discouraged me from speaking my mind; a rarity in those days. She never even set any kind of societal standards for me to follow blindfolded. I am so indebted to her ways of parenting because it has made me ‘Who I am” and I am really proud of my upbringing.

I am attaching a photo of me, my mother and my daughter which was clicked 7 years ago. A photo which reminds me of all the love I have shared with my mother and of all the love I have for my darling daughter.


– By Vidhu Bhatnagar.


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