Parenting

Life Lessons from My Child

Neetu Ralhan
7 to 11 years

Created by Neetu Ralhan
Updated on May 13, 2014

Life Lessons from My Child

“Mamma, you apologize often, you should not.”

The words hit me real hard. One because they came from my 9 year old and second because his saying them out loud meant he had been observing me and forming an opinion all this while.

As I tried to justify my actions, he added, “When we are quick to say sorry, the other person starts feeling they are always right without realizing their own mistake. We should leave them alone for some time.”

That was a little too much for me to absorb. I had to let it sink in, the unexpected onslaught of wisdom from someone who was still a baby in my eyes.

Although it was uncomfortable to be confronted by a child, I was exhilarated to know that my baby, this boy, had a mind of his own. While young children subconsciously adopt parents’ behavior and habits, he had developed an independent thought process. 

Arjun is now 12 years old and there have been several moments when he has left me speechless and made me logically question if there could be a different way of doing some of the ‘grown up stuff’.

In this blog, I am sharing with you some extraordinary lessons learnt by fellow Proparents (Please click on the image above to enlarge it) through their child. Perhaps you have also learnt a thing or two from the little wise people in your life. If reading this warms your heart, or if you wish to share a light bulb moment you experienced through your child, do share it in the comments below.

 

Dad, don’t let my trust go up in smoke. - Saurabh Saini is confronted by 7 year old Mrinal

Trust and truthfulness are two virtues which we like our kids to imbibe, but mostly when it comes to setting examples for them, we perhaps miss the mark, without realizing that they observe and take notice of such things. One day Mrinal asked whether I had smoked a few minutes earlier. 

I had been caught in my tracks, so I just tried to make light of the whole thing. So I asked him, Why are you pointing at me, your mother could also be the one who smoked.” 

His reply was, “She always tells me the truth, but I can’t say that for you.” 

That was the day I quit smoking. 

Things don’t have to be perfect, they just have to be. - Navneet Bahri learns from 7 year old Prisha
Child is the father of man. I heard this many years back, long before I could really make sense of it. One evening, my child was creating a new board game of her own; something that involved butterfly cutouts, a dice and a board with numbers 1-100 written on it.

She showed me the game, I try to understand it, and then I did the grown-up act. I suggested improvisations. She listened, excitedly adding on a few things. I got carried away to suggest some more changes. When even after a couple of suggestions, I did not stop; she told me something so evolved, in the easiest words, “Mama, we are not trying to make a perfect game, right!”

Wow….BANG! Another reality check! in the most subtle of ways. In our quest for perfection, the first thing we let go of is the one which is most important – fun!

If the choice is between Perfection and Happiness, I listen to my child. And I choose to be happy.

Negativity, what in the world is that? - Syed Muksit learns to unlearn from 3.5 years old Riyaan

Anger, sadness, ego. As adults, we know these emotions and that is why we fight and sometimes end up not speaking with the people we love for days, weeks and even months. 

Children are innocent; they do not know these feelings until they learn it from adults. For them, a negative emotion is a passing, fleeting experience, which is why they are able to stay happy and bounce back even after getting a scolding or screaming.

Seeing the way my child manages to stay in this zen-like state all the time, I have learnt to detach myself, to whatever extent I can, from these unwanted emotions and I find myself more happy and content with the self and the surrounding. The moment I unlearned these negative emotions, I stopped experiencing them, thanks to my little boy. 

A lesson too many, and counting! - Bhavna Awasthy is constantly evolving, thanks to 7 year old Anahita

There is a lot that my little one has taught me and I really don’t know where to begin, but I will try.

Everything will happen in its own sweet time, we can control only so much. Before I had my daughter, I was a little low on patience, everything had to be now, but after her, my patience levels had to be developed. I realized I could only control so much, things would happen when it was time for them to happen. More importantly, I could not rush my baby. I call her an old soul. Now my pace is different...and I am glad.

When I raise my voice even at someone else my baby gets scared and upset. Nobody likes to get yelled at. I realized, I could not raise my voice at anyone, leave aside my own child as every time I was upset with someone, my little one got scared of me.

Time spent with her is the best gift I can give her. None of the toys or gifts would mean anything if my child was lonely and sad. We spend hours together, just finger painting sometimes, and she is so happy. Just a hug, a smile, a favorite toffee, some playing with thermacol balls, bubble wrap or a good tickle.... it takes very little to be happy. 

Being happy is no rocket science. - Jween Samuel lives with a happy 10 year old monk called Samarth

Happiness is simple, my child keeps reminding me with his cool and composure. One day I was really upset when I came home from work. Samarth does not usually like going for a walk. But that day, he asked me to go for a walk with him. We walked for some time and met few of our friends and neighbors. I had to smile and talk to everyone.

After we returned, he said, “See your mood is now so much better.” It is overwhelming to see how my child connects with me like no one can.

Whenever I am upset with him over something, he tells me, “Mom, your blood pressure would go up, please calm down.” He is a very positive and calming force in my life. 

Dad, you missed the important things. - Manmeet Walia is learning to appreciate the small things, thanks to 9 year old twins Shaurya and Veer

The other day, I learnt that Veer is now listening to Justin Beiber. That was the time it hit me that the kids have grown up. Patience and realization is an ongoing process on a daily basis with kids. Sometimes when I tend to be insensitive towards the little things, they sit me down and make me understand, they make me see the side of things I am not able to see myself.

It is a very proud moment for me and I love being shown the way by these two gentlemen in my life.

Sulking is such a Waste of Time - Geeta Arya is learning to let go, with the help of 5 year old Pryanshi

My child shows me how life can be so simple and uncomplicated. Once she had this fight with her best buddy and came home fuming. I usually try to stay out of these things and let her figure out what she wants to do.

The next day, she comes to me and says, “If he doesn’t speak with me, I will go and talk to him. Because I want to play with him.” That’s all. Plain and simple. No ego hassles, no complications. Pryanshi teaches me to have as few knots in my relationships as possible and if there are any, there is no harm if I take the initiative to untie them.

She says she wants to be like me, but I want to be like her. 

Mom, you are being mean! - Smita Shah is glad to be reprimanded by 8 year old Aarav

“Speak properly and I will listen to you. Show some respect!” Of late I had been using these words often with my child. Every mother loses her cool at times and children often become the punching bag for the simple reason that they are around and they cannot shout back at you.

I was having this really bad day, and I ended up venting all my frustration at my son. What does he do? He simply walks up to me, holds my hand and says, “Mom, please speak with me politely and I will listen to you. You are scolding me because something is irritating you.”

This guy gave it back to me the way I needed it. I have been trying to mend my ways since :)

 

These were just some of the countless extraordinary gifts received by these parents from little angels in their lives. Innocent, effortless thoughts that keep us grounded, and give us a much needed reality check from time to time.

What life lesson have you learnt from your little one?

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| Jul 13, 2015

Nice article,small small things happening daily but get a chance to recollect after reading your article. My 4. 5 year old daughter always mention to her dad when sometime he raises a pitch while doing conversatiom "dont shout papa.... talk aram se". I find a change in my husband... actually he mind now his pitch before he starts. there are number of things which our kids are precieving from us whether its from teacher,neighbours,in laws and friends.

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| Jul 01, 2015

Thank you Kirti for the encouragement. Hope to share another experience soon which hopefully will strike a chord with fellow parents.

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| Jun 17, 2015

Nice article Neetu... I am becoming a fan of yours... I too have learned a lot from my kids... I let them be what they are without mending them too much... My son, 8 years old, is an introvert and doesn't share his emotions easily.. But since I started spending time with him, he is opening up... Growing up fast... Daughter is his opposite, makes friends easily and tells everything.. Both of them are beautiful in their own ways and make me complete. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

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| Jan 12, 2015

wonderful article... seriously kids teach us many small things... I've 4 yrs old son and he keeps checking my patience all the time... I'm improving as well as learning as a parent on many things and feel really very lucky to have such a little nd cute friend in my life

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| Jan 11, 2015

Am touched beyond words, thouh not a mother now, but will surely try to apply these when I have kids of my own. .

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| May 24, 2014

Every one has one question to ask kids without fail. That is - What will you be when you grow up? A nurse who visited my mother twice a week asked my daughter, then 9 yrs, the same question. In total calm she replied... Haven't thought of it yet. The nurse pounced back with a few more of them. My daughter simply said.... Why is it necessary to become something after growing up. Can't we just be. And hence taught a lesson that before even thinking of making our children good, responsible & independent human beings, we fix professions on them.

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| Mar 04, 2014

Thank you Sweety, that moved my heart :)

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| Mar 04, 2014

lovely experiences .... it made me re-think how i have to behave with my little one, thx for sharing :)

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| Feb 13, 2014

Thank you Sonali :)

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| Feb 13, 2014

Thank you Sonali :)

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| Feb 13, 2014

Indeed beautifully written... Kids r amazing gifts of God to us... Thnx

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| Feb 05, 2014

read

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| Jan 07, 2014

I am raising my daughter almost alone, as wife is behind her career. I several times learn from her about my mistakes and reactions to her. She is 6 years old, but use some words which are really thoughtful. Like sometime I was angry on her for her mess in house, she used to say "take help from others or dont do too much work". This is really surprising for me. She is reflector of my behaviour and my best teacher !

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| Jan 04, 2014

some has said so correct "a child gives birth to a mother"

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| Jan 04, 2014

some has said so correct "a child gives birth to a mother"

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| Jan 04, 2014

some has said so correct "a child gives birth to a mother"

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| Jan 04, 2014

Thank you Divya and Anurima. Your appreciation is an important validation in itself :)

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| Dec 30, 2013

Beautiful Neetu! What I liked the most about the blog are the real experiences you have mentioned. We do forget little things and think that all our actions are correct; we never easily admit our mistakes. Sometimes we do need that nudge and we get it from our children- even things done everyday can be made fun. We are reminded of unconditional love, talking silly, laughing out loud and also respecting others, whether people or animals. Very nice blog.. Loved it :)

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| Dec 29, 2013

So many times we are so wrapped up in our daily lives that we fail to notice such little things that turn out to be big lessons for us..... thanks for reminding us to look up to our children to re-learn the forgotten virtues like patience, forgiveness, honesty love and simplicity

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| Dec 26, 2013

Shilpa.. this beauty is just never ending. Yesterday my child told me he does not like when I bargain with rickshaw pullers and auto drivers. He said,"You always tell them its not that far but I always see that it IS that far. " We had a small yet meaningful conversation on the rickshaw ride and I promised him that I will be more mindful next time onwards. I admitted that we cannot measure their physical labor in terms of money. Thank you for taking the time to read and share your thoughts.. Love to your baby.

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| Dec 26, 2013

Wow... Neetu this is just amazing!! My kid aged 3 now has really taught me the meaning of life!! He is the energy of my life and i just don't know how you could manage so beautifully to give words to my emotions. excellant write up... sometimes we happen to ignore life's most beautiful things... just spending time with our kids, just a hug or two, a peck here and there and above all listening too your child... can make us better humans!!

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| Dec 25, 2013

Ishta.. thank you for reading xx

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| Dec 25, 2013

Meenambigai.. I felt a familiar lump in my throat on reading what you have shared. The beauty that children bring into our lives is unlimited. Thank you for sharing. Wish you many more wonderful moments with your babies.

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| Dec 25, 2013

A vry vry nice writeup Neetu. We never realize bt our children often teach us things in a vry simple n effective way. We just need to keep our heart n mind open.

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| Dec 25, 2013

My daughter is not a spendthrift. She always chooses for hours before she buys anything. Until extremely useful and needed she never spends a penny. But once she took our camera to school for a project and unfortunately it was stolen by someone within minutes. The teachers called us and when we went to school I could n't control my tears as it was our lucky one. But my daughter kept herself composed and said 'mama please don't cry in front of others. It is embarrassing. U have told me many times not to crib over spilt milk'. I found a spark that day as how weak I had been in handling tough situations. One day when I fought with all my might with my husband, my son came with tears and told me, 'the fault is yours mama, u need to be patient'. It was striking on my face that day and I felt ashamed for behaving so. Lucky to learn life lessons from kids!

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| Dec 25, 2013

Excellent write-up Dear Neetu! After reading this article I was lost in my thoughts for a long time and found how many times my kids have taught me good things.

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