SHE…may be the beauty or the beast

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SHE is now 8. I wrote this post about 6 years ago, when SHE was only 2. In all these years of writing, it remains my favorite. If you are a woman, I hope you see your own beauty reflected in her.

Dec 10, 2009

Khushi may not be an ideal Montessori kid but she is definitely a textbook case to apply the suggestions from Adele Faber’s book ‘How to Talk so Kids will Listen…’ I find her exasperating and completely unruly at most times. She is also equally adorable at those times which make the task of raising her that much more challenging. Imagine trying to discipline a naughty kid with the cutest pout? That’s my Khushi.

She is going to be a winner all the way. She puts so much of her living energies into the art of persuasion to get whatever she wants, that she just can’t not win! Of course, at this stage, this art is anything but subtle. From little doggy whines that will continue for half-an-hour to full-blown tantrums on the floor screaming at her loudest pitch in the middle of our bank’s customer service division, she is a real test for any mothers patience.

She has the power to tempt strangers into wanting to please her. She uses her smile endearingly and skillfully. It is not an omnipotent feature of her face as it is for Aryan. Rather, it is used as a tool, masterfully held back till the right moment and then unleashed upon the un-expecting, who is at most times, so taken by its beauty that he will gladly pop into a corner store and buy her a lollipop. 🙂

When her teacher complains that she is pampered and therefore pouts sullenly at everything that doesn’t go her way, I really have to hold myself back from rolling my eyes. I open my mouth to ask her for suggestions, and then I notice the same fatalistic surrender on her face that I feel in my gut constantly about my daughter’s behavior, and I quickly shut my mouth.

Her conversations are a show stopper. Her endearments for her brother are genuinely heartfelt and her inner struggle to control their relationship is apparent. She wants to be in charge of their play time together. She will command, instruct, direct and inspire him. She will tease him unendingly and when he won’t take it anymore and whacks her, she will turn into a wild cat and show her fangs!

No mention of Khushi is complete without describing her cuddles. She is bordering on chubby and still has remnants of the baby smell that I am trying desperately to engrain in my memory before I can no longer smell it. We will give each other cheeky (cheek-to-cheek) hugs and stay like that till either one of us feels the need to disentangle. She is like a little princess who knows that she is adorable. When she is in one of her moods and can’t seem to get out of her tantrum on her own, no amount of talking/ negotiating or persuasion will work on her. What does work every time is a bear hug. Just like Aryan, she has a physical need to connect with her mother and be held. This acceptance without judgment is the umbilical cord of any mother-daughter relationship. It would fare me well to remember this when she is a defiant teenager and doesn’t hold herself back while expressing how much she hates me. I know in my heart that these bear hugs will still do wonders at those times as they do now.

I often tell others that looking at her now; I can’t believe that I didn’t want a baby girl. We deserve each other. I deserve a second chance at understanding what it means to be a girl – through her eyes. She will always be my biggest parenting challenge, my most tumultuous relationship and my best reflection. I am so looking forward to see her develop and grow. I hope her beauty always shines and her spirit always soars…higher and higher.

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