Aditi Wardhan Singh

Words

I remember this outlandish conversation I had, even 30 years later, in Kindergarten.

My friend: I’m in Class B, we are the Best.

Me : I’m in Class A. We are fast because A is for Aeroplane !!

Yes, I know. My logic is outstanding! Today, I wonder why I never thought of A is for Amazing ? Hmmm … Point is, kids say the darnedest things. My son today says things which leave me eyes wide and mouth gaping as if the concept of language is suddenly new to me.

I word things being taken ” literally ” has taken a whole new meaning.

Just a few days back, he says, ” My teacher is awesome. You are just being mean. “

I reply, ” Did your teacher just make pancakes for you ? ” ( Yes, equally childish I know, but understand that it was the heat of the moment. )

” Well ” , he pauses. ” She would but she doesn’t have the ingredients! “

On other days, we have extremely saccharine conversations ( specially during bed time) like,

” Mom, are you missing your mama ? “

Me : ” Yes, I always miss my mom. “

Putting his palms on either side of my face, he goes, ” Mom, we will ask dad. If he says okay, I will take you to meet your mom. If he says no, I will take care of you so that you don’t miss her too much. And guess what the surprise is, if dad says yes, dad and little one can come with us too . “

Me left with a heart spilling over …

The thing is kids don’t see the world the way we do. They only see black and white. If they love something, they adore it. If they don’t they say things that aren’t so nice. It’s us adults who keep filling in the colors and making the world a few shades darker or lighter as the case may be.

Today, he kept repeating, ” So and So is not my friend. ” I said, ” why are you saying that. All your classmates are your friends.”

” Well ” , he pouts, ” So and so said he’s not my friend . ”

I hurt for the way he might have felt on hearing that but I went on to explain to him how it’s important to not be mean even if someone says something hurtful. To be nice, for at the end of the day, the words of a person shouldn’t change the way you behave. They are just words and are to be taken as such.

Now, sitting here, I wonder. Do we adults learn to apply this to ourselves? Why is it that we take the words of our fellow beings too seriously and to heart ? Yes, we should all know better. But if someone doesn’t why don’t we just let it pass, instead of holding onto the resentment and making our relationships bitter?

Maybe because it’s easier to mimic and stoop than let go and rise ?!

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