Thursday, October 14, 2004

Day 2, Mothers & Daughters, Fathers & Sons.... (Neil Diamond bless you)

After some pretty encouraging comments and emails, I'm ready to roar (being a Leo, it comes kinda naturally). Have actually been resisting posting a message since the morning, waiting for inspiration to strike, to come across something meaningful, but then I checked myself: this is not a report or an article, or a story, it's a blog. So free-flowing it's gonna be. Like last evening when I was driving back home, I saw a young twentysomething driving a car, a lady who looked like her grandmom in the passenger seat next to her and a lady who liked like her mother in the back seat. Now while the young girl and her grandmom chatted freely the mother was sitting quietly, looking out of the window. This could totally be my own imagination at work (the lady in the back may not even be related to the others, in fact none of them could be related) but you know, I was struck by a thought. How come we bond so well with our grandparents yet feel this uneasy tension with parents? This is more so when you're younger and whoever said teens are the best years got it so wrong. Grandparents on the other hand seem to understand the exuberance of youth -- maybe it's a state they long for or maybe they're nearing it, remember old age is like a second childhood -- and resist the temptation of watering it down. Also, I think their crows-feet creases have seen enough suns and moons to realise that there is no point trying to school your child in your ways: ultimately they will do exactly as they wish, and will learn only from their own mistakes. This, I think, sets them apart from parents, who, in an attempt to avoid doing to their children what wrong they think their parents did to them, end up doing exactly that. Poor parents! Treading that fine line is not easy; to be a better parent than your parents and yet to try and understand and accommodate your child's preferences, however weird and crazy they seem, isn't easy. I know there are many parents who, trying to be over pally with their kids, end up getting it all horribly mixed up, and I've seen young boys and their fathers; there is such an awkward tension in the air. An acknowledgement of each other's presence yes, but an acknowledgement of each other's existence: no.
Wonder if Karan Johar, who tried to make Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham to address this question (why do we stop hugging our fathers or telling them we love them) found the answers?

4 Comments:

Blogger Jabberwock said...

yes, well, what was that platitude about grandchildren being your reward for not having killed your own children...

Or as Philip Larkin more cynically put it:

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were sloppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.
Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don't have any kids yourself.

13 October, 2004  
Blogger randomguru said...

GSB,
don't take the advice literally:)

14 October, 2004  
Blogger writer-in-egg-style said...

Oedipus was smart because he cracked the Sphinx's riddle: 'who walks on fours in the morning, twos at noon and threes in the evening'? Man, said Oedipus, but the poor fella is remembered only by Freud's parent-fixation complex, by which your relationship with the other gender will forever be governed deep down, subconsciously, by your relationship with your own other-gender parent.

Well, there are also people who walk on fours in the evening, and who debunk fixations of all kinds, and who see no reason that relationships need to be so dogmatically defined and culturally codified.

16 October, 2004  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

remember "ready to roar"... and "comes naturally", Leo?

why's the bloggin got so slow?

16 June, 2006  

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