This is my second letter to you after a long time and this one is proving a lot more difficult to write. But I’ve sat on it long enough, no more putting it off.
I’ll begin at the beginning…
I know it’s tough being pushed out into a world full of unfamiliar people. It’s tough finding your feet, trying to make sense of this crazy place and so I do understand why you seek out your sister every time. She is the one constant person in your life, the one person who, perhaps, knew you even before you were born. I understand why you want to stick with your friends or follow your mama around.
However, and now I come to the tough part, you need to realise that no one.. absolutely no one... is worth clinging to or following BLINDLY.. not your sister, not your friends, not papa, not even mama.
Oh yes I know there have been times when you have asked me ‘why?’ and I’ve answered with a ‘because I said so’. But don’t.. don’t accept that, not even from me. Give me a hard time by all means but USE YOUR BRAINS.. always. I know that by giving you this advice I might well be laying down battle lines for the future, but I’m game.
Doing what makes you happy, being yourself is more important than being anyone’s shadow, no matter how wonderful that person is.. doing what YOU want is more important than doing what you see someone else doing or doing what someone else wants you to do. It is tough I know but it’ll make you happier, that’s a guarantee.
So for now…
Don’t hit someone just because your best friend told you to without asking why.
Don’t stop cycling to play ball with your friends if that makes you unhappy.
Don’t wear a kurta pajama just because your sister is wearing her chaniya choli.
Eat your lollipop by all means without waiting for your sister.. if that makes you happy.
Different things make different people happy. Loving others, enjoying their company, trying to fit in are great, but never ever forget to listen to your brains and your heart. Giving up what you like for the sake of someone you love is wonderful but not always, and certainly not if it makes you unhappy or if you don’t think it’s right.
Your own happiness is of utmost importance.. an unhappy person can never make others happy. I repeat myself I know.. but this is important.
ee Cummings put it well…
To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. ~e.e. cummings, 1955.
You do pretty well on your own too. When I put you and your sister in different sections I was apprehensive.. yes even I underestimated your courage and your resilience. But you settled in. And you’re learning fast .. coming home with nuggets of knowledge everyday that never fail to surprise and delight me.. You don’t need to depend on anyone for no one is stronger or smarter than you.
I can’t sign off, however, without adding that if you do ever exhaust your courage and need a hand to hold, if you do ever feel lost and need someone to help you make a decision your father and I are here... always… waiting to help yet hoping you never need it.