Those Little Eyes

In a world where everyone’s asking you what you’ve achieved, what you’ve done with your life, it feels so easy to lose track of what’s important. When everything around you costs money. When you wake up one day and realize your bills are sky high and your bank account’s buried under the ground, it’s normal to feel the need to lock yourself up at work. When your partner’s fighting with you, when that silly little thing they do becomes the last thing you need that day and you end up screaming your head off and storming out, it’s almost impossible to want to go back home.

But I want you to. I want you to walk around the streets, take as many deep breaths as you need and go back inside that home. Because you know what your struggles are. You know why you’re angry, why you’re upset. But there’s a pair of little eyes watching from a half closed door that doesn’t. And it’s your duty to ensure they never do.

My mother often says, “A child should know the suffering of a parent or they’ll never understand how much we go through just to keep a roof over their head and food on their plate, day after day.”

I know so many people that agree with her, but I don’t.

My theory is as simple as this – If you, as an adult, cannot fix this, there is no way that your child can. And if you, as an adult, cannot handle the emotional turmoil that comes with this problem, what makes you think your child can?

“But they have to understand that we cannot afford everything they want.”

And here’s the thing. Have you seen a shopaholic? The girl in the big city with a flashy card that buys everything she will ever want? She always looks like she has the perfect life. Shopping all the time. Must feel fantastic to be able to afford all that. Here’s the perspective you don’t see. When we have an entire week off, besides resting, we try to spend some time with our family and friends. The people we love. If we had all the money in the world, we’d be taking them on a vacation.

When your child is looking for anything and everything money can buy, I want you to stop and look at something bigger than that tantrum. That shopaholic may be filling an emotional void with materialistic things and your child is no different. The kid in the park playing with his parents isn’t giggling because they bought him a park. He doesn’t understand real-estate value. He understands the hand holding and the push on a swing.

Sometimes, the best birthday present you can ever give to your child is, “I’m going to spend the entire day with you. What do you say we go on a hike and grab some ice cream on the way home?” It’s an inexpensive plan. But it’s the most precious thing in the world because you’re giving them something money will never buy – your time.

You have a million things to deal with in your life. And though we all wish it to be different, there is a very high possibility that when the time comes your child will go through them as well. So don’t rush them into it. If they can’t fix it, they don’t have to know.

Because your child loves you. They were born loving you. When you tell them your problem, they want to fix it for you. When they know they can’t, it turns them into a mess. Always remember, your child is a mirror. They reflect what they see in you. Don’t you want to raise a happy and loving child?

I’m 22 now. I went to university, I have friends, I have a life of my own. There is nothing I wouldn’t give to spend a day watching TV with my mom, laughing and gossiping about nothing. Or go sit at the beach with my dad and talk about old stories and philosophical nothings. We may grow up and take on the world. We may live this whole, busy life that consumes us every minute of the day. But the moment we look at you, we go back to being that same little kid, with our nose stuck to the window, waiting for you to come home.

You may fight with them. Life may come between you more times than one. But those little eyes watching through a half closed door, all they ever want is for you to turn and say “I love you.”

So go pick up that phone and say it.

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64 thoughts on “Those Little Eyes

  1. nikkidesrosiers says:

    An amazing post. I totally agree with you – I think there is value to teaching children that you can’t afford everything and more- they need to know the value of a dollar – but you shouldn’t let them see you hurt and struggle – because it does affect them emotionally. Teach them that time and love are more important than money and you will raise a happy, well rounded child. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Arundhati Mukherjee says:

    When we grow up, we can take on the tough world and the uncertainties of adult life encashing our one true feeling of security within. I think, the first sense of security and trust that our parents provide enables us throughout our life to survive all other trust breaks and cruelty.
    This is important. Thank you for bringing this up. Very nicely written 🙂

  3. Kim Gringolet says:

    If a person values money the most, what will they end up with having most of in the end?

    Children need to know the value of a dollar, but if a parent always says they can’t spend money on the little things ([parties, movies, ice cream) because they’re frivolous, not necessary, not important, etc., then will the child value money more than the time spent together with family? It’s a balancing act, for sure.

    This blog brought up good points, and memories for me. Thanks for posting!

    • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

      Very good point.
      I was always surrounded by parents that would spend for anything as long as they had sufficient money to do so. Sometimes, I’ve seen parents spend money they don’t have to keep their child happy. So I never even thought of that point. 🙂
      Thank you for reading and the comment 🙂

  4. amylynna says:

    I love this! I have a daughter so I can relate! Love how raw and to the point it is. Stirred up emotions in me. Great job! I’m new to this blogging but maybe you could check mine out? http:/www.burntfries.wordpress.com

  5. cmmenut says:

    So glad you got past writer’s block. I have five children, and two of them came home for Christmas from 1200 miles away. It was like they had never left home. I miss them and I wish I could bubble wrap them and protect them forever from the world. But, I know they have to life their lives. I have a 17 year old who will move out sometime at the end of this year. My two younger ones are 8 and 6. They trickle out of our lives, but never far from our hearts. Great post!

    • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

      I am definitely glad to have gotten rid of it as well ! 😀
      In a way, I guess I like the fact that in India, unless we’re literally moving out of the city, we tend to live with our parents till we get married. Men get to live with their parents even after, should they choose to. There are moments when I’d do anything for a little time away from them but when taking in the big picture, I’m definitely happy staying where I am.
      Thank you so much 🙂

      • cmmenut says:

        That is something not very many families do here in the USA. People move out too soon and dont take care of each other. Teens rebell and move out, then they struggle. Older people are put into homes to die. People in other cultures and countries take care of their family members and tend to stay together longer.

      • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

        I think, here too, a lot of older people are sent to homes and it’s terribly looked down on. Also, I always liked the idea of moving out at some point. Maybe not every Indian thinks this way, but like I’ve always said, my thought process is scattered. I kind of wanted my own life and my own rules for a little while at least before jumping into a new life with someone else. The space to just be me has been a long-time goal. Still working on it. 🙂

  6. alanjryland says:

    You rock! Time should never be wasted on what amount to, in the grand scheme of things, silly trivialities. Someone who loves is always wealthy.

  7. jcm3rockstar says:

    Such an exciting and real-life post; I enjoyed reading it. We never really want to grow up. We do. As parents we do what we can to explain. As children we do what we can to understand. You are a great writer and I enjoyed your post. I hope you have a wonderful career. Have you written a book? Is it on http://www.goodreads.com? Such a terrible and long and impossible goal it is to do, until you have. Stephen King used to write about five pages a morning; I found that to be inspirational.

    Nice post; here is where I am on the web…

    jcm3blog
    oval magazine (Send us a 500+ word story to subs@oval-magazine.com; we’ll publish it. 🙂 )

    “Acoloftals, ed. 1”

    Keep up the nice work; I more than welcome you to celebrate your ability to compose great fiction with us.

    – @jcm3rockstar (<- twitter name 🙂 )

    • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

      Thank you so much. I never wanted to grow up. For a while there, I wondered if there was possibly a way to turn myself into PeterPan. Turns out, there isn’t. 😦
      I am working on a book. I have been working on it for two years now and I presume it’s going to take me a few more years to get it done. 🙂
      I like the idea of writing five pages every morning. Maybe I’ll just try that every evening seeing how I’m always in a rush in the morning. 😀
      I have a couple of short-stories. I will get in touch with you through twitter or your blog sometime soon. 🙂

      Thank you ! 🙂

  8. Remodeling House and Heart says:

    Love your blog! Totally agree with you on not giving in to every whim that the children bring to me. Its interesting…. when I first read your mom’s quote about allowing children to watch you suffer I wasn’t thinking about finances. I don’t want my kids to ever have to live in fear of no electricity or no food like I sometimes had to. However, I do want them to see me struggle with certain issues so that they can see me as a 3 dimensional person and not just the mom who feeds them. I want to be able to have conversations about love and faith and death and I want them to see that I don’t have it all figured out. If I am having a bad day I hope to be able to share that with them in hopes that they will share with me. Not sure this relates to what you were writing but it was what was flowing through my head as I was reading. 🙂

    • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

      I think it’s actually healthy to be able to have conversations about bad days and the little things adults face everyday. It’s essential for them to know that “mom” isn’t superhero, contrary to what their brain thinks. They’re human, they have their good days and bad. But the money problem is something I always thought a child shouldn’t know. You know, they grow up, they go to school and when they’re old enough to ask why they can’t have what the other kid has, they are also old enough to understand “Because some people make more money than others do. But hey, I’m still here. We’re still a family. That’s more than money.” Maybe that sounds too filmy, but I always thought that was how someone should handle a situation like that. I have just never met someone who did.
      Thank you so much 🙂

  9. taratrinity says:

    My mother often says, “A child should know the suffering of a parent or they’ll never understand how much we go through just to keep a roof over their head and food on their plate, day after day.”

    Disagree. My mother was the same way – it may be a generational thing for our mothers. I teach my son the value of a dollar in very unique ways for him to understand as a 5-year old. Which will allow him to understand a budget when the time comes (and we have a piggy bank for him in the house where he dumps found change and such). But for me, I do struggle many times, however I don’t want to wipe away his innocence.

    As a parent, however, to defend your mother. She did what she needed to do. She’s doing the best she can. Time with our families now are seen to be very important versus the supply and demand mentality. Nowadays, studies have shown that parents are more likely to spend more time with their children than they used to 20 years ago. It’s a nice transition that we are making.

    People also choose now (way more than before when it was just culturally what you should do) more to have children. Parenthood is a sacrifice. But it’s a lovely one at that! Knowing that I am leading a young boy into becoming a gentleman one day helps me more than anything I am doing for him. Parents need to remember that, too.

    • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

      I agree with you when you say it’s a generational thing. I know a lot of my aunts and friends’ moms who are that way as well. I think it’s how they were raised and with time, we’re changing the way we feel about family. I don’t have kids and I’m not very fond of them (my mother assures me it’s a phase that will pass) but should I ever have one, I hope I can find ways to teach them how to be compassionate and kind without being a fool and yes, the value of a dollar without showing them misery.
      I can almost hear my mother say *you might want to be able to cook yourself a meal first* 😛
      Thank you for reading and the comment 🙂

      • taratrinity says:

        You’re 22 right? At 22 I never imagined having children. I never wanted any. I don’t think it’s a phase that will pass–its who you are. However, you’ll learn to have more tolerance for them. For me, my pregnant was unplanned and I made a decision. One everyone was shocked about! Our generation is definitely making great progress on raising children. Similar to the way education is taught in schools (group learning vs teacher dictating in front of classroom)… Parents equally respect children and love them in a more compassionate way. Anyway I’m blabbing! I love your blog and am glad to follow. It’s extremely insightful.

      • LoudThoughtsVoicedOut says:

        Unfortunate for me, I’m born into a very traditional Indian family and have voluntarily made the choice to get an arranged marriage (When I’m ready, maybe 6 or 7 years down the road) I highly doubt my family or his would let us live without a child. It’s the only path – Study -> Earn -> Marry -> Reproduce. So then they can torture the kid to go through the same thing. I will need to put up an entire post about how much that annoys me but it is what it is. 🙂
        I tend to talk a lot too. So I’m actually enjoying your comments. 😀
        Thank you so much 😀

  10. mariaholm says:

    I can’t believe you are only twenty two. I enjoyed your post. The children long for the parents and the parents long for genuine contact with their children. But sometimes the old episodes of disappointments come between us when we should have time together like vicious circles. I am striving to make up for that and regain the lost

  11. Pingback: Maybe – Lerology

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