Christmas of 2008, I was an angry kid with too many things to say. The biggest problems in my life were not being able to meet Robert Pattinson and that my education and parents were all that were holding me back from doing just that. So, when my mother admitted to my aunt that day that I would “make a better mother than her”, there was no reaction more appropriate than shock. I hated kids (and still do, to some extent). How could I make a good mother?
Even today, the idea perplexes and scares me. I am not one against the idea of giving all your love to one person. Using that as an excuse would make all my claims of love seem hypocritical. I just wonder how I, or anyone from this generation could raise kids effectively. We are surrounded by mind numbing entertainment sources like The Boohbahs, negativity, increasing levels of corruption and pollution, sedentary lifestyles that aim for more just when you think you’ve got enough. What the fuck is going on? Would I really want to raise a child in such a competitive, rude, unhealthy and ungrateful environment? Added to that, of course, is the guilt of adding some more to the population explosion. Do I really want to go through the physical and emotional trauma just to have a kid who will be bitter about everything anyway?
Yeah, I did not think so.
Being a girl (almost a woman. Pfft) makes you want to give birth to little girls and teach them all the things you never learnt. Teach her to sing better than you, talk better than you, dress better than you, love better than you and be fearless, really. That’s the thing. Everyone wants that and for the right reasons. (Mother, if you read this – do not cry)
But, you know what’s cooler?
To raise a good son.
Apart from the fact that boys are less complicated and I have had enough of girls for the rest of my life, we just don’t have enough good boys. In a world where we blame a man for everything, let me introduce you to The Nice Guy. He is everything the world needs, not wants. He reads, watches movies, has a sense of humour, is approachable, a good friend, loves his family, has no hang-ups about anything. But, you know, above all he is a good person.
How do you build this child? Teach him to love reading. No, really. I am grateful to my mother for making me love stories. It has decided my career path, for one. Teach him to love people. Teach him to love experiences. Teach him to love music.
Teach him to love.
To be unafraid of it in whatever form it comes. To be unafraid of making mistakes. To be unafraid to admit mistakes. To be unafraid to stand up for himself and for others, if needed. Be unapologetic about his choices.
Isn’t that a wonderful child? Now, you can ask me again. Why a SON?
Let me tell you this. For all the nice boys I have encountered and liked, I have thanked God for the parents who raised them. Someday, someone else will be grateful for mine. The day this kid of mine grows up and someone tells me, “You have raised a lovely son.” and I watch him/her smile, I’ll know I have done my bit.