A letter to my just born child

Dear child,

I once wrote a letter to your elder sister before she was born (read here) and I wanted to do the same for you. But then I thought why do it exactly the same way? You are going to be different from your sister, even though both of you come from the same parents. I have seen so many siblings in my life and marveled at how 2 kids born of the same parents can be so different!

So I decided to write this post after you came in this world.

When the nurse handed you over to me, I held you confidently. I raised an amazing 2 year old girl, how could I not be confident? But I quickly realized, you could be a totally different kid. I want you to know that you need not be like Pranaya. Your amma & I, like all parents in the world, will love you regardless.

Love for me, simply put, is that your dreams, your comfort, your well being is more important to me than mine. Simple, no?

I am in deep love with Pranaya. The kind of love that I didnt know was possible. When I fell in love with your amma, everything became beautiful and I was 13 (yes, that little!) at that time & then 21, I think when I again met her. The love at 13 was the most I could love a girl, & at 21 it was even more strong. But nothing even comes close to the love one has for their kids. I am telling you this now, because maybe sometime in your life you might feel differently.

I want to talk to you about luck. You would read quotes about how luck is all about working hard, and that it is non-existent. I think it is real. I have no idea what did I do right to have such amazing daughters, first Pranaya and now you. I dont know why your amma thought it was a good decision to spend her life with me (I have asked her numerous times through thinly veiled questions). I have no idea what good I did to have the parents that I do. Luck is how I explain it.

On the other hand, I have no idea why I havent had the luck in work. Got into top schools at the last and got out at the top, mostly through sheer hard work. Dont understand why some of my less hard working friends have better jobs? I dont get why my hard work hasnt got its due. Luck is how I explain it.

Some things are not within our control. Media, newspapers, celebrities tell us that they are. What is within our control is to give our best. Newspapers print the names of the kids who top various exams. They then take their interviews, ask them for tips for aspirants. Why? What is so special about getting 750 marks our of 750 that makes it news? Shouldnt they cover stories of resilience? Where some kid living in sub par conditions who came 25th? Isnt that better news?

News is not of much use. Nobody is going to gain wisdom through a second hand account of what is happening in Syria, or the US, or even Vidarbha. Wisdom in our times is underrated. Information is overrated. Only follow this advice if by the time you are 8 years old, your daddy has made a name for himself. Else choose to ignore. That is true for this entire letter. Not everything that I say is correct. My knowledge is a culmination of what has happened in the last 30 years of my life. My biases, my fortune & misfortune colour my ideas.

The core of Human spirit is freedom. We all aspire to be free. But society has made systems that will reward you a little, every time you let go of a little freedom. You want food everyday on your table, give 8 hours driving a truck, or painting a wall, or making excel files and ppts. Want your teacher to praise you for that assignment, that is actually not going to add much value to your knowledge? Spend the night working on it and skip the planet watching that you had planned.

That said, do whatever you do with passion. Easier said than done. You can only do things with passion when your wants/needs dont plague what you want to spend time on. Trust me, if you want that latest iphone (hopefully they stop) or that Merc (guilty), much of your time will be spent on earning money and not so much on what you like. I havent learnt how to do that, hope you do, then teach me.

I am saying all of this as I am afraid that as time passes, I will no longer be able to make sense of your generation and maybe then, this post written by your dad at 31, might make some sense.

Staying happy is the aim of life I have found. Being happy is an art and good art happens when what you think, what you do & what you speak is in alignment. Everything I do for you would be directed towards this. If you ever feel that I am not being true to this, please remind me, I tend to forget.

In closing, I wish you find what you love, and find the courage to do what you love. I hope you find happiness in your life. Love, courage & a heart that seeks happiness, my child, will lead you a long way.


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