How to daddy...correctly!

Writing is like swimming. Even if you dont do it for a few months, or years for that matter when you go back to it, you struggle a little bit but then find your way. The most important part is to dip your legs in the cold water and once you do it then it is easy from that point on. But before you actually do it in real life, you gotta do it in your head, you have to imagine floating in the calm waters of your housing society's swimming pool. Ditto for writing. Only here you have to imagine sitting and typing at a blank sheet, hoping it all makes sense and then the millennial readers that you have (all 4 of them) take time out from Buzzfeed or scoopfeed or whatever that kids are reading these days to come on the site and appreciate what's been written.

Talking about kids, I have interns now who were born when I was hitting puberty. I have named them after the movies that came out in the year they were born. So I have a Dil toh pagal hai in my team, a DDLJ and even a Hum aapke hai kaun (he has work experience). I also have someone who I thinks is Andaz apna apna but she isnt revealing her birth year to anyone. I am of course, Rambo 4.

So I have realized you cant hit on women who were born when you had started getting facial hair. They automatically make you think of your daughters.

Now coming to the reason why all of you subscribe to my blog and have been refreshing the home page everyday for the past 200 odd days - to gain from my meandering experience and unlimited wisdom.

So, how to daddy? Not to brag or anything, I am particularly good at this job. I have a small fan club, comprising of currently just 1 member, my 4 year old daughter, but we are in the process of making new members, which is, my 2 year old daughter. With an amazing success rate of 50% which as Warren Buffet tells you is the exact number of times you have to be right while picking stocks to be rich, I share with you how to bring up kids with my 6 years (4+2, see how I did what those mahesh tutorial ads did?) of experience in doing the same.

Disclaimer: This is applicable to the angels my daughters are (they obviously take after me). Dont blame me if you were a brat while growing up and had to be disciplined weekly. Also not applicable if you have a couple of boys. In fact, God help you!

So here goes.

1. Indulge the kids: Having kids is a chance to grow up all over again. Having two kids, is a chance to lengthen that chance. There are things that they feel are important that might seem trivial to you, like tying those two ropelike things in a frock that you tie behind in a bow (what the hell are those called?), like the colour of the hair tie, the choice of soap, the need to brush their teeth at 8 in the evening. The point is, indulge. When you are small, small things seem important. This is also true of your colleagues in office.

2. Be their friend (coz once they grow up, they wouldnt want anything to do with you): Who's your best friend? Why are they your best friend? Be that to your kids. Exactly that. Coz that works for you and your friendship. And while you are at it, also check with that friend if they think you are their best friend too. If not, where did it all go wrong? Find it out and dont be that with your kids. It's that simple, only if we dont complicate it. This is true for all relationships

3. Make silly games for them: Kids get bored easily. No number of Hamley toys are going to cure that boredome. Btw, stay away from Hamleys, that place is evil. It can make even the strongest men want toys they thought they never wanted at prices they would never pay. Also for kids like me with deprived childhoods, it is a way to re-live our desires via our kids. I told you, Evil they are!

Instead make silly games for them. Whenever my kids fight, I made a game that points at the crying kid and say "NO" and they have to play with an action, like hiding their face. This game then expanded to Yes, no, maybe game and further to yes, no, maybe, coco. Now it's our favourite time pass.

4. Make sure kids know the value of things and not their cost:

 Like I said, it is an opportunity to grow up again. It is importnat not to make the same mistakes most of us 80s kids did. Along with the value of things, 80s India also knew their cost. 5 rupees for a loaf of bread, 50 paise for kismi toffee bar, with math came conversion, the realization that 10 toffee bars could give 1 loaf of bread, and that 10 loaves of bread were equal to that 1 toy you been wanting for a year, and you keep delaying it, because your 10 year old brain cant get to spending those many loaves of bread on a toy. Then you are 15 and the time to play with that toy is gone. Forever.

Dont do that. Do the exact opposite. Let them know the value, not the cost. Also dont let them know trivial things in your life, like EMIs, how much money you make and how costly the world is becoming. There is plenty of time for them to learn this. Let them be kids. For now.

5. Make stories for them. Name characters after them and their friends: I like telling stories. Duh! That is how I got my wife to marry me. Some brilliant story weaving there. Anywho, my 4 year old doesnt sleep without hearing her bedtime story. Most of it is made up. I have figured, mythology is her favourite, so I modernize it. Shiva stays on the 8th floor (like us), Sita has a red sofa (like us), Ram likes to eat healthy and Krishna is strong because he eats almonds and milk everyday. In every story there are 2 common characters - Pranaya (thats my elder daughter) & Manjiri ( that is my sister, her buwa). Girls that she has a fight with in school become the side villans in my stories, her best friends make special appearances in the same dress that they wore a a birthday party, btw.

I think she's reading through all of this maybe. she asked me the other day - Daddy, Sita's house is so much like our house no? I had to tone it down from there.

6. Give them a bath once every now and then and make it fun: We turn on the bluetooth speaker, bring the pichkaaris and it's holi everyday while taking a bath. The kids love it and on my days off look forward to it. It is also a good time to introduce them to brilliant 90s music. Baba Sehgal is not a name to be forgotten.

7. Kiss them Good morning and Good night. We Indians dont do this enough. Nothing is going to make the kids feel safe and loved as much as physical touch of their parents. Animals do this constantly because they cant talk, but neither can children, at least not properly till they are 6 or 7. This I have found also helps me sleep better and my general well being. Also try to extend this to the wife.

This is all that I can think of, right now. I will keep coming back to it and read it and edit if I learn something new or something doesnt quite work well with the younger one. That is the badmash one. Still an angel compared to your boys. Adios.
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