• We are at an electronics store. We are waiting while the gadget that we want is being organised. A 3-year old child is constantly pulling his mom’s dupatta and saying something in a whining mode. The mother tries to say some soothing words. There’s no effect on the child and he continues to whine. She ignores him for a while. And the clinging, whining and pulling of dupatta continues. She explains patiently. Still, the whining continues. I ask, “What does the child want?”. She says, “A charger!!” I am amused. A charger which he does not need, but since he has seen it, he wants it and no amount of cajoling, explanation will soothe him. And the whining continues…
  • At a get-together, a 4-year old wants to play with Mom’s hair. It was hot and unlocking the hair clip and pulling the hair back in the clip in an unruly manner, again and again, was a bit irritating for even the onlookers. The mom tells the child to stop, calmly first, then in a bit stern voice and finally she lost it!!
  • At a home, a 4-year old is crying so loudly, that it worried even the neighbours. Reason for crying… the child wants to wear a particular T-shirt which due to some reasons, the mother didn’t wanted him to wear! A firm ‘No’, different options, diverting his attention to something else… everything failed to stop the balking child!
  • A mother tells a 3.5-year old to sit on the dining table and finish her milk. She argues that she is responsible and a big girl and will be able to handle her milk glass on the bed. A few minutes of arguments and counter-arguments and finally, the glass ends up with the child on the bed! A few seconds later, the milk is on the bed… the mattress, the sheet and even a pillow is soiled!! The frustration and the anger on the mother’s face was worth capturing!

All these incidents clearly show that the kids are simply being themselves, ie kids!

Sometimes, it’s the temper tantrums, which is a part of growing up and which is age specific too ie most of the children in a particular age-group do go through this… sometimes it’s the fatigue which makes them feel so irritated… sometimes it’s just like that. They don’t call the Terrible Twos or Whiny Threes or Horrible Threes or Threatening Threes!! without any reason! It’s all part of the natural progression in the growth and development of a child!

While we understand the child’s learning curve or the growth pattern, my heart goes out to all the mothers of the little ones… MOLOs

It’s summer vacations for kids here and where ever I go, I see a common expression or state of mind with all young mothers… they are the harried lot!

Their patience is being tested every moment and all through the day as well as the night! This kind of a behavior of the kids can be very nerve-racking! And having to deal with it can put them under a lot of stress. They just can’t wait for the schools (Play schools/Pre-schools) to reopen so that some regular routine would follow and they’d get some time of their own!

No amount of pampering, reason, firmness, patience can calm these screaming, whining, difficult, whimpering kids! And imagine the plight of mother who has to handle such tantrums at irregular intervals in a day! They are at their wit’s end when it comes to dealing with their little ones. And am sure that these mothers can’t wait for their kids to enter the age group of Fortunate Fours! Of course, for some kids, the Terrible Twos and the Horrible Threes last a lil’ longer than specified!

I’d like to make a small prayer, for all the MOLOs…

“God, we give you thanks for having given us children. They are our joy, and we accept with serenity the worries, fears, and labors which bring us pain.

Help us to love them sincerely. Through us you gave life to them; from eternity you knew them and loved them. Give us the wisdom to guide them, patience to teach them, vigilance to accustom them to the good through our example. Amen”