February 07, 2017

A Child's letter

Dear Mom

I wish I could convey all my feelings to you at every stage of my life. I cannot do so due to the lack of necessary emotional and sensory connections in my brain. My brain has not completely developed, it is still growing, learning and making new connections based on what I see around me and how you treat me.

Let me tell you about my journey.

You were elated the moment you knew you were carrying me in your womb. You termed the start of our beautiful journey as painful when you had morning sickness. And then, couldn't bear me within you further when your back/legs started to ache. The more you wanted to see me, the more you were tired of your heavy tummy.
Little did you know, that even I was feeling stressed out when you felt bad.
However your thoughts were, your body was being tuned accordingly and I experienced the same emotions. Being calm and positive would lessen your physical pains, raise your level of mental happiness and in turn keep me happy inside.

Then the day came, when I stepped out of your tummy into this beautiful world. You were again elated carrying me in your arms and showing me all your love. The first two months was learning period for both you and me. You had your so-called postpartum depression and I was coping to adjust in this new world. All this while I was in your womb, it was dark and silent there. All I did was gulp all the food that you sent me. Now, I can sense many things around me, My eye sight has not developed to see objects lying far. I can barely see your face when you carry me. I don't know where I am when I am not carried in arms. I feel content in your arms right now because, though not completely, it gives me a womb-like feeling. Hence I cried and always longed for someone to carry me in my initial days. But, you complained of tiredness to satisfy my need of being carried and nursing often. Love could be shown only by carrying and nursing in that phase.
Little did you know, that even I was feeling stressed out when you felt bad.
However your thoughts were, your body was being tuned accordingly and I experienced the same emotions.

Two months passed by, I can now see a bit clearer and am happy on my own even if not carried. I look around, look at my arms, my fingers, play by joining my hands and legs together and I am happy. Still, I depend on you for my emotional and hunger needs. I call for you when I am hungry. I call for you when I am sleepy. I call for you when I am dirty. I call for you when I want to look at your face. I call for you when I want to hear you. My method of calling you is by sending shrieks of cry. You sometimes attend to me lovingly, sometimes come to me distressed, sometimes feel I am calling you repeatedly. I do not understand how you react each time I call you. I look for your love, mom. You may be tired with your routine chores, but, this time, this moment of young me bonding with you will never come back. Please come to me and show some love.
If you are tired, I feel stressed out too. However your thoughts are, your body is being tuned accordingly and I experience the same emotions.

Now, I can crawl. I crawl to you when you are in kitchen. I want to explore my little world. I pick utensils, make sound with spoons and vessels. You are tired of listening to sounds and ask me not to do it. Show me ways to play, mom. Guide me. Please do not ask me to stop exploring. 

You are excited and loving when I am playing, tired and frustrated when I cry for some emotional need of mine. You don't realise the reason of my tantrum and I do not have the physical and cognitive ability to express my feelings. You give me gadgets so that I stay quiet. I need you, mom. I need your time with me. Teach me emotions, teach me feelings, teach me life.

Most of the time you are with me, I see you talking with something held at your ear. When I call for you, you show me some toys to play with. Other times, when you are feeding, putting me to sleep or doing the daily chores for me, you are either too tired or irritated to talk to me patiently and lovingly. I want to spend some quality time with you mom.

I am now 1.5 yr old. I wake up to see you are not beside me. I cry for you. Already tired with cooking in kitchen, all you want me to do is get off the bed, brush and bathe as and when you ask me to. I cannot do that mom, I am still developing emotional neural connections in my brain. I crave for love. I long for a hug. I want to be consoled. I cannot share with you if I had a disturbed sleep or bad dream. All I can do is, cry, ask you to stay with me or carry me. Please help me in building my emotions. Show some love.

A 2.5 yr old me who can speak your language fluently will still cry for you when you are in kitchen because I cannot talk my feelings. I can talk many words, sing songs, recite poems, but, I cannot talk feelings. Please understand. I will still cry when I do not see you beside me after I wake up. I will still drag myself to kitchen and ask you to carry me because I don't know what I can do in the kitchen and how I can spend time with you. All I want is you and your time with me.

I am now 3 year old. I understand better but still lack some skills. I try to express myself better but still fail in doing it correctly and hence throw tantrums. And now, when you are in kitchen I come there and ask you what you are doing. I ask you if I can handle some of the things. I ask you why you are doing what you are doing. I ask you how long does it take for you to finish. I ask you when you can come to play with me. I can plead you to finish your work fast to play with me. This ability of asking what,why,how has now come into picture and thus I explore. Earlier, when you got irritated upon my repeated intervention in your kitchen chores, neither you realised my state nor did I did have the ability to 'ask' you and talk to you. All I wanted then was being carried.

Soon, I will be better able to do things on my own, no more needing your help. You sure would be happy with it. But, remember mom, if you were only looking at the physical level of this help that I was needing for which you got tired and irritated, let me remind you, beneath the physical help, I was also looking for emotional support. I developed my emotions basing upon your reactions. Rather than just being carried by you, I wanted to be loved by you. When I threw a tantrum, I wanted to be understood by you. I wanted you to understand the reason behind my tantrum and assure me of your support by showing love. But, you brushed away my tantrum and silenced me by showing a fancy item(gadgets).

If you had noticed, behaviour changes as my brain grows. Soon, I will be able to share all my emotions with you in a matured mind set and well formed statement. But, will I want to? Answer to this question depends on how you felt when you had to carry me, nurse me for long hours, how you dealt with my tantrums. how you spent time with me during my childhood (or silenced me by yelling), how you treated me while I was growing, how you taught me what life is, how you showed me the world around.

Sincerely,
Your child.
Thanks for bringing me into this world. 

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