Prakriti, a 30 years old beautiful lady who has been blessed with a baby girl just three years back. She was dead against with the concept of day care or Nanny for her little angel. So, she quit her job after she was awarded with the prestigious designation 'Mommy'. Prakriti is settled with her husband in New Jersey. After completion of her PhD in Environmental Science, she was employed in a private US company as a soil toxicity analyst. She was continents away from her family and friends for the sake of her marriage. So, naturally in United States her daughter was that one person whom she used to feel the strongest biological connection with. As her husband leaves for work in early morning, Prakriti shares a heavenly moment with Rene (her 3 years old daughter) all day long. Prakriti can observe a beautiful mixed impression of her own and that of her husband in Rene's physique. She is growing up slowly, developing keen interest and curiosity about almost anything and everything on this earth. Prakriti was always a little shy (not introvert) from her childhood. Moreover, in the posh western society of New Jersey, it is not a very common practice to have a lovey-dovey relationship with neighbors. As a consequence, both mommy and daughter didn't have any so called social good friend there. This fact built an intense soul to soul attachment within them. The parents decided to send Rene to kindergarten from next year. Every time when Prakriti's in laws make a phone call or have a video chat, they never miss to remind the new mother that "Promise us, you people will not get settled in States. Please bring our Rene up as an Indian child with Indian values and morals. . Most importantly, we don't want to see an American child in our grand daughter."Some time Prakriti feels so helpless being all alone there.With a growing kid, she has to cook, has to do the laundry, has to pay the household bills in time, has to do the cleaning and dusting. The sense of 'she is strictly ordered to bring her daughter up as an Indian and not as an American' makes Prakriti nervous. Finding her little daughter passing her time with iPad in her hand when Prakriti is not around or busy in kitchen or laundry, assured her that somehow she is not being able to grow up an Indian in Rene. She is all engrossed in American TV shows and cartoon channels rather in toys and dolls that have been sent to her from India. In the meantime, Prakriti's father visited her place in New Jersey and met Rene for the very first time. Prakriti discussed her problems with him.
Prikriti: " Dad, I am unable to pay my full attention to Rene as I am the only one who has to do all the households all alone when her father is on tour."
Dad: "But you chose this life on your own. Even you too don't want your child to be a nerd. But without any friends and family how can you expect her to be a social bee."
Prakriti: "But unlike our Indian society the American kids don't exchange their play zones to make friends and their own little worlds."
Dad:"I understand beta. But is it really necessary to have human friends to engage Rene in creative and social activities. Do you remember your childhood days beta? What made you so fond of nature that you finally decided to dedicate yourself in the study of nature and excelled in your field ?"
Prakriti: "I miss those days a lot Dad. How beautiful those days were!!"
Dad: "If I am not mistaking you too didn't have a huge friend circle. Most of the time you used to be in garden, with seasonal flowers, with vegetable plants, with your pet dog Skubo. Had you ever felt that you don't have friends or felling terribly bored. From those days actually I and your mom observed a great environmental scientist budding inside you. Its not always the choice of carrier. But it is always about the sense of responsibility towards nature around us."
Few days later Prakriti's father bought some flower plants of different colors, a peat moss and some bonsai from nearby nursery and planted in the unused grass land in their backyard. Little Rene was full of excitement as this gardening activity was all new to her. She observed carefully how her Dadu is pushing the shovel into the ground and hacking away at grass. The growing mountain of soil by the side turned Rene's new play zone. She started helping her Dadu in planting and gardening.
Dadu: "Don't bury the plants too deep Rene. They won't grow properly otherwise."
Rene: "Which color of flowers will come out from this plant Dadu?"
Dadu: "Most probably red or pink."
Rene: "When will they come out?"
Dadu: "Very soon. But for smooth growing of these plants you have to water them regularly beta. Otherwise they will definitely die in strong sun."
One day, in dinner table Prakriti asked Rene "So baby, it seems like you are enjoying the gardening very much with Dadu, huh??".
Rene with a big smile , "Yes mom, if I will water those plants regularly they will turn into big trees one day. The rabbits, the bears, the birds, the giraffes, the zebras all will come and will stay in my garden. They are in big trouble as people are cutting the trees off and they have no place to live in."
Dadu with a loving smile: "I can see one more naturalist just like my daughter."
One fine morning Prakriti's father woke up and found her daughter not inside house. She called her and found she has left her cellphone in bedroom. Rene was sleeping like a pure little rain drop in her own cot. When Dadu and Rene was having breakfast Prakriti opened the door and entered with a little cane basket in her hand.
Rene: "What's that?"
Dadu didn't ask any question though but he seemed equally curious towards the basket. Prakriti was smiling with her eyes shining bright. She told her father ,"Dad, thanks to you. But from last few days I am overwhelmed seeing Rene's sense of responsibility towards those tiny little growing plants. So I thought of one more friend for my little girl. She is growing up after all". When she opened the basket a little furry puppy started peeping out from the basket.
"Its a doggie", Rene shouted in excitement . "Is it my doggie Mom?"
Prikriti:" Yes, its yours."
Rene was so happy , she couldn't resist herself from dancing, jumping, laughing and shouting in endless joy. Unlike those plants, this friend can blink it's eyes, can walk around her, can eat food and drink milk from bowl just like her.
Dad: "Prakriti, I am quite sure now, that you are no more feeling guilty of not bringing your daughter up properly. It's not important whether she is growing up as an Indian or an American kid. But it is more important that she is growing up as wonderful kid who is very much responsible and loving towards nature.
Prakriti: "You are right Dad. I still remember the day when mom took Skubo our home. At that very young age unknowingly I built a strong connection with him. I enjoyed motherhood with my Skubo. When Scubo fell sick I allowed neither you nor Mom to nurse him. The entire care was taken by me."
Little Rene was running after that new guest all the day long. Sometime she was asked by her Mom or Dadu not to disturb that little puppy too frequently. It is new to their home and will take some time to get used to. But it was too difficult to bring Rene out of her innocent excitement. She was not ready to leave her little puppy alone for a second. As the days passed on, the little puppy was also found in the garden area accompanying Rene and Dadu in gardening. Prakriti has two kids now to take care of. She is thankful to her Dad for getting help at right time. That little doggie has two mothers and often feels confused in between the two authorities. Rene is exploring a cute innocent motherhood, very much busy in nourishing the growing plants and the puppy.
Three months passed and now it is Dadu's turn to fly back home. In these three months Dadu witnessed a drastic change in that little girl's behavior. In the former days Rene was attached to those lifeless electronic gadgets the most. But today she is surprisingly behaving like a responsible nature lover who never skips to water her plants once or twice in a day. When those little plants will be transformed into big trees, she is planning to give shelter to the rabbits, the birds, the bears, the giraffes, the zebras in her own garden. She is so caring and loving to her puppy. Dadu bought a fish bowl too for her and her number of friends got extended by two or three. She feeds the fishes daily thrice in a day and strongly demands to change the water inside the bowl whenever she finds it turbid.
Prakriti: "Please stay here Dad for few moths more. I need you. Rene needs you the most."
Dad: "Don't worry. Your daughter is very intelligent and sensible just like you. She has learned how to save the nature, how to love the animals. This lesson has been deep rooted inside her in last three months and I think she will carry it long way in her life. "
Rene is now four years old and can attain the phone calls and video chat on her own, when her Mom remains busy in other stuffs. She shows her plants in garden to her grandparents, gives detail description on how her puppy jumps on her and licks her cheeks when she comes back from school. They have ordered a bigger fish bowl as she wants more fishes as her friends. Grandparents feel overwhelmed seeing Rene's lovely activity. Finally, when Prakriti joins Rene in video call, every time they admit Rene is an amazing kid and the entire credit goes to Prakriti.
What if the space scientists come up with a ground shaking invention of a 'life giving and emotion mapping' device for the nearby planets to Earth !!! 'Eureka'!! I'm pretty sure, one of the strong conclusions established by that wondrous device would be something like in the picture below.
- We should teach our children to plant trees and have to make them realize how important the trees are to keep the temperature and pollution level in control.
- Instead of recognizing the model numbers, price ranges and detail specifications of mobiles and tabs and laptops we should encourage them to recognize different plants, birds, insects and animals.
- Try to bring the pet lover out of your kid. Indirectly it will help the kid to be compassionate, helpful, loving and responsible in a nuclear family environment . It's not always about me and myself.
- Always remind them to switch the lights and fans off before leaving the room.
- Encourage the young generation not to use non-biodegradable materials. As for example, the jute bags can be amazing and fashionable alternate to plastic bags.
- The lesson, 'cleanliness is godliness' must be deep rooted from very early age.
- Be very strict regarding the wastage of food and water as a child dies every five seconds as a result of hunger. For some a snack, for some a day's meal. So not wasting food is always a good virtue.
- At last, kids always learn and adapt from what we do, not from what we teach or preach.
Be Green, Be Safe & Be Healthy
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