Thursday, August 21, 2008

Child's play

Raising kids must be anything but. First there's the carrying the baby to term, and all the challenges that come with that. Then the kid is born and for a significant period of time, can't talk. I dread being left alone with babies mainly because when they cry [not if], I'll have no idea what they want. No idea if this cry indicates there's something seriously wrong and you need to call someone. There's the fear of dropping them, the fear that they'll suffocate or something in their sleep; the list is endless.

If you survive that stage, you'll need to develop some superhuman patience to handle them once they can talk and run around. Waa. The thing is to remind yourself that these are kids, doing what kids do. Fight the urge to get worked up when things are tossed all over, instructions aren't followed, and things are generally hectic. I think women are equipped with some stuff to raise kids that guys don't have. Single dads must be superman.

When they start going to school, you have a new set of things to worry about. I remember a workmate saying sometime back when asked stuff they'd like to change/do in their lives. Spend more time with her son she said. If I had kids I probably would never see them. Then again, I was lucky to see my dad once a week when I was growing up, and I turned out fine. Fine enough.

Then they become young adults and the house is a war zone. Cold war, or all out war. It's like a condition for teenagehood. If you're lucky, the kid will turn out OK. If you're lucky. Will be a reasonable member of society. According to the model anyhow. Then they move out and go on to their lives. Those are lonely days when the house is empty and you've retired and stuff. People in other parts of the globe travel the world and stuff. Not sure what guys here do. Again, if you're lucky, the kids will care for you and stuff when you get to that stage when everything in the body starts to break down. That's a tricky situation for parent and child. Awkward.

But guys do it. It's not easy and the guys who decide not to have kids shouldn't be crucified. I can hardly take care of myself so I can't even begin to imagine how I would care for someone else. The model says it's one of the things a jamaa does, but the model is not for everyone.


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