You learn

Years ago, while living in Canada, I was at my Pakistani friend’s house when the postman delivered the mail. She is a very traditional Pakistani woman and I didn’t agree to a lot  of her parenting ideologies. She wouldn’t let her kids attend the school dance, prom etc and was paranoid about every second her kids spent outside her home. But what happened that day was something I will never forget.

So, she collected the mail from the mail box. Rushed inside, quickly opened the letter and then yelled “yesss”

I thought she won the lottery and can you believe how shocked I was when I learned that what she was holding was an Infringement notice (skipping the red light) from RCMP with a photo of her son’s car skipping the red light.

I thought my friend had gone in to shock, how else can you explain such a weird reaction.

After seeing my puzzled face, she explained

“You have no idea, how many days I have been waiting for something like this. My son had recently got his license and I was worried about him speeding. There is nothing more terrifying than receiving a ticket from the police. It teaches you that you are not a kid anymore, but an adult and there are rules to follow and consequences to face for not following the rules. After today, my son will be even more cautious while driving”

I thought about and felt she was right and saved the lesson in my head.

My son got his first speeding ticket. 20 KM over the limit!. He not only had to pay 259$ fine, he will have to drive like a granny till next April, cause if he gets one more demerit point, he will lose his license.

You have no idea how long I have been waiting to receive this particular letter. When my son came home, I gave him the letter and left it at that.I didn’t yell at him. I didn’t scold him.  which is even more harder for kids to deal with, for they are used to being admonished for doing something wrong. But now he is almost an adult, he doesn’t need admonishing. He needs to man up and face life.. He was miserable, but I do know that this was a really valuable lesson.

 

Enjoy the ride

I know the blog updates are becoming rather infrequent.

Here is the thing. I have reached a point in my life where I decided to please the only person who matters. And in this case that is me.

James Taylor sang the secret of life is to enjoy the passage of time (Secret 0 Life) and that is what I have been doing,

I stopped stressing on things that doesn’t matter.

One of the major thing was my children’s education. Although I am no way a pushy mother when it comes to my children’s education, I have always been worried about them getting somewhere in life. I wanted to give them the best opportunities. When Yaya declined UCLA, UCSD etc admission offers, I was disappointed. But I had always given her the right to choose and she is happy where she is. I now teach students who wrote the Gamsat exam with me. I would have been one of them if I wasn’t deaf.  I find it really odd that I teach them now. Life is really funny at times eh?. One of my student is a famous researcher whose papers I have read. After completing her PhD and Post doc, she decided to do medicine and wrote  Gamsat. The thing is, after PhD, you are not entitled to receive student loan, so she is self supporting herself by working 20 hours each week and living in a share home. I have another brilliant student who has done PhD in Chemical engineering and then felt that is not what he wanted to do and is now doing Medicine (Again self supporting by doing construction labour). I have a student who is the only child of a single mother with questionable past ( her words, not mine) and doesn’t know who her father is and determined to change her destiny. Interacting with students from various backgrounds, I have learned that if you want to get somewhere, then you can. All you need to do is to work for it.

Hardest part for me as a mother was to stand aside and watch.. When Yaya was in grade 12, during her study hols before the finals, she read novels. She even worked when she had two days off between her exams. It is the same with my son. He is currently binge reading Jeffrey Archer novels. His finals will start end of this month. I only ever studied just before the exams. So not studying when you are on study holidays used to bother me a great deal. But not anymore.

So all in all, I have changed. I decided to enjoy the passage of time doing things I want to do. In this instance, I stopped fretting.