20 August, 2010

Macadamia starts Middle School !!

My dear Macadamia,

Today is indeed a big day for you. Today is the day when you shed the vestiges of primary school and well and truly step into Middle school.

I’ve forgotten how it felt to transition from Primary School to Secondary School. Probably we were busy with scores of other things then and the transition from Primary to Secondary was something that was taken for granted. There was nothing ‘big’ about it back then. It was pretty much like changing plates on the dining table – small ones for breakfast being changed to the big plates for lunch or dinner. No one gave it much thought, except for the fact that the school timings were different. Even the uniforms were the same !

You said yesterday that you are excited about starting Middle school but also a bit nervous. Fair enough, I say ! I can only imagine that feeling – that yearning, that urge to break free of the shackles that held you in Primary school to get a feel of what is definitely a lot more of freedom in Middle School. Yet, there definitely are the flutters of those butterfly wings in your stomach. Those paper thin, flimsy wings which do make their presence felt as they flap around inside your tummy :).

Change – that’s what it is all about. Change,which is the very essence of life. Change, which is as natural in life as is breathing. Change, which one comes across at just about every turn in life. Change, which one needs to accept as a part of life. Change, which one does not have to battle with as though it is not meant to be. Simply because it is. Change is meant to be.

Lots of subjects await you, lots of books wait patiently on the shelves at school for eager fingers to start poring through them to absorb and revel in the secrets and the knowledge that they hold. Chemicals await patiently within their bottles and their jars in the Chemistry lab for curious minds to start experimenting with. The English language awaits for fresh, eager minds to start exploring its beauty. Maths awaits the dawn of a new school year to test and sharpen your mind and brain with its algebraic equations and the Geometric angles and the twists and turns of Calculus and Trigonometry. Psychology awaits patiently, for it is keen to take you on a journey through the recesses of the human mind. Economics awaits tolerantly for its turn to take you on a journey through the markets and financial systems of the world. The list is endless, is it not ?

A whole new world awaits, beckons you with open arms and an armload of homework and projects ;-).

You know, as you walked over to the school bus today, looking all grown up in your new uniform, the image that was still stuck in my mind was the one of the day you started Primary One. Was it really that long back, has it really been 6 years, I wondered, amazed. The image that floated across my mind was that of a wee little girl with her pink Barbie backpack and her blue Thomas the train water bottle, with a shy yet confident, albeit a bit unsure smile on her face waving goodbye with those little hands just before she walked off into her Primary One classroom.

I remember you as that little child whom we have guided and protected so far. I remember you as the baby whose hands we held as you learnt to walk. And I remember the times we walked beside you as you learnt to balance and ride a bike. I remember you as a little child who cried profusely when you grazed your knee. I remember you as a baby who loved to chew on shoes. I remember you as the child who made me cry in the School Assembly hall, I remember you as the baby with a butterfly clip in your hair during your kindergarten years. Yet, you stood before us today, our baby in her new uniform, all set to step into Middle School.

Life, as you’ve known it so far sweetheart, is going to change. Accept that change with grace and humility. Challenges will be aplenty. Meet them with confidence and aplomb. There will be a lot of unnerving moments. Keep your cool and your composure. There will be people who try to goad you, irritate you. Deal with them with your head held high. Life is not going to be a bed of roses. But be thankful for the thorns along the way, for they are a reminder that life is like that. It is not all easy. There will be stumbling blocks along the way, there will be those hidden thorns. But it is indeed those very hidden thorns that teach us to appreciate the roses along the way.

Life does not always play fair. Remember that, for it is a very important lesson in life. There are times when things may not seem fair at all. Those are the times when one has to hold on to one’s grace and strength to not give in to those undercurrents that threaten to pull you down to their levels. Most importantly, have faith in yourself and the ideals that you stand for.

People may talk – around you, even about you. Like I said, life is not always fair. But the important thing is to remember that each person is different. No two people are alike. Even more importantly, each and every person is entitled to their own opinion. You may or may not agree with their opinions, but fact remains that they are entitled to their own. Just as you are entitled to your own. Respect others’ opinions just as you expect them to respect yours. It is indeed a two way street.

Remember your strengths and keep them close to your heart – for they are yours and only yours to hold and treasure. All the same, do bear in mind that each and every person does have weaknesses too. . Accept that truth with grace. Don’t fight it. Strive to improve upon your weaknesses by all means. But don’t deny the fact that you do have your own weaknesses. We are all fallible in some way or the other. That is precisely what makes us humans.

Friends will soon be aplenty. Embrace them with open arms and with all the warmth that I know you are capable of showering on your loved ones. All the same, also learn to distinguish between the real friends and the acquaintences. For, real friends are priceless.

As you reach out towards your pre-teen and teen years, I know for a fact that you will get more and more independent. As you learn how to deal with life and overcome your fears, it is going to be a learning process for us too, as your parents. Hard as it may be, we will have to learn that it will not always be possible for us to keep you under our wings. It may probably be the hardest thing for us to learn – the fact that we have to let you venture out by yourself and learn new things.

As parents, we will have to learn that though we have taught you what’s right and wrong, we have to set our children free at some point in life and let them follow their hearts. We will have to learn too, that at that point of time, we will still definitely be around, but on the sidelines. We will be cheering you on, rooting for you but not holding your hands. You will always find our hands on your head in blessing but not shackling you down. As parents, we will guide you and we will hope and pray that the choices you make will bring you happiness and satisfaction every step of the way.

As you step into Middle School today, I would like to quote you this poem by Amanda Bradley titled “Don’t forget”

Forget about the days when it’s been cloudy,
but don’t forget your hours in the sun.

Forget about the times you’ve been defeated,
but don’t forget the victories you’ve won.

Forget about mistakes that you can’t change now,
but don’t forget the lessons that you’ve learned.

Forget about misfortunes you’ve encountered,
but don’t forget the times your luck has turned.

Forget about the days when you’ve been lonely,
but don’t forget the friendly smiles you’ve seen.

Forget about plans that didn’t seem to work out right,
but don’t forget to always have a dream.

Last but not the least, do remember sweetheart, that we have always been, we still are and that we always will be very very proud of you. Also always bear in mind the fact that you are one of God’s own nestlings and that He will always be the wind beneath your wings, your ultimate guiding light, your benefactor.

Here’s wishing you all the very best, my precious.

With armloads of love and then some,


4 voice(s) said so:

Tharini said...

What a note of inspiration to send her on her way G! Appu in Middle School. There is so much I have missed out on.

Dearest Appu : Have fun!!! Have lots and lots of fun, because we already know that you will do fantastically well with your books and classes. A special prayer that you will meet some amazing people who will be some of your best friends for life! To me, school will always be about that. :) God Bless You, love.

Doli said...

Awww I felt so good after reading this letter to Macademia :) She is blessed to have you as a mother.. :)

radha said...

Very well written, thoughtful, inspiring. Exactly what any parent would be thinking and going through seeing their child grow up and take those first hesitant steps. Wishing you all my best wishes. lakshmi

Anonymous said...

Aww... All the best to Mac' and the other nuts in the family.
May you shine and at times outshine.... God bless