“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players”; so wrote Shakespeare. And he further added about the school boy thus: “And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school.” Let me start right with school boys and girls; that stage where the drama of life enacts itself through the humourous fun, fight, and flight that happens when getting children ready for school.
Even when there is great fun at school and life is cool with friends, children don’t like to get up in the morning. They love to tuck themselves in the bed and say, “2 minutes,” “1 more minute,” “Please Mummy,” and so on. If that doesn’t work then there are fireworks. The only exception is when there is a picnic and they are ready even before parents are up!
As you look at what happens every morning, you simply say life is beautiful. Why? I don’t know. But memories of this fun and fight every morning are precious. No doubt the fights look terrible at times and can turn into screaming and physical fighting; there is a great relief when you catch the bus after a last minute olympic sprint defying and records-breaking run to the bus stop.
Children grow up in the twinkle of an eye and the opportunity you get to teach them vital lessons in life is but a brief window in time. While every parent has tons of complaints about children’s reluctance in getting ready for school, at the end of the day it is love that prevails. I think both parents and kids make a lot of mistakes in these battles that happen every morning.
Children don’t understand why they are being pushed to go to school. And parents are mostly criticizing their kids for their lack of discipline, punctuality, and lack of understanding of the importance of education.
I wonder if there is any home that is free of this fun, fight, and flight I was talking about. It is only when parents talk freely with other parents that they discover this struggle is a common experience and it happens in every home in some way or the other.
Maybe that is when they realise something about the opening lines of Leo Tolstoy’s 1877 novel Anna Karenina, which begins: “All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way,” whatever that means!
It is also said that a family that prays together stays together. But I would also like to add that families that experience the fun, fight, and flight of sending children to school also bond in ways that defy logic. It is the heart that wins at the end. And sometimes chocolates too which are offered or demanded as means of compromise. Life is beautiful in the fun, fight, and fight mode; without doubt.