Childhood is that Golden stage when our characters are formed. Like clay are delicate the minds of the little ones. How you shape them is what you get out of them. So a good deal of responsibility lies on parents to teach them how to do right.
Having born and brought up in a typical middle class family, I was blessed to have parents who introduced me to various hues of life, yet kept me grounded in an excellent manner. In the limited means they taught me to live unlimited moments of happiness.
Youngest of the herd, I was a typical pampered, naughty kid. If there was one thing that could scare me, it was my mother’s angry eyes, coz that meant a hamper full of troubles – she wouldn’t talk to me, make me confess my mistake and find my own way out. No matter how much I hated it back then, it has helped me in the long way. Today when mom is no more, I still know what she would have thought it right and what wrong…
Mom was a regular with morning walks, and I would often accompany her to the nearby park. Her passion for gardening was as strong as my passion now for blogging. She would tell me about the various plants and flowers that we saw and many others that she had seen over the years.
I still remember the festival of Diwali when I was eight. The preparations for the Puja were on, when mom asked me to get flowers from our garden for the Puja. Like mom, I was in love with my garden. It was my mom’s labour of love and my pride as I would often bring my friends and show them the beautiful flowers mom had grown. I used to strictly follow mom’s instructions of not plucking flowers. We had recently been blessed with roses with fragrance that was so divine. So that evening when mom asked me to pluck the roses for the Puja, I got kind of sentimental, since I didn’t want to let go of my garden’s beauty. So, I had a plan in my mind. Two houses away lived Sneha, gal who I was at loggerheads with, since she would always dominate the gang in all the games we played. She was a Bi..g child and had hit me too on few occasions. So the tiny but clever me decided to even it out with her.
Sneha’s family was busy inside with the Puja preparations. Their garden, a tad smaller than us, boasted of some amazing cactus plants. But there was just one rose which Sneha was very proud of. So instead of plucking the rose from my garden, I tiptoed into their garden and plucked the only rose - a revenge well taken.
Like a warrior back from a war won, I handed over the flower to mom. However, she was quick to realize it wasn’t from our garden since the characteristic dark maroon color and the strong fragrance of our flowers was missing. The more I tried to lie, the more I got caught in my own web. In tears, I finally confessed my crime.
“An eye for an eye, just makes the world blind beta”, was all she said. As I told her about my issues with Sneha, mom said “would you like it if someone stole flowers from our garden, especially when we have just one left? Love, my dear wins wars that best of weapons can’t”. So, mom asked me to quickly pluck some flowers, go to Sneha’s house & give it to her mom. My face was red with fear. Here was I dancing around with my revenge taken and here was mom ready to make me feel embarrassed in front of my enemy. But an order was an order. So, with a sheepish look, I went to Sneha’s house with the flowers and rang the bell in hesitation.
As Sneha’s mom opened the door, I offered the flowers “Here are some flowers aunty, u wil need them for the Puja”, I said. “Oh thanks Beta, by the way we too just had a rose in our….”, her eyes went to the rose plant in her garden & were left wide open at the sight of the missing flower.
Now here was my moment of truth. “I am sorry aunty, I plucked the only rose from your garden. Sneha had been troubling me for a while and I found this an easy way to get back at her. But my mom has made me realize my mistake Aunty. Compassion is the best key to win over your enemies, not revenge. Please don’t say it to Sneha. I will be embarrassed.”…I was running out of breath with nervousness and my face turned red when Sneha appeared from behind her mother.
But all mothers are made of 100% love and compassion, so Sneha’s mom, instead of scolding me, took me inside and listened to my issues. She then made her daughter apologize to me & told her “see how her mom has taught her the right message. Learn to own up your mistakes like her. ” Sneha too was feeling guilty by now. “Friends” she said and offered me her hand. I smiled and we became being the best of friends.
That day, by doing what is right I learnt one of the biggest lessons of my life…honesty pays in the long run and compassion is the best weapon to win over your enemies. Thanks mom, for teaching me to do what is right…