Every time we (Ammu, you and me) do something together and you lag a little behind, you scream ‘don’t forget me!’ in your beautiful singsong voice. And every time, I open this blog that’s the voice that I hear. ‘Don’t forget me’. No.. I haven’t forgotten you, Kanna. How can I forget you?
Sweet. Charming. Always smiling. Sensitive. Intelligent. You think we can forget you? Nah. Never, Kanna.
Yesterday one of your top front teeth fell off at school. You came home smiling with that big gap in between, so delirious with joy because you are now becoming big. Of course, in all your euphoria you wouldn’t have noticed your Amma going into the bathroom and shedding two drops of tears because her little child is slowly growing up. Anyway, when I came out and saw your face, it looked oh-so-funny and I laughed. A little. ‘Amma’, you said. ‘Imagine how you’ll feel when you grow old and lose all your teeth and I laugh at you because you look funny?’ It took a couple of seconds for me to recover from that ‘gyan’ to apologize for laughing at you. You, my adorable Kuttan, are really growing up and I must say I am not too thrilled about it.
Do you remember that day when your sister came home crying because of some bad thing her friend told her? I told Ammu what that friend did was really mean and she should stay away from such a friend. Little did I realize that my little Buddha was standing next to me. ‘Listen Amma!’, you said. And like any obedient Amma I did. ‘This happened today. Tomorrow that friend might not do the same thing. She might behave better. She might apologize to Ammu. In fact, she’ll even forget about everything that happened today. So why ask Ammu to stop talking to her?’ There.. Didn’t I tell you that you are one of my life-advisors?
Menu giver. Ingredient identifier. Food critic. All things food in this house is you. No.. Not a single soul in this world will believe that. You look like that little stick who might break if you run a little faster. But. Big but. Hmph. ‘Ma.. Vathal kuzhambu. Vendaikkai Kari. And rasam for lunch. What Ammu, does that suit you?’ But of course that smitten sister of yours always says a yes. ‘Next time can you bake carrot cake, Amma?’ I am at your service Maharajah! The other day our neighbour was here with a dabba of some curry. There were a few chunks of something that looked like tofu or paneer. I was confused even after tasting it. ‘Ma.. Can you give me a little to taste?’ Well.. who else but you. Just a teeny little bit of it you tasted. ‘Aiyo ma.. it is not paneer or tofu.. this looks like omlette bits. It is egg, ma!’ And, egg it was!
Kuttan.. I know I keep telling you (both) this but really there can’t be anyone who is more prouder than me for having been blessed with you as my son. You are intelligent. You read like a pro. It takes just once for you understand any concept. You ask the right questions always. You remember things that happened years ago with the minutest detail possible. And beyond all this, all through this year (with another twenty days left I hope I don’t jinx it!), you’ve never come home with a bad behaviour remark in your folder. I mean like NEVER. This, I can’t be more proud of!
Do you remember that write-up on ‘what you’d be doing when you are hundred years old?’ You had written a lot of things and finally you wrote, ‘I will miss my mom and dad!’ in the end. And you explained, ‘Ma.. When I am hundred, you both will be dead no Amma. That’s why I will miss you!’ Your love for your Amma and Appa is the best thing in the world.
You are the most sensitive person in the family, Kuttan. You cannot stand anyone being sick. You get worried so much and keep asking after them every two minutes. ‘Amma.. Are you okay now?’ ‘Ammu.. Is your stomachache gone?’ ‘Amma.. Is Appa going to vomit now?’
And, while on vomit, we have done a complete research on two things – 1. vomit (Why do our eyes tear up when we vomit? What are the various causes of vomit?) 2. death (Why do we die? How do we die? At what age do we die? Why is kollu paati still not dead?) Your in-depth understanding of such things amazes and amuses me at the same time.
While I’ve written about how Ammu handled your Star Student award, it only seems fair that I write about how you handled the entire thing. Yes.. You were very happy when you received the award but once you saw Ammu being upset, I saw your face crumble. At home, when we were trying to talk to Ammu, you became the big brother of sorts and complemented me in consoling her. ‘Ammu.. You can do cartwheels better than me, right? Just like how I can read better than you. That’s all, Ammu!’ Not once did I see you bragging about your award to her. Not once. To show such restraint at this age is such a lesson to me. You made my parenting job much much easier. Thank you for that Kanna!
And, when she received her Star Student award, you were so proud of her. You smiled that charming sweet smile of yours and came by asking ‘Are you really happy now, Amma?’ I remember hugging you. I remember not letting you go for a long time. And, I remember thinking.. I hope this hug compensates for all the guilt I felt when you got the award. Oh Kanna.. I really really wish I never have to go through that feeling again, although I know that is close to impossible. So all I ask you is to understand my guilt, if not forgive me for it. I know you would.
Kuttan.. You, my dear boy, are the sunshine of this family. Without you we’d all be, well the term is… incomplete. Your smile lights up our world like nothing ever does. Just keep that smile and don’t lose it for anything, Kanna. Anything.
Lots of love,