Me, a Father?

| Wednesday, September 8, 2010
As people interact with me, I do not intend to hide my flaws. However, I hope that they will get something good from knowing me. Life too short to make enemies. Smile :)

But, Alas! Does anyone even recognize or use this emotion anymore? All day long at work, I am faced with differing requests and complaints, not only from customers but also from my employees, that someone else is responsible for their "failures". When will they realize that we all have a part to play. Take responsibility I said!!

Among many other things, I am trying to read this engrossing book "We Need To Talk About Kelvin" by Lionel Shiver. The writing is beautiful, poetic at times, and it is a book of letters, from a woman to her husband, trying to rediscover what went wrong, after their son goes to high school and kills 9 people one day.

She traces all the way back from when they first entertained the idea of children, to the fateful day Kelvin commits the shooting. Where did they go wrong? The writing is raw and harrowing, and Lionel has a real gift. What happens when a mother does not feel the motherly love when she holds her baby for the first time, and what happens when your child is evil in nature. Why is it that the mother always cops the blame? I am only halfway through the book and I am already questioning the judgment that we are quick to pass about parents.

So far, I have to admit that I am loving and savouring this book.. It is not difficult to empathize with the mother in the book, but let me reassure you that she is flawed, and she is real. The book paints the father as a doting parent, the perfect child loving adult with a blind spot. It really makes me appreciate the responsibility that parents take on.

One good example is how quickly we condemn the mother who leaves her child in the bathtub for 5 seconds to pick up the phone and comes back to discover that her child has drowned in two inches of water. Two inches. She could have been a great mother all this time, but we discount that. We only remember and judge her for the 5 seconds that she was away. As if to say that the loss of her child and her guilt is not enough to tie her down already.

The book also makes me wonder; does this responsibility towards our children blind us to the point of protection that we will blame anyone or everyone than our own child for something that they had committed. Are we teaching them the right thing by shielding them and reaffirming their perfection? When and how do we teach responsibility. Will this world be a better place to live if we all took some responsibility instead of trying to find excuses and place the blame on others? The real question is will I be the father painted in this book or the father I preach to be in my blog.. hmmm


Post a Comment

Next Prev