You know when there are certain songs that remind you of your childhood? Imagine passing by a club and hearing Britney Spears tunes. Or dancing on ‘Hips don’t lie’ in house parties. This is what I am reminded of when I read these words – ‘I have a dream’. It is the titular song from a little-known Swedish band called ABBA. For those of you who don’t know ABBA, please live a little and watch Mamma Mia! Being the youngest sibling in a typical Indian middle-class household, I was subjected to much torture by my elder sister who forced her music taste on me as we had to share the same room. I’m not going to lie; the song did grow on me. In an overall sense, the song is about a dream of a beautiful world with positivity, and angels. As a kid I thought that it was a song about some girl having a dream and singing about it. Typical pop stuff. But you know that moment when you finally realised how Tom and Jerry cartoons were on darker themes and used slapstick violence inappropriate for little kids? That’s what I felt when I finally grew some brains and started to analyse more, when I realised how the song can have a deeper annotation to it. Words like ‘angels’ and ‘crossing the stream’ could mean the possibility of an afterlife or a utopian world where everything is a fantasy, and everyone is good to anyone. So maybe this song was composed by four people who were so desperate to get rid of the real world and their pain that they spoke about a fantasy in a ‘dream’ and sang about the final destination. Hence, it’s quite a possibility that my favourite childhood popstars were trying to cope with the real world whilst daydreaming of an afterlife! Talk about nostalgia! But come to think of it, isn’t that what hope truly is?
Parents – Imperfectly perfect
What comes to your mind when you see the above picture? Open books. Personally, that’s what comes to my mind when I see this picture. I construe open books as open people. Free from mystery and concealment. When people reveal their true selves. How many times have you felt lost or neglected because your parents fail to communicate openly with you? As a young girl, brought up by a single mother, I for one felt that a lot. Obviously apart from managing her two kids, my mother had to be the bread earner of the family as well, so she had a lot on her plate. I’m not complaining, however I do wish sometimes that she would have eased up little and shared about her thoughts, inner turmoil with someone. Sounds easy, right. Just speak up. But it’s quite the opposite. Our parent’s generation especially finds it hard to articulate their thoughts into words. I’m a 25-year-old woman, but my mother till today finds it hard to talk to me about sex. Sure, with time a person adapts and grows but there are certain behaviours that are so inbred to my Indian society that makes communication a challenge. Our society puts our parents in the same pedestal as God, and every so often our parents forget that they are humans too. They are so busy portraying themselves as the ideal parent, who can do no wrong, that they forget that they have shortcomings and flaws. This reflects in poor judgements and lack of communication with their offspring and toxic home environment. Today, thanks to social media, there is much talk about therapy and the need to share. Its high time that they realise that parenting is imperfect, you don’t have to be Godlike, and sharing, chatting with your child or a professional will enable your child to feel secure, loved and competent.