Everyone who knows me well should have known that I’m a mad lover of kids. They are always lovely, innocent and beautiful until life begins to happen to them as they grow up. So I make every effort to savour their tenderness while it’s still there. I’ve got a bunch of them at home.
Few days ago, two of them rushed into my room to disorganize and demolish everything there as usual. It’s their way of showing love to “uncle”…lol. Spanking and shouting at them will only make things worse for me.
I crawled to one end of my bed with my laptop while I willed every other part of the room to them. As long as I guarded my laptop tenaciously, they won’t have to break the screen a second time.
After a couple of minutes, bickering started. The opening argument of that day’s episode was quite spectacular and it caught my attention.
“I won’t play with you again, Devil.” 4 year old Ella fired sharply at her 6 year old brother, Junior.
The #D word tingled my ears, but before I could say a thing, Junior uttered what he deemed fit to be his responsive address.
“Ah! You’re calling a Devil. You’re a bad girl.” Junior, though older, is the soft bunny of the family and can only cry or report when offended. “I will go and tell mummy for you.”
I wanted to intrude, but that would have ended the drama too soon.
Ella whom I’ve always known to also love tears more than candies was surprisingly calm and unperturbed. She poked her mouth into her brother’s face with so much guts and precision like a pouting slay queen; her head shaking in a nice rhythm as she spoke.
“Eh eh, go and tell na. Mummy won’t beat me.”
Junior still being certain that Ella was wrong to have used the “D” word on him or anyone else for that matter, gave his closing remarks as he headed for the door.
“Oya, I’ll go and tell her and you’ll see what she will do to you.”
The first scene of the drama had obviously come to an end. It was too soon. I had to come in immediately else, their mum would have begun the second scene abruptly.
I called both kids together just before Junior reached for the door handle. Holding Ella tenderly on her right arm just to ensure she maintained the calm she had exhibited earlier, I asked her the throbbing question I had locked up in my head.
“Ella dear, who taught you the word, Devil?”
I didn’t know if it was the manner with which I asked the question or the way I held her arm that caused the problem, but she immediately lost a few ounces of boldness. She lowered her head and hesitantly replied,
The response wasn’t complete yet. Her mum couldn’t have taught her “Devil” as a five-lettered word.
“How did she teach you?” I inquired.
“That’s what she calls Auntie Ada every time she [mummy]beats her [Auntie Ada].” She replied.
That was certainly an ice-breaker for me. I immediately remembered that I had heard her mum a million and one times calling Auntie Ada all sorts of derogatory names. As a matter of fact, Devil unceremoniously eventually became Auntie Ada’s middle name.
Actually, Auntie Ada is the 9-year old girl that stays with the family. She is always guilty of one crime or the other. The judge and prosecutor is obviously the kids’ mum.
But unknown to the mum, she was gradually sowing dangerous seeds of negativity and hatred in her 4 year old daughter.
Further quizzing revealed that the girl had already built a mini-library in her head with those words and she always dished them out to her classmates at school as her spirit led.
So much hate for a 4 year old princess.
#PARENTING is way beyond putting food on the table and provision of funds to sentence kids to a private dungeon called school. It is so way beyond that. It also entails furnishing the right morals in these young minds. Morals that don’t just stem from teaching, but also from the actions of the parents.
Studies have shown that practically all kids act at genius level on or before the age of 4. That means they learn voraciously, and whatever that’s planted in their heads at this stage of their lives is almost indelible.
They’ve got eagle eyes and magnetic minds.
Teach them how to respect others by respecting your spouse and those around you.
Teach them to greet their elders, by doing it first.
Teach them how to pray by praying.
Teach them how to say polite words by doing same.
If you’re in the habit of keeping malice, they’re going to do same.
Or you can as well train them into being criminals by being one.
It’s a DO AS I DO stuff, and not just DO AS I SAY.
Play your part by pointing them to the right path of life, and you’ll be rest assured that you won’t be guilty of wrong doing if they eventually choose to deviate from that path when they become adults.
In all you do, never forget that at least one eye is watching.