I Am Flawed

Sitting on bed with hair down and back resting on a big cushion calling it a day and watching my favorite drama on Netflix – Never I Have Ever, story of an Indian teen growing up in America. Yes I am a teen drama person, really want to keep it light for there’s always much drama unfolding in reality. Towards the end of the series which is one hell of an emotional roller coaster Devi, the lead protagonist of the series bursts out at her overtly strict mother and says “I wish you were the one who died that day” and shuts on her. But soon there was a reconciliation as those words were an emotional, frustrated break out and were not laced with the intention.

Well, whatever we see onscreen for our entertainment are not completely alien situations. The very much inspiration of such sequences is from us and our lives. I can instantly relate to particular scene and I have been in both the shoes – a kid and a parent.

I have been mad at my father once for trusting someone blindly and offering his signature as a guarantor putting our future in dock. It was not the crises that hit us enraged me but the thoughtlessness. Though the anger was momentary but the regret and guilt of hurting him emotionally when all he needed was a bit of solace will haunt me forever. We shared a beautiful relationship, he never held any grudges against me (a beautiful soul + in the shoes of a father) but blemishes are highlighted on a clean surface, isn’t it? My moment of agony made me blurt out words that were unintentional and living this life to regret it forever.

As a parent, for that matter in any position of responsibility be it in relationships or organizations our frustrations, vulnerabilities, agonies, helplessness, emotional pent up inside make us mouth words that serves the only purpose of emptying our negative emotions corroding us from inside as acid. As parents having an agenda of setting a decorum and system we often say words like “you are finished if this work is not done on time”, “if you are not ready to mend your ways get ready to leave the house”, “I will break your bones if I see you again misbehave” and likewise. Do we really mean them? Can we really be so violent and indifferent? No as the intention is to give a direction to the proceedings and not to convert our words into actions. And I have been a very much participant in this parenting style (sometimes a little coercion is necessary with kids till they reach a certain age). As a mother such words never made me introspect myself but what I say or said to my 9 years old son many a times disturb me to no end. He is a non verbal autistic. Everyday I see him explode – cry, shout, aggressive with himself and if I try to control/pacify him he gets aggressive with me as well. I am used to this routine as such spells of nervousness and pure agony of being unable to explain what he is going through lasts for 15-30 minutes everyday. Though I try to keep my cool because whatever he is doing isn’t intentional there are moments of my own meltdown where I literally said “I wish you were not in our lives, we would have been so much better off”. When there is silence all around during the night few thoughts pinch me real hard – what if he understood whatever I said? What if these in reality unintentional words are getting sedimentated in his heart? What if he starts distancing himself from me as well? I don’t have a great social life (not complaining either) except for that of on social media which is also now quite a curbed one (for own mental peace). When such circumstances are coupled with other pressures can make one succumb especially when your child keeps wailing for no apparent (for us) reason. I can be really nasty sometimes in those brief moments and I go to bed with a regret. The regrets are heightened when your child wiping his/her tears wants to see you and engulf you in the warmest embrace and the fact that they didn’t understand a single word (venmous arrows) you shot at them. My son is exactly in the space. He doesn’t understand the reason for my agitation directed towards him as I don’t understand his. Despite of my love and worry for him – about how he will adjust in this ruthless world, how people will treat and accept him my own unintentional burns hurled at him are enough to Show mirror to me – I am a flawed character!!

I am trying to fight my own demon: Being emotionally overwhelmed can never be an excuse to the misdeed I have committed. Misdeed when intentional is a sin and when unintentional is a folly and a reason for misunderstandings, regrets and often irreconcilable distances. No matter how much I try to explain myself to others, at the end of the day I have to sleep with my conscience,

  • When you are explaining to strangers you are worried about your image more than anything else. I do have an image of being goody two shoes and I am not sure intentional or otherwise. As a person living in society, I admit I care for that.
  • When you are explaining yourself to your loved ones you want to retain them in your life, it’s as simple as that.

Everytime a thunderbolt bolt of anger hits me it awakens the snakes asleep on the bed of my tongue and I am on a biting spree. Little did that snake know there isn’t any antidote to the venom it spews. My only deliverance is a deep breathe and chanting. If nothing seems to help I try to move out of the entire scenario. I am not preaching any Gyan here of how to deal with your intentional and unintentional follies, the reason why I chose to write is to admit that I am Flawed and if that’s courageous, I might muster even more courage to set it right some day.

I SURELY DIDN’T INTEND TO…

There are many times in life when we do something that we don’t intend to. Why do we do something without an intention? Because all the negative feelings like hatred, anger, frustration, guilt etc. do not work with Intention. These feelings only know destruction and even though these can motivate you for a short while, eventually they will make you do things that you do not intend to do. 

Like for my 6-year-old son, there is a “Bad Devil” and “Good Angel” inside him. The bad devil often gets very powerful and makes him a bad boy. Good Angel on the other hand does the exact opposite. When he throws tantrums and misbehaves, it is his bad devil that makes him to do so. 

Isn’t it true for all of us? Bad Devil making us do things that we definitely never wanted to do. 

The way I hit my pup

When my dog was a little puppy only a month old, she was teething and obviously would chew on every item in the household that she could reach. It was newspapers, footwears, furniture, wires etc. One day when I came back from the office, as usual, she started climbing over me licking me all over. I have always loved being welcomed back home this way. But as I enter the house playing with her, I notice in the corner of the hall – my brand new (really expensive) footwears in tatters. My anger grows so badly within seconds, that I hit her with all my might. Poor thing, she fell down and had no clue why this unannounced attack came on her. 

Pups are much like human babies. They cannot connect why grownups are feeling in a certain way if we don’t make it obvious for them. I didn’t do that. I scared the hell out of her, she hid beneath the bed and stayed there for a while. I looked at my broken footwear which was now beyond repair. After about 5 mins, I felt terribly guilty. I called her out, but she took her time to trust me again. And I am pretty sure that I saw tears in her eyes and she was even trembling. That day I swore to myself, that I will never ever hit her this way. She is such a precious little being for me and she doesn’t deserve to be treated this way. 

How many of us intend to be the best parents in the world but end up abusing our kids or pets because of the frustrations of our lives? 

The way I said mean things to my husband

Soon after marriage, I realized that handling a married relationship is in no way easy. It was great to be my husband’s girlfriend, but being his wife was a totally different ball game. Till this realization came, our worlds kept clashing and the difference in expectations made me do and say a lot of mean things to my husband. It didn’t mean that I didn’t love him, it just meant that my “Bad Devil” came in more than desired and made life very difficult for me. It made me do and say things that I never intended to. 

And after every argument, I would text him – “I am really sorry. I didn’t mean to say that…” 

One day he asked me, why you say things that you don’t mean. How do I know that you really don’t mean them? I didn’t have an answer but I apologized. But his asking me a question so direct, made me realize what I was doing. 

Always to remember – “The spoken words can never be taken back” 

I just gave two examples here. But there are innumerable incidents in different relationships where I have done things that are against my actual intention and regretted them. 

How do I control my “Bad Devil” so that I don’t do things that I don’t intend?

A lot of things. Some common examples are –

  1. I try to keep an attitude of gratitude. 
  2. I meditate.
  3. I say prayers either as affirmations, mantras or other things
  4. I ensure that I don’t take any action when I am in a negative state of mind.
  5. I ensure that I keep my mouth shut when I am angry.
  6. I take time-outs when I see my “Bad Devil” rising.
  7. I try to keep my intentions for each day very clear.

We human beings are blessed because we can use our intentions to move in the direction that we want to. Sometimes our negative emotions serve as a deterrent to our intentions, we need to keep them at bay if we intend to grow and evolve to better versions of ourselves.