I miss you when we're not together
I'm growing up so fast
See how big I've gotten
Since you saw me last?
As I grow, I'll change a lot,
The years will fly right by,
You"ll wonder how I grew so quick
When and where and why?
So look upon this handprint
That's hanging on your wall.
And memories will come back of me,
When I was very small.
Happy Grandparents Day!
You have a day, for almost everything nowadays. Valentine's Day. Mother's day. Father's day. Women's day. Fools day. Kiss day. Hug day. Heritage day. Earth day, Yoga day, ........... and so on. It often becomes a routine marketing and selling tool. Some twenty years ago or earlier, one had to go to a Greeting Card shop, pay for a card and buy it, write or sign on the card, stick stamps on the envelope and post it. There was a thrill when the card arrived by post with someone's handwriting on it. It did carry some sincere feeling behind it. It would be carefully kept and seen many times later as well. It was a person-to-person greeting.
Technology has rendered Greeting on a special day a very simple affair. Face Book has made it even simpler. There is no need to remember a special day. There is also no need to remember the special day to greet someone. One can write on the timeline after being reminded about it by the computer system. It can be pre-recorded and the system will release it automatically on the due date. You can sit for a few minutes and record all greetings for the next one year and be done with it. The sender does his duty and the receiver cannot differentiate between a genuine greeting and a routine greeting. Not just the person greeted, the whole world knows who greeted whom. And who liked who greeting whom.
Watching the various stages of development of a child is a very interesting aspect of life. Nature has made development of a human child into adult as a long drawn process, among all animals. An elephant calf struggles and stands on its feet within a few minutes after its birth. Thereafter, it runs behind the mother and gets very little assistance and grows into an adult elephant. It is the same with other smaller animals as well. The growth stages are covered in a few days and then the new born is on its own. There is no concept of "Maternity Leave" or "Paternity Leave" for them. A human child takes several years to reach a similar stage. Watching a child grow is as interesting a process as the difficulty of nurturing it during those long years. The process needs the efforts and support of many others in the society and not just the mother as happens in the case of other animals. The capacity to understand and enjoy the many stages of development of the child by the parents and adults around the child, makes it even more interesting and enjoyable.
Missing the thrill of observing a child grow is a big loss in one's life. Requirements of modren life and the demands of employment and livelihood rob many parents of the opportunity of watching their children grow. There is an even bigger pleasure in watching the grandchild grow up. As a friend so humorously remarked, man has more interest in the interest (grandchild) than the principal (child). Fortunately, technology is today coming to aid bridging this gap to some extent. Skype or Facetime allows live viewing of the growth stages from a distance. Photographs and video recording can also be used to remedy the situation to some extent. But the pleasure of watching the growth process in person and directly is something else.
Devaki and Yashoda are the two outstanding examples of persons missing the pleasure of watching the important stages of the life of a child. Krishna was taken away from Devaki even before she had seen the new born child properly. The next she saw him was when he had grown up as a big boy, capable of killing Kamsa and releasing her and his father Vasudeva from the prison. Yashoda was lucky enough to see all the developmental stages of little Krishna. What was Devaki's loss was Yashoda's gain. It is said that Krishna arranged a meeting of Devaki and Yashoda later on, to enable Devaki to hear about Krishna's growth years from her.
Yashoda too had her share of complaints. She complained to Krishna that she was deprived of watching Krishna's marriage ceremonies! In order to compensate for this loss, it is said that Krishna arranged for her being born as Bakulavati, and as a foster mother she was given the opportunity of leading and watching the marriage process of Srinivasa or Lord Balaji with princess Padmavathi.
We arrived just in time to participate in the "Grandparent's Day" arranged by the "Children's Academy", celeberated last wednesday. It was a touching function with grandparents of nearly 50 children in attendance. A lot of activities were planned by the academy and the outdoor session in bright sunshine was the highlight of the day. There was excellent music and merriment all around. Each grandparent got a special gift, a greeting card from the grandchild, like the one given in the photograph above. It was a day to cherish and remember.
"Certain things in life are priceless", the advertisement from MasterCard says. "There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there is MasterCard", it adds.
The child that gave the greeting card did not know what was written there and what it meant. But the print of the little hand on the card did the job. Grandparents who received them understood what they said. The card hanging on the wall will remind this for a long time to come. It indeed is priceless!