It is eight months since I got married and friends and relatives have started keeping their eyes and ears open for the 'good news'. Scrutinizing my still-so-flat-belly, they fire the all important question 'Any good news?'
Jesting away their innocuous queries, I reply that it has been only eight months or that I myself am still a kid. But the persistence of the question made me sit up and think seriously.
It was only a few months back when I was still Mama's li'l kid, free from the worries of running a household. Life consisted of small question marks like what to wear to college the next day; the only big ones being what subjects to specialize in and where to submit resume's. The responsibilities ended at oneself.
Now I have this stupendous proposition of bringing forth another human being on this earth who would completely be my responsibility. Really intimidating! 'The mother is the child's first school', they say. The school is responsible for the education it imparts. Being a school in oneself will not be a small task. Children learn a lot by imitation. Will I have to be constantly on my guard? The way I behave, talk, eat etc., will be imbibed by it. My existence will always be under a watchful eye. What then about the not-so-bright spots of my demeanor? It is bad enough to have them but to know that somebody may just be looking up at you as a role model, Lord help me!
How will I preach it to get up early when I myself find it a pleasure to lie snugly in bed till late? How will I teach him the importance of morning walks and exercises when I myself keep on dilly-dallying on such strenuous issues! How will I teach it the virtue of punctuality when I myself rush everywhere at the last minute?
The school, it seems, has to go for a major update.
Apart from the worldly issues, how will I quench his thirst on the other-worldly matters? Will I be able to teach it the art of living a perfect life when I myself do not know its secret? Still making theories and dispensing them. Still experimenting. Still a kid, spiritually speaking.
Doubts galore and I see no answers. Life has its own way of revealing them, I conclude. Who knows, the little one may well turn out to be my school than the other way round! It may reveal the hidden secrets of life and teach me the art of living.
I am calm after this deluge of thoughts. I will strive to be worthy of my kid and leave the rest on him to teach me, I decide. Dear School, I give another year to you for updating yourself.
Folks, friends and relatives! In due course of time I'll appear in the deluxe edition of my pretty self and deliver the 'Good News' soon!