What comes to your mind when you think of the word “bloom”? Maybe you visualize a plant along with the words “air, water, soil, and sunlight”. When think about nurturing a plant, we think of the gardener having to ensure that the plant gets all of these, according to its needs.
Each plant grows at its own pace. A chickpea and a green pea will not sprout at the same time. A seasoned gardener knows the need of his plants and caters to each individually. He pays extra attention to the plants, which grow slowly and are fragile.
Likewise, each child is different from another, and it is in maintaining this difference that he stands out as unique. As parents, we must become like competent gardeners. And it is our responsibility to provide extra care and support to the ones whom we call the late bloomers.
Parents, just like gardeners, have no control over the growth of their children. They can only take care of the surroundings – provide an appropriate environment for them, so that children grow into independent individuals. We will be able to do this only if we understand their needs, have a close bond with them, and observe them carefully, rather than critically.
We wish to cater to each child’s needs and wish we could “water” them all the same and give the same “amount of light”. However, as a parent, our role is exactly that of a gardener – not in giving all “the same” but for each child “the right” environment to grow. We trim the plant and reign in it, when needed – but if this is all we do, then what growth can we expect? If as parents we focus excessively only on instruction, supervision and corrections, little time is left to give them the nurturing environment they need. Why are we then surprised that our beautiful little plants seem to be withering away?
This is an excerpt from the print issue.
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