A couple of weeks ago, my EO came to me while I was on the comp (as usual...sigh!) and said to me, "Mamma, you and I are just the same. We both love to read, we both love salads, we both love acting, we both love music and singing... We are so same, naa?"
And like so many countless times before, he made me feel this extra-special kind of rush of love that only he is capable of making me feel. It makes me melt into the same pool of mommy-love that I had dissolved into the day he came into my world and changed it forever.
We had another incident soon after that, that brought out beautifully just how same-same we are and this happened right after his school closed post the unit tests. A friend had come over and all the boys in the house were playing, running amok, making noise and generally doing things that little boys do. Suddenly, the EO comes up to my room, all upset and ready to burst into tears. When I asked him what was wrong he said that the friend was fighting with him and etc. etc... I don't know why, but I didn't buy it...probably because of something he had shared with my mother and which she, in turn, had told me. He mentioned that he was feeling bad that Class 3 was over because they had had a lot of fun in class that year and he had enjoyed being in that class.
I asked the EO to lie down on my bed and he grabbed a pillow and started crying. I hugged him close, let him have his sob and asked him if he was feeling sad about not being in Class 3 anymore. He nodded. We talked about his class teacher who adored him, but thankfully didn't spoil him silly, giving him a dose whenever he needed it. We talked about his best friend in class who he'd grown really close to. We talked about all the fun things he had done. From his sobs and garbled words, I could make out that it was not being in this teacher's class anymore that was breaking him. I also told him that he could still see his teacher whenever he'd like, because he'd still be in the same school after all. I told him that his best friend would also still be there. I also reminded him that next year would have new surprises and fun moments in store, what with his brother joining the school :-)
My little boy's reaction brought back a long ago memory...
This happened when we were still living in New York. It was the last day of 3rd Grade. I remember sitting in the single seater at home, watching TV while DaddyDearest read the paper and MaaJanoni got dinner together. I suddenly started crying...I mean really, really crying my little heart out. I couldn't figure out why. Maa came running from the kitchen and the two of them tried to find out what was wrong when finally Maa hit the nail on the head -- I was crying for the teacher I was not going to see again.
Let me explain why she was so special...
That year, we came to India for a long holiday, while school in America was still on. Of course my parents took permission, but still, it was a really LONG time. By the time we got back, I remember hanging around in the school office for a while as they figured out what to do with me. The principal's secretary (I think) finally took me to another classroom (section), not my original one. I remember my teacher, Ms. Gordon, storming into that class, pulling me out and taking me to the principal's office where she fought to have me back in her class. From the little I over-heard as they debated and argued where to put me, I figured out that the school admin. had decided to shift me to a class full of 'weaker' students so that I could cope with everything that I'd missed and hopefully catch up by the end of the year. My teacher said that she was taking full responsibility for me and that she would make sure that I was on par with the rest of the class. Needless to say, she proved them right.
It's close to three decades since that incident and I still remember Ms. Gordon. I remember how she placed her faith in me and how she fought for me. She made me feel worthy and special and that why I will never forget Ms. Gordon of PS 33 Q, NY. Never.
And I hope my little boy never forgets a certain Ms. V.H. of SXCHS, his Class 3 teacher who made him feel so loved and special.
My EO and I really are very similar and I revel in shouting that from the roof-tops. We do have common interests and passions. We both love good food, and I mean the entire experience of it from the cooking to the smelling to the savouring of it. We both share an eclectic taste in music, running the entire gamut from ABBA to Rabindrasangeet to Rodrigo y Gabriele to Michael Jackson to Jashn-e-Bahara. Of course he likes him some Kolaveri and Chhamak Chhallo too...but then he shrugs his shoulders at my love for Genda Phool and Alanis Morissette. We love the stage and the mere thought of theatre has us salivating. We love reading and even have a common love there -- the Mahabharatha; I've read at least ten versions of it while the EO is already three down. He attacks my precious collection of Amar Chitra Katha with much gusto and I am always adding to the collection. He wants me to look up extra info on all his favourite entertainers (from writers to actors to WWE wrestlers to musicians) on Wikipedia -- this also happens to be a favourite past-time of mine! We can sit down with a book anytime and any where and we often do. We're both also very last-minute people and quite scatter-brained as well.
Then of course there's the sensitivity issue. We are both overly-sensitive and I hope in the long run this is something that he can work on. It killed me through my school and college years and it still does me in every now and again. I would be devastated to see him get taken advantage of.
And we both cried for our third grade teachers at the end of the year.
That's just one more thing that makes us same-same.