As a little girl, my mom used to tell me not to do this or that, but she most times never would tell me why she wanted me to or not to do some things. I can only describe my state in one word- baffled. Later on, after me pestering her a lot, she began telling me- "What will THEY think?" and I go- "WHAT will WHO think?" and then she goes- PEOPLE! My mother wanted to bring me up the way everyone would like me to be and it was my Dad who was a bit supportive.
"Don't talk that way, talk softly, don't cross your legs, Don't go on the bike with any guy, Don't talk for long on the phone, Don't leave your hair lose, plait your hair, No cycles, Don't get too close to that girl/boy,Don't wear Jeans! and what not?!!!" Though that phase is long gone, memories still remain. My Dad, the never orthodox and an atheist, always tried to reason with mom to let me do what I want.
I never understood why my mom was so bothered as to what the society, her family, her friends or for that matter, what our very neighbour thought of me or what I did. She did not want anyone to think bad of her daughter in any way. While everyone's daughters went for movies with friends even at school, I was barred from it. What did that lead to? - Me bunking college and going for movie. She used to decide what kind of clothes I get to wear too. Nevertheless, I loved them, because she somehow had good taste. Initially, mom and I used to fight about it, but then I got used to it just because she chose well. Today, I get to wear anything and whatever I want, no one to judge me by the clothes I wear, yet I somehow miss her selecting my clothes.
What will people think if I went on the bike with a friend? Do they really have the time to worry about what I'm doing, going on the bike? Really? I don't think so. Well, people will talk. So do we. Because unfortunately or fortunately we are people too. If they talk, we talk back. Its as simple as that.
I have tried to please everyone as far as I can remember. I have been good to everyone the way my mom always wanted me to and I ended up becoming a good person. But at the cost of what? Well, to tell the truth, I think it wasn't much of a price I paid. I learnt from experience. There have been people who have picked on me time and again, and I let them do it. I never spoke back to them, only because I did not want to disappoint my mother.
My mom eventually understood me, she was more supportive than anyone else. She was proud of me in everyway. She finally let me do things whatever I wanted but slowly and eventually. She just didn't want me to have all the freedom right from the start. She wanted me to earn her trust and I did. Few of them who were close to me in the family were quite judgemental of me and my acquired freedom. Well, they should know better now. And thats how I tell -People always talk.....but when it comes to things happening in their own lives, they simply don't want anyone to know, they try to keep things as quiet as possible and suddenly they stop talking about others.
There were and still are few people who think that my Dad has always let me have whatever I wanted, given me too much of freedom or that he just trusts me blindly. Well, they should take a hike or just take a look at their own sons and daughters or rather their own lives. My parents have given me the right amount of independence which permitted me to make the most of my life, have all the fun I have had, make good life long friends, learnt the lessons of life and most of all, grow up with no regrets. I could have misused the independence but I did not and yet people gossiped, and God only knows what would have happened if I did.
P.S. I don't know why I wrote this post. It was a sudden memory rush. I have not mentioned any names in this post and I just did not want to hurt anyone's feelings. Shall edit it and post the full story soon.