When Yog was small and didn’t know any of his sign language, it was often a challenge to make out what he was trying to communicate. Over time, experience taught me that there were only a limited number of things that could make an infant cry. These include – milk, when they are hungry; sleep, when they are tired; hug, when they need to feel loved; blanket, when they are cold; fan, when they are hot and lastly a change of diaper when the diaper is wet. So when an infant is crying, you normally check on all these things and address the one that needs attention.
Surprisingly, few days back, I realized these are the same few things that make nine year old, Toyna, also cry. Whenever she is upset and beyond words, I start with a hug and a cuddle, followed by talking to her and eventually leading her to food. If none of the other work out, I put her to bed. By the time she wakes up, she is fine. All the above work out as the right remedy in 90% of the cases. The remaining 10% are cases in which she is actually physically sick and needs medical intervention.
When I figured the correlation between Yog and Toyna, I started to wonder if the same correlation could apply to adults as well. After all, no matter the age, the basic human needs remain the same. At the end of the day, all we need is food, rest, love and some physical comfort. Given this basic premise, isn’t it a wonder, how differently adults react to stress than children? When children are tired, their body automatically turns them to sleep, so that it gets the chance to rest and rejuvenate. If you observe carefully, we adults do the exact opposite. When our body and mind is tired, we very well know that we need a break. However, our definition of break includes things like slouching in front of the television for hours, junking our mind with even more trash to process. Or, worse still, going to a bar and dumping our body with gallons of beer. Or, ordering junk food and watching a junk movie with our best friends. Imagine the strain, the body has to undergo to process the additional overload of junk, that too at a time, when it was already in a state of break down. This, to me, is beyond logical explanation.
When we are born, our mind is like this brand new super computer just waiting to load some operating system and programming languages to get started. However, over the years, we not only load these basic essentials in our mind, but also load large number of junk programs which eat up all the memory and CPU capacity of our mind. When our mind reaches a break down level, it starts sending us some form of alerts. These could be in the form of physical or mental breakdown symptoms. Geniuses, that we are, we not only choose to ignore these alerts, but we write a program that will overwrite the default settings of our mind and force it to accept our new defined defaults.
I am thankful for my children, who helped me trace and reset, the original default settings of my mind and body. Whenever, I am tired mentally or physically, I now prefer to sleep. One evil that I am still trying to outgrow is “Blogging”. However, I justify that to myself by thinking that through my blog, I am helping some of you learn what I have learnt from my children. Given this justification, I pray that my mind will forgive me for this one evil.