Talk to your parents more
One of the biggest things I learnt in 2017 was that I shouldn’t be scared to bring up things with my parents. As a child, while my parents were (and still are) extremely open-minded, it took me some time to explain to them all the thoughts that were going on in my head. I remember understanding the value of opening up to them during the time my Board Examinations were ongoing, and when college application decisions were pending, but that was mostly me ranting, and not really explaining things out – because I was a frustrated soul.
There were numerous points this year where I fought with my parents. In fact, I don’t think I’ve fought with them as much as I have over the course of this year. Fighting is a strong word, and I’m sure as they read this (hello!), they’d prefer me to use “disagree”, or “not concur”, rather than the word fight, but there were several times we were on completely opposite ends of the spectrum on a particular topic. That was because neither of us was communicating what we were thinking.
I guess this goes for all relationships but it’s just a lot easier explaining things to my parents than doing things and trying to predict what their outcome is, because yes, I’ve grown up a lot since I’ve come to college, but I still do look to their advice for a lot of things.
Granted, I don’t think they’re always right. And yes, I do think they’re blatantly wrong with some of their accusations. The biggest thing I learnt over the course of explaining my emotions to them is that I shouldn’t be apologizing for things I feel. I used to use “Sorry” as a great cop-out strategy. Just to avoid getting irritated with them, or them getting irritated with me, I’d just apologize for whatever blunder they accused me of. But I can’t do that anymore, and I think they’ve come to realize & accept that there are some things they may feel that I’m unwilling to budge on. It just makes for a lot more respect in the conversations we have.
Plus, I legitimately only speak to them for maybe 5 minutes a day, and I really don’t want to use that time yelling at them, or listening to them yelling at me. I’d rather save all the yelling for when we meet in person: I think confrontation is a lot more fun that way.
Sometimes they react in ways I wouldn’t expect. I honestly didn’t expect them to sanction a 3rd debating trip I wanted to take this year. Nor did I expect them to be okay with me dropping an internship. Or coming back to Ahmedabad really early, and missing NYE with them. But they compromised on a lot of things this year, for me. I know I haven’t spent time with my parents, especially my dad, as much as we usually would have liked to.
The great thing is that we’re committed to working on a couple of things as a family. And Project Law School was something we collectively signed up to back in 2015. Now it’s just a matter of taking things as they come along.
Hopefully in 2018 we’ll be in the same city more often, parents. But I’m glad we talk as openly as we do. This past year especially, has been a joy. Will never forget my internship in Whitefield (where I loafed around at home before/after work/on weekends like I was a schoolkid.) Makes me wonder what working in Bengaluru would be like.
That was my year in review, I guess.
What will tomorrow bring, I wonder?
Curd rice out.