I wrote about child proofing.
Lumi mentioned in the comments section that she had taught her Mini Me not to touch stuff rather than total child proofing. Come to think of it, ditto with my baby brother. Except for items on the dressing table and a table placed in front of the TV to prevent him from hitting the screen with his hand in which he used to wear a silver bracelet, we did not do too much of child proofing. He was pretty low maintenance as a child. On the contrary, a few relatives (D& B) who were a good 3- 5 years older than him were terrors- we had to hide my brother’s tricycle, stroller, toys etc to prevent them from breaking stuff. For the record, neither we sisters nor my brother broke toys. Barring a few accidental breakages, whatever toys had been broken or even the favourite doll which has pen marks on her head- was done by others- read the terror relatives D&B. In fact her mother and she were ultra careful about her Barbie that was kept out of reach in her own home.
While Tejas & Ojas are natural destroyers. So were my close cousins A & S. While my cousins’ avenue were toys and may be an occasional electronic item but my kids arena is limitless. It can be doors, toys, phone, DVD to TV wires, knife, vessels, lemon strainer, clothes clip, puja cupboard, remote, A/C, keys, gas, lighter, the list is endless. My soft toys have been well played but look new like because they were played with care and washed and cleaned regularly by Mom. Whereas my kids’ soft toys have a worn out look due to the rough handling and lack of control and care by yours truly.
That sets me thinking. Probably there is a Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva in all kids.
Some like Brahma are naturally creative & inquisitive- those whiz kids who can crack puzzles, use Bob the Builder type of Make & know toys and learn the alphabets and colours and birds & animals fast.
Some like Vishnu are preservers- those dream kids who never break their toys or mess around with things that don’t concern them. Mind you, they are not dull or boring or lack in intelligence. They are just careful.
Some like Shiva are destructors. They will not sit still and do their lessons. You will never find them attempting to solve the puzzle rather they will play with the pieces. You build the model aeroplane with the building blocks, they will pull it apart. They will open the parts of the torch, mobile, remote and curiously explore what’s in. They will bang & hurl objects for no rhyme or reason. Even the bed spread, folded clothes & stuff inside cupboard will not be spared. But take heart. It is often said that those who destroy more get to learn the insides of how things work naturally provided they channel it right.
So there are kids and then there are kids. To each his own. One must try to identify the type of kid one has been blessed with and decide the level of child proofing.
For a very long time I did not do the child proofing. All this was done at a much later stage when the MIL & the maids began to have a tough time handling the challenge. The number of times they approached the gas stove was growing in numbers. The vessel drawers were getting emptied on many occasions and the re-washing was harrowing the maids. I feared I would lose all my CD collection & important papers and I was ending up with having no storage space as all the lower levels were getting emptied one by one. My entire living room had barricades against the drawers and show case- barricades like heavy sofa, their stroller stuffed with pillows and toys to prevent access, upturned chairs tied over side tables to prevent them from climbing over and reaching the plug points. And now I do not have any place to charge my mobile except the office or the kitchen plug point. My bangles and clothes were repeatedly being pulled out of the cupboards. In total, life was getting tiring for the care givers.
For my part, I honestly tried exercising discipline, saying this belongs to Mummy or Daddy or making the sound of a strict “ay ee” or giving a smack on the butt or the hands. None worked. In fact they challenge us by doing exactly what we asked them not to do.
Hence the childproofing of the home. To prevent things from getting destroyed. To prevent them from getting hurt. And so that we can relax a little bit.