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Where is this nice guy

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Viswamitra, Dec 21, 2014.

  1. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    “Are you ready to go to the vegetable market? We can either walk or go in your bike, if you can give me a ride”. “I am ready mom and let us go”.

    “Today, I am planning to make deepavali sweets”. “Mom, please let me know what can I do to help?”

    “I am thinking of making idli batter for making idlis tomorrow”. “Mom, let me help you grind the batter”.

    “We are moving to a new house and the milk booth is far away. Can you come home sharp at 6 p.m. every day after your play so that you can run up to this booth and get milk?” “Mom, Yes I will”.

    “Today, guests are coming and I am planning to clean the house”. “Wait mom, let me help you”.

    These were conversations between my mother and myself until I was 15 and after that I went to stay in a hostel to start my Pre-University course.

    What happened to this nice guy who was always willing to help his mother at home? Did I develop these qualities because I didn’t have any sisters to help my mother? No, not really. I truly enjoyed helping my mother in every domestic work. Now the rewind is over to the bachelorhood period, let us rewind further to the post marriage situation.

    “Can you take care of your son so that I can take a little bit of rest? He has been hyper active all day”.

    “I had a hectic day at work. I was going to take rest myself. But, it is okay. Let me take care of him for a while”.

    “We need to go out and can you get him ready?” “I am not ready myself. But it is okay, let me do it”.

    “I have invited a couple of your colleagues with their families. I forgot to get a few vegetables. Can you get it for me?” “Well, you have to prepare a list when you go the market. It is okay, let me get it”.

    What was unsolicited offer of help at the young age to the only woman at home, turned out to be a reluctant help when I attained the age of 30-35. Was it because I had the attitude of not helping someone younger than me? Was I afraid that she would take undue advantage with me, if I keep helping her? Was it because I was too tired? No, not really. I truly enjoyed relaxing at home while my spouse worked hard raising the child and taking care of household work.

    Let us fast forward to the present. I was asking myself what happened to that nice guy who used to help his mother in domestic work everyday? My mind went to those childhood memories of playful, happy, enjoyable and risk free life. There was no expectations from my mother that I should do something to help her but I volunteered a lot. When I reached the mid age also, if I didn’t do anything to help my wife, she reconciled to the fact I was lazy and continued with her effort to finish the work. She was not expecting me to help her in domestic work. But, I was not appreciative of her efforts. What I lacked was showing my love through help in domestic work whereas she demonstrated her love by raising my only son and through taking care of all domestic work. She did for so many years without complaining one bit to me.

    Now, I am 60 years old. When my wife keeps the boiled potatoes out, I voluntarily go and peel the skin. When she starts cutting vegetables, I volunteer to help her. When she struggles to open a bottle, I open it for her. If I notice her suffering from health issues, I go and get the OTC or prescription medicines for her. I notice my son immediately obliging his mother when she asks him to get some drinking water or any other groceries she needed.

    I am extending my helping hands to my wife only for the past 6 years i.e. 25 years after our marriage. What changed me to get back to my Good Samaritan character? Is it because I wanted to be an example to my grown up son so that he would help his wife? Do I recognize the same qualities in my wife what I saw in my mother not expecting anything from me after so many years of married life? Is it because my old memories are pleasant, this kind of involvement bring back those pleasant memories?

    I am not sure what the answer is to my question and I leave it to the judgment of the readers. At least, it makes me very happy to see my wife happy now.
     
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  2. mbharani

    mbharani Gold IL'ite

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    Wow what a beautiful post.

    Wish men could help there mothers and wife's. Many Indian men /boys are raised like they are god or something they don't have to do anything coz until they are some age their mom will do later their wife's will do for them and the guys become lazy.

    I have to keep telling my husband to help me or he will just procrastinating , I have to tell my bro to help my mom and later when he is married he should help his wife but he isn't bothered I guess.

    So I have decided if I have boy baby I am going to make him help me and later his wife hopefully I will be able to do that.

    I think when people have kids they should not differentiate between boys and girls but give them same work when helping the moms,parent s should stop differentiating work for boys and gals it should be same shared by both.

    I will definitely show this post to my husband :)
     
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  3. Srama

    Srama IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear V sir,

    As Mrs.V went about doing what is best for your family, I am sure this is the question she must have asked herself innumerable times. Oh yes, I realize I am speaking for her, but I think I have the liberty to do so.

    I want to offer an explanation, perhaps you were occupied with other important things like taking care of the family and making sure they are well provided for and I am sure Mrs.V understood that well. I am sure as a child even though you did not realize that, there must have been an understanding that your dad takes care and the only place you can help is at home, to mom! Perhaps the joys of old age (excuse me for using this term liberally :biggrin2:) has eased some of the stress of having to provide and you are back to your child like self!

    Of course, you know all this, don't you? I am not sure why I offered that elaborate explanation, let us put it down to - I was in the mood! But sir, I was fortunate enough to have been brought up in a house hold where my dad was a constant source of help, not necessarily in the kitchen but definitely with the upkeep of the house. If dad wanted house a certain way, he took the broom and did it which included dusting furniture, cleaning showcase items, removing cob webs, making beds every day and ironing clothes for all of us.

    I enjoyed reading this snippet and yes, my mind is on the equanimity one and will go there soon to respond to that!
     
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  4. Subhashree4u

    Subhashree4u Senior IL'ite

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    It's really a wonderful post.i hope when the retired person finds time to relax himself, also finds time to notice the work load of his wife. I find the same difference with my father.he volunteers a lot to help my mom in domestic work after his retirement and they really enjoy it.

    but it will be very nice when our hubby asks at least shall I help you,.....
     
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  5. Kamla

    Kamla IL Hall of Fame

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    The nice guy is right here Viswa, writing all his thoughts out for us to share and understand what life is all about!

    Basically, you are a nice person, I have no iota of doubt about that! Not all little boys are forthcoming so readily to share his mother's work, especially like grinding for idlis or cleaning the house and coming home early so he can fetch milk. Yes, some of it he may do but must be often told to do so by his mother. You had it in your nature to be ready and offer help. Me being a girl was not still so ready to help out!! I would be lost in some book or the other, but let us not go there! ;-)

    Why you were not so readily helpful in your middle age phase could be that you were really exhausted both mentally and physically making that living. It can be quite demanding.

    Now, at this stage of life, you have come to terms with your lot. You are at peace with yourself and where life has led you. You have more time and inner peace to notice small stuff like wanting to peel potatoes. But if the nice guy was not within you, you would rather stretch your feet out on the table and ask the wifey to bring a cuppa!

    So, have no doubts. Nice guy is all there, within you!

    L, Kamla
     
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  6. jayasala42

    jayasala42 IL Hall of Fame

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    A nice guy, Viswa.
    Normally mothers of those days never wanted help from children, especially male children in the house hold duties.Men were not allowed to touch the broom saying"it is a bad omen and misfortunes would follow'.This is the patriarchy cherished and nourished by women( even now it continues in many parts of the globe)
    All the MIL-DIL disputes hover around this issue even today.Even doctor mothers want only male progeny..

    Reg offering help to one's life partner at the age of 60 or so ,is quite natural in all the families.My Amma used to say "that family life is infected with infatuation in the first five years,play and fun for the next 5, responsibility for the next 20 years in educating and settling down children. When you turn towards your wife/husband each one is nearing 60.Real care starts then"
    Whether there was already a nice guy like viswa, or even a bad guy gets transformed only when all other responsibilities are over.
    You ask any couple.They will say that they are leading an amicable life only after retirement.
    But fortune does not favour everyone.There may be unforeseen sorrowful events-may be the poss of one's own partner, or the grown up kids-in the family. Under those circumstances the good guy may not return or the other partner may not be in a position to accept the timely help rendered by the partner with good intention.
    modern trend is boys are brought up in such a way to help themselves and also share a little bit of domestic requirements. All husbands willingly change the diaper of the babies, bathe the child, feed the baby, make dosas or noodles to the child returning from school.
    But in the tense environment ,even with a single child, with so many extra curriculars thrust, neither the child ,nor the parents are able to appreciate the help rendered with good intention.When they start appreciating openly, perhaps for a year or two, the time is out.Regret alone remains.At least this is the position in 90% of the households.
    Render some noticeable help then and there, start appreciating today itself.
    We cannot wait for waves to subside to take bath in an ocean.
    If care and appreciation become the inseparable part of one's life-at any point of time, one need not regret-the nice guy is there always.

    Thanks viswa, your simple snippet has made me introspect a lot.

    Jayasala 42
     
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  7. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Bharani,

    Thank you for your first response and for your kind words of appreciation. My father was a big role model for me. He was a man of principle, disciplinarian and kind-hearted soul. Even though he never helped my mom in the kitchen, he used to clean refrigerator, iron clothes, clean the house, vehicles, etc. regularly. My brother and I just emulated his wonderful attitude by helping my mother. I became lazy in between and hence was reluctant to help my wife. But, I don't spend a day without appreciating my wife's contribution in raising my son and taking care of domestic work.

    Even now, I work long hours in my business but I got back my nice guy attitude to help my wife. Whether wife works or not, every man should always help his wife in domestic work.

    Viswa
     
  8. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Sabitha,

    I did work long hours while building my career. My wife supported me well during this period but I didn't appreciate her effort as much as I do now. Even now I work long hours but take breaks in between my work and help her as I work from home.

    Just like your father, my father was a role model for me. He helped a lot in house-keeping despite his work schedules. He also had a hobby of repairing electronic products and he used to do that for free for all his colleagues. We emulated him as children.

    I drifted a little, was lazy in the mid-age and didn't appreciate the contributions of my wife. As part of introspection, I recognize my wife's equal contribution for the well-being of our family. My father had a wisdom to recognize it early.

    Viswa
     
  9. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Subhashree,

    I am yet to retire but whenever I see the behavior, attitude and temperament of my son, I am able to see the contributions of my wife. When he excels in his studies, I see her effort in coaching him as a young boy. When I feel very proud of him, I am introspecting my contribution to his growth and how much time I spent with him. It was negligible.

    I traveled a lot internationally and worked long hours. My wife compensated for me by showering so much love. Frankly, my son melts in love when he thinks of his mom. When I help her, he finds it comforting.

    Viswa
     
  10. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Kamla,

    It is always a pleasure when you visit one of my posts. More so, when it is a casual visit and not when the post is nominated. If I am a nice guy, the credit goes to my father. He was a great human being with wonderful heart. Every time I think of him, tears roll down my eyes.

    Yes, the work was so demanding in my mid-age. I couldn't spend much time with my son. But I could have been more appreciative of her contributions. My head recognized me as a great executive but my heart failed in making me a good father. The age makes ones heart tender. I use my heart more now than my head. Even now I work long hours but when work is over, I join my family with my wet heart appreciating everything I see around. I am more inclined to make my little contributions and feel good. As I said it makes me feel happy to see my wife happy.

    Viswa
     

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