“I want water”
It was 10pm. Rabad should have been asleep about an hour ago, but wasn’t. So she was slightly cranky too. But every once in a while, we decide that spoonfeeding is not on.
“Go get it yourself from the fridge.”
“But it dark there.”
After about 5 minutes of fruitlessly trying to convince her that she shouldn’t be afraid of the dark, and that she should quickly go to the fridge and get the water, I asked Meetu to check if the kitchen was indeed dark. We can see the dining room / kitchen from our bedroom if we crane our neck a bit. The dining room light was in fact on!
“The light is on. It is not dark. Go get water.”
Rabad remained unmoved. She was still afraid and wanted one of us to accompany her. I doubt she was very thirsty, but this unqueched desire for water that her parents weren’t fulfilling was preventing her from falling asleep, and she was getting crankier by the minute. So finally I worked out some compromise where in return for me coming with her to the kitchen, she would give up some privilege (the details are unimportant for this story) at a later date.
So I walked over to the kitchen with her and she got her water.
“See, it is not dark or scary in here. You could have come by yourself.”
“No but it is dark in the guest bedroom.”
The guest bedroom is the next room after the dining room.
“The water is not in the guest bedroom, you don’t have to go there.” I point out (feeling like congratulating myself with a ‘Logic meiN tum se koi nahiN jeet sakta Tarneja!’)
I think Rabad saw the inexorable power of my logic, but she had an ace up her sleeve.
“My brain told me.”
Being in the company of my kids for so long, I’ve become good at putting two and two together.
“Your brain told you to be afraid?”
I think Shakespeare was saying pretty much the same thing when he said, “for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” And that is also more or less what they taught Meetu during 10 days of Vipassana.
“Why did your brain tell you to be afraid?”
“Because ants might come from there.”
I gave her a what-kind-of-a-silly-excuse-is-that look.
With an expression and tone that clearly indicated that she felt my pain, but she was powerless to do anything about it because it wasn’t her fault, she said, “It is a baby brain, you know.”