I know it might sound cocky, selfish, arrogant, and whatever first person emotion you want to attach to it, but seriously tell me. When was the last time you praised yourself? Gave yourself a pat on the back, gave yourself a treat? Or are you still expecting the person who has never done that to come do it for you? Or do you think you deserve praise only from others and not from yourself? Oh! Grow up! You think the world is gonna shower itself on you for all the things you do? For all that you are? You are sadly mistaken. Maybe if what you do and who you are is a mountain instead of a molehill, you might be lucky enough to get noticed. Even then, it is a risk that would need to be pulled off very neatly. But for all the small things that you do, don’t even expect the risk to back you up. You are all by yourself, whether you like it or not. And don’t think that you are going to be raised on that pedestal; just wish that if you do, you are lucky enough to not get hurt too much when you fall off it.
We all do things thinking that somewhere down the line, it will pay up and that we will get our dues worth. That is quite human, in fact more so when you have been taught to do good deeds without expecting any results. We are always looking for people’s approval, their take on our actions, if we were correct in doing something or not. Even when we know we have done something right, we need just that one nod or smile to put us at ease, that what we did, was the right thing to do. It is every child looking up to its parents for that candy it was promised, for eating its vegetables. Few get it, are happy with it, others get it, but keep yearning for more, like they are shopping coupons – the more you get, the more life gets ‘discounted’ for you, whereas the rest never gets it
Now, I’m not sure which category to belong to. (If you do already belong to one… good for you.) And, what if I don’t want to belong to any of these and remain independent. You know like those independent parties contesting the elections, hoping for that one stroke of luck that they will win! What if I don’t need anyone’s approval other than my own? As a matter of fact, I don’t think I have ever belonged to any category at all. For as long as I can remember, I have been my own person. That is not to say that I have lived my life to however, and whatever I wished it to be. My! If only I had the guts to do that… I would surely be in a different world altogether – maybe for better, maybe for worse. My parents have done the best parenting ever, and they still are; that goes without a doubt. They have made me and my sister experience everything that an individual needs to experience – through our own mettle. I am proud to say that whatever I am in life today, is because I am born out of them. And nothing and nobody in this whole damn world can do anything to change that. They have never expected anything out of me, apart from what I am capable of giving. And it is this ‘capability’ that has given me the strength to take on anything… anyone.
It might be foolish to say that I have never sought the approval of my parents. Of course I have! When I was a child, I would try to write as neatly as possible, in my best handwriting. My dad was a stickler in matters of handwriting. He used to make me and my sister do ‘handwriting practice’ at least for half of our summer vacations. But, when we were done with our writing, we never went to him, for him to take a look and tell us – “good job”. We knew that when he came to know about it (and that he always would) he would be proud and that was enough for us. Even if he would point out a flaw, there would always be a look on his face that would say, “You have done me proud”. Even today, when we achieve something, purely out of our own ‘capability’, we know that our parents are proud of us, without us even having to tell them anything.
Is it because of the fact that I don’t yearn for their approval? Is it because I am too cocky to give them credit for it? Is it because I feel I am too good for myself to do any better? It might be any or all of these… in their own credible circumstances. But, I feel it is largely because I have looked at my own approval of what I am, before asking for anyone else’s. I know what I am, what I am capable of and so do my parents. They are a splendid extension of what I believe myself to be. I have always felt that you need to look at yourself from your own eyes, before you borrow someone else’s. And believe me, you won’t need to borrow anyone else’s, not even your parents’; it wouldn’t do you justice at all.