Tag Archives: Childhood

My tryst with Beggars

Incident 1: The Sin

During my college days, we used to have a lot of construction workers living in the boundary of the college. Their kids used to roam around in the college. As a part of the social club of our college, we had decided to teach these kids. Over the period, the kids got acquainted with us. Many times that these kids used to ask for 2-3 rupees to get a pen or pencil. We never hesitated in giving them the same. One day He had taken a 2 Rs coin. Just an hour after it, I spotted him at the college entrance gate. He went to a Pan shop and got a tobacco packet. I was stunned to realize that Indirectly I have been feeding that tobacco to him.

Then I decided to stick to my family’s principle to feed a beggar/needy to the fullest,  but never give him money.

Incident 2: Feeding the hungry

Next time when I was in Mumbai I saw a kid outside McDonald’s. He was there with his mom. The mother kept asking us to give a burger only for the kid and she doesn’t want anything for herself. Sitting inside the restaurant, I couldn’t take my eyes off the activities of the kid. So finally I gave up, got a burger and gave it to him.

Surprisingly next two times, when I went to that place I again saw the mother and kid there. I was angry by this time and questioned her why she keeps sitting there. She explained it to me that someone offered a burger to the kid and now he is unwilling to eat the normal food prepared. She said it would have been very cheap and easy to prepare food worth a few bucks and feed completely to the kid. But it is almost impossible to feed him with the burgers or anything else which is so costly.

Incident 3: The empathy

By now, I had made up my mind that I shall help in giving something permanent to any beggar or nothing. I thought of giving them something which shall help them in long term.

Unfortunately, I faced a similar situation just 10 days after the McD incident. It was raining heavily that day. I was going in a cab somewhere. The cab took a long time at a signal due to some congestion. I saw two kids selling some items in that rain on a traffic signal. I saw an honest effort to make money there than simply begging. They were wearing just a vest on the top and were fully drenched in the rain. So, I couldn’t resist but offer my umbrella to one of them. He could have accepted but he was indeed a genuine guy. He smilingly told me that it will be better if I buy something from him. If he starts using a raincoat or an umbrella then people who shall be buying from him out of empathy, they too shall not buy.

Incident 4: Finding the best way

Finally one day, outside a mall I again saw a group of kids. They were selling some sketchbooks and the basic elementary books like that of ABCD. This time I thought let me take a book from him but I had no use. Then I thought about it and took a book from him after agreed payment. Immediately I tore down the cover pages of it. I asked the kid did you ever get a chance to read it and he replied with a no. I handed over him the same book and said do read it this time. Now he had no option to sell that again.

An hour after while coming out of the mall, I saw those kids again.  the kids were done with selling all their books and were sitting on the footpath. One was holding the book that I gave them and the other four were sitting with a flower formation around him. I was happy to see this. I thought maybe this is the best thing I could have done –  something which will help them for the future.

the child that doesn’t age

Arush – my nephew was here at our place, his nana’s place and no doubt he was the king – everything that was going around was driven by him. Even the timetable of the home was adjusted according to his sleep cycles. Talking particularly about my parents, they shower love on him to an extent which they didn’t on us, may be because in our childhood they had to play the dual role of spreading love as well as being strict.

One day when he was fast asleep in the noon, his mother thought it was the right time for her to take out 15 minutes which she was trying to get for 3 days now. So, she left home for doing the work. However, at about same time some kids from neighborhood came to home and amidst this Arush was wide awake now. He started crying as soon as he got up. All of us were trying turn by turn to take him and pacify him, but he didn’t even allow us to go near him.

Soon after this his mother arrived. He let her take him in her arms and pacify. In between, he cried bit more and showed some aggression towards her. It was difficult for her to control him as he was no more an infant. But then she kept her hands on his chest, on his face, on his head and this act worked wonders, little boy found his peace in this small activity. Finally when his aggression was diminishing, she forcefully hugged him. Initially he resisted this too, but eventually he gave in and rested in his mother’s arms. After some time he slept with final traces of tears on his cheeks.

Two days after this, we went to a temple and Arush was in full energy mode that day. He was running here and there, laughing and playing. All of us were enjoying this sight, but his mother was asking him to stop running or his legs will pain at night. Unfortunately her prediction came true; the boy started crying at 11 and continued to do so for 2 hours. In these two hours he would not let anyone else come around him, he was being aggressive even to his mother, he even bit her twice and tried scratching her face. May be he was complaining that ‘I trusted you, you should have taken care of me…I am dependent on you’. Somehow his mother again forcefully took control of him and did some massage, which relieved his pain a bit. Finally she took him in her lap and tried to put him to sleep; he slept.

 

As a kid I had learnt that as humans progress even the stages of evolution do impact on the evolved being. If observed closely, the evolution can be seen in every  human being. The circumstances play a major role in what he has become.

 

May be we still have that part of kid left in us which has aggressive part of love stored. But as we grow up, we have to act mature and stay responsible for our acts. So we stay calm. When we have to choose that one person who has the importance of magnitude similar to a parent, we try to find that same peace in the person. We want to be dependent on him/her. We want to trust him/her so much that if we fall during our journey, he/she must pick us up. We want that person to absorb our aggression and even when we are stuck in a difficult situation and don’t find a way out, that person should come to us and say “I am with you’ with a big tight hug. Even when we grow up, we want to remain vulnerable in front of that person.