I was born and (mostly) raised in Canada. My parents were clueless FOBs (fresh off the boat) and I blame them for my thoroughly awkward upbringing. I was a total geeky loser in school, yes right up to high school. My post is absolutely not related to my traumatized childhood, I just wanted to get that off my chest.
In the many years I spent in Pakistan I learned the importance of plastic shopping bags and yogurt containers. Also that if you aren’t quick at weddings when they signal dinner, you will find there is no coke left. Or chicken broast. So don’t be shy.
monsters kids in Karachi has given me, besides nerves of steel and the amazing ability to not go pee for 48 hours, some multicultural expertise I feel I must bestow on non-desi moms.
1. You can live without water: When there is no electricity for 9 hours straight you can count on running out of water. The kids need a shower. What the hell do you think baby powder was invented for? Douse those little buggers with it. Sprinkle it in their puppy dog smelling hair and dust it out. Not only will the greasiness be replaced with powderiness, the powder will absorb all further sweating. Inevitable since there’s no electricity and its 40 degrees in the house.
2. Never throw away plastic bags: Keep plastic bags handy in the car, in all your handbags and purses even in your jeans’ pockets. Teenager 2 always got car sick as a little boy. I could catch his involuntary projectile of gastric juice without blinking. Plastic bags are also good for when there is no gas station on a road trip. Or if you are in Karachi, where the gas stations are so dirty your child would prefer to poop his pants.
3. Don’t buy toys: You know very well that once the box is opened it takes about 3 and a half minutes for the charm of that $35 toy to disappear completely. My mother-in-law could keep Middle Child busy for hours with her empty plastic pill containers. The allure lay in the fact that the containers could be closed and opened again and again and again and….
4. Kids need to be spanked: Your kid needs to know you are the boss. If you think “let’s talk about what you are feeling right now” and “we need to think about the consequences” is working than you are a dummy mummy. That is Junior knowing he got away with it by showing remorse he certainly doesn’t feel, he or she is already planning the next escapade. Spank that kid! Just ask Russel Peters…”Somebody’s a gonna get a hurt!”
5. A good sweater can be used for at least four siblings. Oh yes I did. In the span of ten years. We still have the sweater.
6. Never praise your kids in their presence: Always ask them why they can’t be more like your sister’s children, your cousin’s children, your neighbor’s children, your brother-in-law’s children, anybody’s children. It keeps them competitive, no of course it will not hurt their self-esteem.
7. Always one up other moms: Don’t let your sister, your cousin, your neighbor or anyone else have the last word on their children’s achievements. Whatever they say is 50% exaggeration, beat them with their own rules. Example? Your child got her black belt last year. So what if she was only five?
Stay posted for more Desi tips.