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Each generation of parents develops its signature parenting style. Three millennial parents share what they want to tell their children about growing up and finding their place in the world; letters from the heart.
Head of Operations & Partnerships, Baliyo Nepal Nutrition Initiative
To my son and daughter,
I am going to take a moment and write to you about what I want you to learn in life. I know you are too young to understand this now, but I do hope that you will surely comprehend what I want to share with you at some point in your life.
Be respectful: Life is full of ups and downs, sometimes you may reach the top, and sometimes you may not. Whatever you do in life and wherever you reach, always respect people for who they are but not what they have. Everyone in life deserves respect, from the house help to the CEO of the biggest company. You, as a good human being, should be always respectful towards everyone.
Be trustworthy: Always complete your commitments. Do your best, never let anyone get you down. Fulfil your duties as a friend, a member of the family, and a professional (whichever path you choose). Your word should carry the weight, and your actions should speak in volume about what kind of person you are.
Be humble: Your achievements are worthless if you forget your ground and realise that you are not the only person to achieve this, but you are the only small part among the large number. Your humility is the ship that helps you to sail through thick and thin. Being humble does not mean that you are weak rather it shows how strong you are.
Be kind: Kindness is a virtue that very few people have in today’s world. It brings people close to you and they will be open and helpful towards you. Always remember, ‘what goes around comes around’. It is the law of karma, if you are kind to the world, the world also becomes kind to you.
Always with you,
CEO & Founder, Sastobook
When you read this letter, you would come of age and understand the ups and downs of life. Sometimes its success and other times its failure but never get disheartened. Share both success and failure with your family and friends, it makes everything easier. People are the colours of life, they add flavour to the life we live, making every moment different. Like the colours, there are many different people, each varying in personality and character, each with their own ideologies and beliefs. So, at times even when someone is wrong, maybe s/he is right in her/his own sense.
What I want to tell you is, empathy is the biggest virtue in the modern world. So, before you make up your mind about someone or a particular situation, do empathise. Before you commit to any action, put yourself in their shoes. The colours that people add to life come from their experiences, upbringings, situations and so on. At times when there are actions committed, always understand there’s more to a picture.
A painting tries but never fully portrays the emotion of an artist. This is the quality of my mother that I remember the most. From the incidence of maid’s stealing to the arguments and heated discussion with individuals, rifts between family and friends, she always lets go of her ego and stance, and always listens to what others have to say, reverses the roles, and finally puts forward her opinion. Seeing her, I am actually amazed how an individual has so much tolerance for nuisance. When we asked her about why she let go of situations lightly she always says “what if it was you or me.”
‘Empathy’ is a big word, and you usually learn its meaning and use later during your student years. But, I would say this moral virtue should be taught from early years and engraved in our new generation as it is a true definition of being human.
Your loving dad,
Mamta Gurung Joshi
My beautiful baby,
First of all, I would like to thank you for choosing me as your mother and making me feel complete and loved by coming into my life, mero pyaro Aarav (Sanaa Raja). I have been changed into a better person with a precious title as ‘mother’ and indeed motherhood is the most rewarding relationship.
I want you to enjoy your childhood. I also want you to learn and experience so many different things and see what you like and enjoy doing the most, cutie. I would love to celebrate your achievements. As a mother, I want you to have all the happiness in the universe and all the amazing things in life. I would also like to teach you our traditional values which are your culture and responsibility too. You are lucky to born in an affectionate household with a super loving and caring grandmother, Chandni (Mamuni), who will teach you her knowledge, family values and the best life skills. I feel at ease, your grandmother will be inculcating all the important values and lessons of life in you; the best part is you will learn to respect and treat women equally.
The best teaching in life I believe is the actions we take in our daily life and people we choose to spend time with because we learn so much consciously and subconsciously. And I am happy that it will come to you from your pampering grandmother, caring father, genius Phupu, nurturing Babu, loving Thulo Mamu, and fun loving Dada haru.
I am immensely happy to share the teaching responsibility of you with your caring father, Pranaya (Raji), who keeps you humble and disciplined. You are a beautiful extension and a masterpiece combination of both of us.
I want you to respect the elders, love the younger ones, make lots of friends and enjoy life. We will give you the best education so that you will be well versed with all the necessary strengths to face all the challenges in life which will help you grow. I love the way you enjoy music, dancing, singing, swimming, and other activities which are food for your soul. I love to see your hips swinging and happy feet when you hear music. I know you can achieve everything in life. Always believe in yourself and work hard to achieve your goals mero mutu. It might sound like an ongoing list Raja, but I really hope these suggestions will guide you and help you to pave your way to a bright and successful future.
• Your health means top priority to me so no compromises with food; you are what you eat so choose wisely.
• Take nothing in life for granted like family or friends.
• Learn to be just and wise.
• Don’t be quick to judge and don’t belittle anyone.
• Get out of your comfort zone to learn new things.
• The fastest way to learn is being observant and travelling to new places.
• Have a clear conscience of right and wrong.
• Make friends like family, they will be blessings of strength and love.
• Remember, words are very powerful so unless you don’t mean it don’t say it because it can make or break the relationships.
• Enjoy and love your work, so choose what you love to do.
• Master your strengths and understand your weaknesses. It will be different forms of emotions be it love, anger, joy, sadness or ego. Anger, guilt and hate are difficult is the toxic emotions. So, learn to forgive.
• Situations are best handled in a calm state of mind.
• ‘Karma is reaping what you sow’, so always do good things whenever possible it will return tenfold and likewise with bad ones.
• Make time for fun and to do things you love.
• Originality is always unique, different and beautiful so never hesitate to create and invent and to make mistakes in doing so.
• Luck favours the courageous ones, so be friendly and outgoing.
I will always be there to uplift your spirits, guide you, nurture you and help you overcome your fears and challenges.
We all have a different perspective regarding success; whatever keeps you happy is also a successful life sweetheart. Your accomplishments can be in the form of living a healthy lifestyle, with a loving family, recognition, name and fame. It all depends on how you look at what success is. I would like to request you to be transparent with me regarding everything and share all your deepest troubles and anxieties. I will never judge you for anything, my baby. I know in my heart that, with your nature, you will be a warm-hearted, loving, caring, appreciative, humble, successful and happy. I wish you all the happiness, love, best health, peace, luck, wisdom and success of the world Mero pukuley munchkin. I treasure and cherish this relationship the most my little one and I know you will do the same, my beautiful baby boy.
Your ever loving,