“Why do you talk so much?” I asked my daughter one day, when she was around four years old. I always find her talking, or asking questions or giving suggestions, but she has to voice her thoughts in all ways possible. So here’s her answer, ” There are ideas (read as ‘thoughts’) coming into my mind non-stop so I have to talk to bring them all out”. I looked at her and wondered how draining it is to have an overflowing mind. She gave a very logical reason to her banters.
I was used to a quiet house until my daughter arrived, with her non-stop thoughts and queries. She knows a lot, I don’t know how. She grasps a little more than her age allows. She has the courage to ask questions to clear her doubts and puts us in a fix. Her ears are razor-sharp, she catches conversations from a mile away and comes running to learn more.
Her questions are always interesting and thought provoking. While walking her to the bus stop, one day, she asked, “Where is Earth?”. I replied, “This is Earth, the whole world you see around you.”. “No, this is Abu Dhabi (We were staying in Abu Dhabi then), where is Earth?”. I tried to explain, ” Abu Dhabi is a place on Earth. It’s a planet where we all live.” She was very upset and adamant that Abu Dhabi is not part of the Earth, it is a world, on its own. Earth must be somewhere else. Her argument was so strong I almost agreed with her. Whole of my day went in thinking how to convince this headstrong girl that we are Earth-dwellers.
She was and is obsessed with age. Whoever visited us had to submit their age with her. Once, traveling by bus with about fifty people around us,she asked loudly what my age was. I lied as confidently as I can, with all those people enjoying it with smug smiles.
Back from India trip, where she had interactions with my Mother and Grandmother (who was confined to bed due to illness), her mind began spinning thoughts about aging. I explained her how each person has to age, from a baby – child- young person- old person – very old person ( her contribution). That night she woke up to go to the bathroom. Somehow, the toilet seat is a place where brainwaves skim. I heard her crying. When asked what was the matter, she told she didn’t want me to die. So I asked her to elaborate. She said, “When I am older, you will be like granny, granny will be like great granny and then one day you will fall sick and die. Again I had to stand at the toilet door and explain to her that I am not likely to die soon. She went quiet again which means her mind was in full action. She announced, Dad will surely die once he is old. I waited until she was out of that toilet seat and again lectured (an expert by now) that we cannot stop people from dying but have to enjoy each other’s company when alive. I didn’t know how much that overworked mind grasped but she calmed down.
By now, I have spoken at length on why ladies have breasts, why moms with kids have jelly bellies, is it compulsory to have kids if yes, how many! Not to forget spiritual, philosophical questions about why we need to pray, why God doesn’t appear if he is everywhere (even in toilets??), rebirths, reincarnations. Interesting ones like why husbands are always older than the wives, why girls have to go away from parents after marriage. (Look forward to these topics as blogs!!)
Though sometimes tiresome, I am glad she is asking questions. Glad her mind is ticking non-stop. I am the happiest that she thinks I have all the answers. Her questions, in return gets me thinking too, to come up with appropriate answers. Of course, I do evade questions about babies and periods (I hate those Whisper ads!) telling her there are a few things she will understand when she is a little older and has to wait till then. But with a promise that I will surely answer them (I preparing for that already!).
This is one prominent part of her childhood I will always hold dear. We are weaving memories together with these questions and answer sessions. Though sometimes we dread when she comes with that look in her eyes, we always enjoy her theories and opinions that pour out in a steady stream. Hope the chatter and questions never stop, the brainstorming sessions continue, for they bring in so much more to life.