My Daughter's Gift to Me
It started raining again in the evening today. My daughter Ariaana had been watching promos of English Vinglish and wanted me to take her for the film. I knew it would be tough to get tickets for a show on a Sunday evening for a film that had received great reviews. I didn't want to get her hopes up so I said, “I don’t know if we’ll get tickets.”
She threw her arms down in exasperation and replied, “Of course we’ll get tickets.”
I looked at her quite surprised and smiled. “You have a positive attitude!”
She asked, “What’s a positive attitude?” She’s four. She has attitude. She doesn’t know it yet.
“It means that you think things will be done, things can happen and good things will come your way,” I explained to the best of my ability.
She shrugged her shoulders and said very nonchalantly, “Ya.”
When we reached the theatre the person told me there was only one ticket available. Or there were two seats in separate places. I pleaded with the ticket agent. “Mujhe apni beti ke saath baithna hai. Aur agla show bohat late ho jayega. Kal school hai aur usko film dekhni thi. (I need to sit with my kid. The next show will be too late since she has school tomorrow. She really wanted to watch the film.)
The ticket agent replied, “Peeche ka sofa seat hai. Aap dono fit ho jaoge. (There’s one sofa seat. Both of you will fit on it.)”
So I bought two tickets to squeeze into one seat and as soon as I got the tickets Ariaana squealed, “See I told you! I told you we would get tickets!”
I loved the movie and she loved the popcorn. But I learnt a lesson from her today. I learnt that there was no “negative attitude” in her life. She didn’t know what positive or negative was. She just knew that she would get what she wanted. It didn’t matter if we had to squeeze in together. We had popcorn. She danced on the songs. She kissed me every time Sridevi’s kids hurt her and she cried. We had a blast on our Sunday evening. I don’t know if she will remember it in a few years time. But I will.
And she taught me life’s biggest lesson. From today I will never say `it cannot be done.’ Her nonchalant “Ya” was a way of saying that’s how she lived life; Believing it would happen. Making it happen. Putting faith in yourself or in something bigger to let it happen. That’s what life is about. And somewhere along we have become so cynical, bitter and negative that we don’t believe anymore. We’ve lost faith. My daughter taught me that we can never do that. As children we were innocent and believed that we could conquer the world. We don’t need to be innocent today but we still need to have that positive energy.
I may have taught my child how to read and write. But today she taught me how to live again.
P.S - This is a photo of Ariaana and me when she was 10 months old. She's 4 + now.