“Your siblings are the only people in the world who know what it’s like to have been brought up the way you were.” – Betsy Cohen
I happened to witness this particular incident at school and it made me realize how blessed we are to have siblings, not really understanding the true meaning of that relationship.
Four kids were caught in a fight and they were two pairs of siblings. Nina is 7 years old and Lalita is 8 years old. They are siblings and come from an underprivileged home in the outskirts of Jaipur. Kanan who is 8 and Kavita who is 7 are siblings and hail from a humble urban poor sector which is also in the outskirts of Jaipur. All of their names have been changed as they are my students and I don’t want them to know that I use their fights as material for me to blog. (Yes, I know that I’m doing just that!) I walked into class one afternoon to see these four kids standing in their seats and crying. I mean, these kids are ruffians and have mouths which need to be washed out with soap but four of them crying does tend to make your heart melt, don’t you think? So, there I was in a class where the rest of the kids are silently watching my co-teacher kindly talk to these four kids. Nina was running down the corridor or something and by mistake, pushed Kavita down. Kavita got a little bump in the process and started bawling which ended by complaining to her elder brother Kanan. Kanan, my class mafia head, filled with rage, scouted her out and slapped her five-six times across the face. Nina starts bawling, of course from the pain and the shock and draws the attention of her little sister, Lalita who decides that she needs to even the score with Kanan. She ran up to him and jumped on him and hit him hard enough to make him cry. As much as I wanted to scold them for being naughty little brats, I started tearing up at the thought of siblings who were ready to fight with older boys just to take revenge. Yes, I was sort of proud of these kids as much as I didn’t want to admit it.
Picture courtesy: http://ih1.redbubble.net/image.8621589.5105/flat,550×550,075,f.u1.jpg
As I deal with kids on an everyday basis, I realize after every passing day that sibling love is something which just cannot be explained. Four siblings who come from an abusive home and make you believe that they hate each other, but the same siblings who come to school along with her elder sister when they has a holiday as she needs to give a test and is too weak to travel on her own. A sibling who is upset and distracted all day because the doctor said that her sister is suffering from a serious case of Dengue. A brother who drags his little brother and sister to an extra hour of class at the end of the day just so that they can learn and get ahead in class.
Photo by Talukdar Lopamudra
You can say that friends have probably replaced your siblings over the years but honestly, you were born with these friends. You needn’t have gone looking anywhere. They were right there, pulling your hair, calling you hairy, punching you, telling on you, not giving the right signal and getting you into trouble, bullying you, hating you, being embarrassed of you, belittling you, making fun of you, yelling at you, hurting you and trying to tell you… “I love you…” through it all. If only we’d noticed then. We spent all that time, trying to hate each other and compete with each other that we honestly forgot that no matter how much we loathed each other, we were always going to be SIBLINGS.
“I who have no sisters or brothers look with some degree of innocent envy on those who may be said to be born to friends.” – James Boswell