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Their powers of negotiation….kids vs us

His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare

As I stared at this teeny weeny little baby…in my head, these lines from ‘Macavity’ in the ‘Old Possum Book of Practical Cats’ by TS Eliot transformed into….

His powers of negotiation would make his mater stare

Of course I was deeply impressed that the musical Cats chose to pronounce fakir as faker when I saw it way back in 199…..thus lending itself beautifully to my version of the line!

Ah well, let me get to the point.

Life is all about negotiating the best deal for yourself, isn’t it? And who practices it better than children. Even as newborn babies, the human instinct for survival is so strong that a baby would probably push away his mother if her breasts were dry and the devil were holding the bottle of milk out!

My kids do that all the time! One minute I am the best mother in the world and kisses are being bestowed, the next minute I am the worst creature on earth for trying to discipline Aadyaa. The emotional trauma that creates is not entirely something she is unaware of. That is her negotiating tool to get what she wants. She knows it, I know it, but yet more time than not, I give in!

She negotiated to wear that lehenga...and how!

She negotiated to wear that lehenga…and how!

Udai too, will always pitch his demands at a level slightly more unreasonable than what he is willing to settle for, knowing well that the adult mind is habituated to bargaining to get things moving slightly in their favour. When I say ‘yes’ to a proposal without any questions, like going for an extra half hour of play on a hot afternoon, he vamooses within a split second, lest I change my mind!

He is the most straightforward kid, and even he negotiates!

He is the most straightforward kid, and even he negotiates!

It’s a great thing, this ability to negotiate. A good negotiator gets far in life. So I’m resolving to sharpen the negotiating abilities of my kids by not giving in to anything without a little tussle, a teeny weeny back and forth, a mini turf war…..makes life so much fun!

 

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