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Hridhaan v0.5

My dearest Hridhaan, as your turn 0.5 today, on your dad’s birthday, here is my attempt to eternally Thank you for coming in our lives, giving us an entirely new meaning of life and to share a few experiences as a father that will surely help you unfold yourself in this beautiful world!

Exactly 6 months ago, when your beautiful mother gave birth to you, it was the most beautiful and the happiest moment of our lives. You came early as a premature kid of 7 months, probably because we couldn’t wait for more to see you and hold you in our arms. You were so tiny and we had a wave of fear and anxiety for the next 50 days until your doctor finally told that you were healthy and we need not worry. I have all the respect and love (I expect the same from you) for your mother and grandmother who brought their heart out to care, nurture and love you through those difficult days. I was a mere spectator who could only selflessly pray that you get healthier. Come, see yourself how you looked on that very special day when you waved us your first “Hi!”

As you grew healthier and more active, the world seemed to have stopped for me. It was just you who occupied my mind, left, right and center. All my personal quenches for materialistic needs started to fade away magically. It was then all about you as it is today and as it will always be!

Every new move that you made, your first smile, oh man, I have treasured that moment in my heart forever. Your first stare at your dad, was like “Hey Dad, Just wait for me, don’t have all the fun alone, I will grow very soon and we will have fun together.” And I was like with teary eyes, “Sure son, anything you want to go ahead and achieve, I will be there to support you, push you, love you! Waiting for you to talk to me and we can go swimming together, play cricket, TT, Badminton, anything you want together.”

I don’t know when will I be able to say and share a lot of experience I have had with life but as you grow, I want to share a few experiences about the most important things in life!

God/Faith – God loves you, no matter what. Stay true to yourself and always love and serve Him. Stay devoted to whatever you believe in – RadhaSoami or some other faith despite all the temptations you will have from the world to leave. Be a man of faith in your supernatural god and always be thankful to him for the beautiful life you have in all the bad as well as good times. Do good Karma and leave everything to him! He will surely take care of you as he has taken care of your dad and your forefathers!

Culture/Values – It’s pretty easy in the world to get carried away towards negative things. Your mom and I will always show you the difference between right and wrong. Our faith will always push you towards respecting your elders, see everyone equally irrespective of class or color or religion or whatever, always love everyone around you, serve the poor and everyone in need. Never ever lose your values, they define who you are! Never ever get tempted to sacrifice your values for a little temporary comfort or pleasure. It is never, ever worth it. If you ever feel double-minded, I am just a call away 🙂

See below how your great-grandmother is so fond of you. Always pay respect to her as you grow.

Education - School isn’t always going to be fun. It wasn’t for us either. But, it is very important to have a quality education, if you want to have a good career, if you want to make lifelong friends and learn teamwork! Never be satisfied that you know enough. Become a lifelong learner. Always keep that curious child in you alive. As we grow old, we generally tend to lose curiosity. Never ever do that. Be insatiably curious about other people and life in general. Never aim for mediocrity. Do whatever you want to do in Life but aim high always!

Work Ethic - 50% of your life will probably be spent working, achieving your dreams! Nothing in life is truly free. Work hard always and you will be rewarded. Never aim for mediocrity in whatever you do in life. Always aim to be the best and out-hustle everyone around you. Make sure to pay your dues and no matter what you hear later in life, I promise you there is no easy path to riches and there is no substitute for hard work. And I know, I know very well, this part sounds just like Papa!! But trust me, this is the part that will teach you life and make a man out of you, my boy!

Do you want to see your first step in your dad’s office? 😀 See here:

Love - You will meet lots and lots of girls in your life. Treat them all with dignity and respect. Care more about their inner beauty than their outward appearance. You will know you are in love when your knees go soft, your stomach has butterflies and you can’t stop thinking about her as the most beautiful girl you have ever seen. Then what? Get to know her, build a relationship and take the time to see if she is the ONE. You will eventually know if she is and she will be looking at you in the same way. The eyes will tell you! Be counter-cultural, do the right thing and save yourselves for marriage. In your times, I am sure the world might make fun of you, but honestly, god will love you for being yourself and that is what matters!

As I said, the eyes will tell you. See for yourself, the love for you and your mother in my eyes and vice-versa in the following pictures:

Responsibility - As you grow and become naughty, I am sure You will hear your mom and I say this a million times: “You need to be more responsible!” Well, you will have to! Someone has to be responsible, why not you? If you are involved in an activity or project, act responsible and be a leader. If you make a mess, clean it up. If you say you will do something, do it. Be a man of your words! One of my scientist seniors always told me, “Don’t wait for an opportunity, create it and then grab it and execute it.” Your dad has always been executing responsibilities throughout and believe me, I can’t be more thankful to have got such a life! Don’t wait for somebody else to take responsibility. It may be up to you.

Friendship - Make friends and be true to yourself and your them. Hang out with people who share your values. Be a good enough friend to others that you always tell them the truth. This is the sign of a true friend. If your friends go down a path you know is wrong, stand your ground and do not follow. The tricky thing about friendship is you sometimes find yourself alone because you are committed to following the teachings of your parents or your faith or the values you learned. Trust me on this one – never abandon your faith or your values to follow the crowd for temporary comfort. On the other hand, you will hopefully have a few close friends who stay with you a lifetime and they are to be treasured as gifts from God.

Be Real - Don’t ever pretend to be someone else. You are who God created you to be. Don’t be tempted to hide your true self, your faith or what you really think, from others. One my favorite quotes “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” Always try to keep this in your mind.

“Life is like the color red, take it as the holy tilak or blood”. It’s always about perception. Always be positive, even in the most difficult times of your lives and you will sail through the storms with smiles!

Finally, always struggle to be a good man! Being a Man is a Blessing. You have the divine pleasure of walking through life like a lion. Strong, smart and wise. Exercise these traits in everything you do. But never forget love, love of self, love of family, love of people around you because all of the hope of life, and the energy from within my soul and your god lives within you whether we are physically here or not. Protect and serve the weak, love God first and love your family in truth and passion. Follow your dreams!

Below is a three months old Hridhaan and his welcome cake!

Your daddy is your best friend and will always be. I pledge to be there for you whenever you need me! Never hesitate, I am just a call away, my true love!

Lots and lots of Love always! 🙂

Papa


Ankit Khatri

Written by Ankit Khatri who lives in Jaipur, Rajasthan India. You should follow him on Twitter