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4 things we must do as families

04 August 2015, 15:00 Shakila Alivitsa

Nairobi - Today’s parents do not know their children.

Procreate, give birth and pass them on-to the help! I will not be the first person to throw a stone either.

In our current state it is hard enough to juggle your career and your schedule. Then you are in school trying to add onto your degree so that you do not stay stagnant in a position or worse, demoted. People are out here getting PhDs. A degree and experience is no longer enough. The better the pay, the better the education you can give those children who are misbehaving. So I do understand where the parents are coming from when they do not have time to sit because by the time they get home, the children are asleep. If they have not learnt how to sneak out yet.

Bringing me to the first tradition.

Eating meals together

This days, the best families are the ones that can at least make even a Sunday work when it comes to having a meal together. If the dad is there, the children are not. If the mother is there, the father is not. If the children are there, the parents are not. There is always something happening. Work does not sleep these days. The parents have to keep good relations with the boss, hence the weekend at his or her house. The children are buried under homework to prevent them from getting into any mischief. If you lucky to get away at five you might have to contend with Mombasa road traffic or some other one of the same. It is hard getting everybody together at the same time unless you are planning to keep the children up until ten in the night.

Sitting down and just talking while watching telly

It was never just jokes and it was never just silence. You can actually learn a lot about each other, in silence and in the kind of jokes or sarcastic remarks you make. You can also learn whether the children respect you or don’t from the remarks they can make around you. You can also learn what they think of you from the things they are willing to watch around you. Parents these days never understood the value of those times they escaped to watch a steamy moment on The Bold with their parents. That is why they do not put too much stock on the things they are not doing with their own children.

Going to church together

Or the mosque or whatever belief you had. You all had it together so you understood each other. These days; each child has their own church. Their own service. Their own belief. The parents have no belief because they are in bed. You are not even sure when you see your child coming back at one. Are they coming from church or they were never even home to begin with and they just borrowed a change of clothes?

Visiting the grandparents

Each side had a turn. Also there was that holiday where you went without your parents. You had to go light firewood and be in the darkness with candles and go to the river. It was fun though when you dove in the same rivers. Today, children have a right to say no and the parents let it be. Today, the grandparents live in Karen, BuruBuru and Kileleshwa; so the kids have never even see what firewood looks like or even hazard a guess as to how it comes into the compound. You learnt discipline and by the time you came back, you would look at your parents like manna from heaven.


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