This blog post has been contributed by Aditi Dutta.
As long as I was a student, I eagerly looked forward to the long summer vacations. I do remember the project work and homework we had to do, but still, it was the longest and the most enjoyable break. A respite from the monotony of routine life, from school, daily homework and the dreaded weekly class tests. When I started working, I missed it and even fantasized about a six-week long summer vacation for office goers. However, now that I am a mother to school going children, I am not really looking forward to it. To be honest, I am dreading the thought of having my children at home all day. Sometimes, I wonder how I will engage them through the day. I hate the thought of losing my slice of peaceful time.
With just a few days to go before the schools close, I notice the plethora of advertisements for summer camps that arrive with the newspapers every morning, but somehow I have not found any of them to be enticing enough. A part of me also wants my kids to enjoy the fun I had as a child. The pleasure of not having any routine, of not having to wake up early, take a bath and leave home after a hurried breakfast. What if I just let them be, let them have the power of choosing whatever they want to do, whenever and for however long? After all, lately everybody has been talking about ‘my choice’, then why not the kids?
After much deliberation, I finally decided not to send my kids to any summer camp and to let them enjoy themselves at home, with me. I hope to engage them in one exciting activity every day, such as fireless cooking (maybe make some delicacies using mangoes), get messy with finger painting, art and craft activities, engage in book reading/ storytelling, visit a museum or two, splash around in the pool, go for fun playdates, watch some kids movies and surely go for a trip during the summer holidays. I know there will be times they may feel bored and end up watching more hours of TV than usual or I may feel driven up the wall, but I have decided to take it easy, let my kids be kids and let myself be human (not an imaginary supermom).