Poem – ASIFA

This poem written by someone articulates all the emotions raging within us so well!

You froze the ink in my pen Asifa,
you made my blood run cold
your face, your eyes, a question, Asifa,
these wounds, both new and old

I stare at his face, a regular man
he too was once a child,
what sickness came upon his brain,
this madness, rage run wild,

Does evil find the hollow hearts of men
and to fell it, he must die?
What hate, what lust, what drove him there?
does it live in you and i?

This shame, this anger,
this sharing of grief,
will we keep this moment alive,
will her death, her pain,
her life, her name,
remind us, always of why-

Of why there is scant meaning,
in gods or texts or lands,
in leaders and their platitudes
in our outstretched, praying hands

If we in all our wisdom,
in this land where religion thrives,
cannot protect our weakest,
their innocence and their lives,
what use then are our idols,
what use our holy books
why visit temples, churches,
go to mosques, our praying nooks,

Instead, let’s look at our mirrored eyes,
for the humanity that we seek,
for the protectors of the voiceless,
for the voices of the weak,

Let’s change our songs of them and us,
and create instead a life,
where our thoughts, our words and actions,
build a world removed from strife,

Where an eight year old Asifa
can roam her meadows free,
her horses grazing beside her,
in the shade of a summer tree

And the world is a gentler, kinder place
because we’ve chosen to make it so,
and a mother doesn’t cling to a little dress,
for her little girl who’s no more.

A STORY OF LADY

I was married, had been with my wife for 15 years. Then I left her 2 months short of our 10 year wedding anniversary.

We were parents to two beautiful children, who are in their late teens now, but were only seven and nine years old when I walked out.

I travelled for work, stayed in a different hotel at least three nights a week. That’s how I met Eve*.

We got to know each other over time. We became Facebook friends. We sent messages to each other all day and night. She was also married, also had two kids. We had so much in common, we soon fell in love. I felt like she ‘got’ me.

This was all during a very trying time in my marriage. I wasn’t happy, I didn’t look forward to going home. My wife had put on weight, we hardly ever spoke, she always looked so miserable.

Little did I realise that I was the reason she was so down and depressed. I didn’t pay her any attention. I took her for granted. I was too busy wishing my life was more exciting, being romanced online, spending all of my free time thinking how I could get out.

I believed she didn’t love me. I convinced myself she never cared about me or my needs and wants and wishes, that all I was was a paycheck.

She spent her free time taking care of us — our kids, making our suppers, doing out washing, making lunches, doing homework, projects, shuttling kids to sport, taking care of the pets they loved so much, their friends, and had a job of her own on top of it all.

Every time she spoke to me, all I heard was nagging and whining. But she was actually begging for my attention: a weekend away, a date night, a movie — everything I ended up doing with Eve behind her back and after I left my family.

We argued and fought because we felt unheard by the other. And yet that was all we actually had to do – LISTEN – to each other!

I moved to another province with Eve. My now ex-wife got custody of our kids. I saw them every second weekend, the usual ‘Dad’ set up.

New beginnings

Life was sweet!

Eve and I had an amazing sex life. A connection I believed I never had with my ex. We had a large circle of friends. My family loved her. My kids liked her.

But my ex could never bring herself to meet Eve – she felt betrayed. I hated her even more! She was childish. She was mean. She never cared about me or my happiness. I didn’t care about my ex’s feelings when I posted photos of us on Facebook… I had Eve and a whole new life and it was fantastic!

We were together for about six or seven years but never married – we believed marriage was not our thing.

I believed that after 15 years with my ex, we’d given it all we could and our time together was up, there was nothing we could do to salvage our relationship or marriage. Eve was my future, Eve was who I should have been with all along.

Eventually, no matter how well we got along in the beginning; no matter how well I thought she “got” me; no matter how good the sex was; the “honeymoon” came to an end.

Eve and I started snapping at each other. Little fights here and there. I had a moment of pure realisation one night, at about 2am.

I realised that I missed the woman who created my first home and family. I realised that if I’d treated my ex-wife the way I’d treated Eve, used the hours I spend woo-ing Eve on my ex, she’d have bloomed.

If I’d stopped being negative about her and our relationship to my family and friends they wouldn’t have been so negative to her and she wouldn’t have pulled into herself and shied away.

She became someone I convinced myself I no longer knew or got along with because I never gave her the time and affection and attention she craved and deserved.

I thought I had, but when I got down and really thought about it I never really did. I never really let her in. I had ended my marriage years before with the simple decision that she was no longer who or what I wanted. And I’d convinced my family and friends the same – that she was no good for me!

Regret sets in

But I was wrong. I missed the best years of my kids lives. Missed being a family with them. I let their mother battle with raising them alone. Yes I helped financially, but a man living outside his family has no real idea what the costs are on the single mother. While Eve and I ate steaks on the weekends, my ex-wife was living on egg and toast.

And do you know that she never complained? She never demanded more money out of me. She never stopped me from seeing the kids. Never said no if I changed plans on her at the last minute. She gave up her weekends so that my mother could spend time with her grandchildren. She left me to get on with my life with Eve, even though it must have killed her.

Like any relationship, it had started out good – great in fact – but when it go bad I decided to leave… I walked out and divorced a woman who – and I can only see this now – would have done anything for me. But I’d told myself she wouldn’t or couldn’t.

My ex-wife stayed single for 8 years. She dated but never got involved. Her being single was also a kind of affirmation for me – that no one wanted her – that everything I’d decided she lacked, so did other men… She actually stayed single to focus on our children.

Too late

And then came the day she met Craig. I never thought it would bug me in any way if she got a boyfriend. I thought it would be great! But I was very wrong. I felt hurt. I felt jealous. I even felt angry and maybe betrayed.

She moved in with Craig, along with my kids. She set up a new home. A new family, with my kids… it was a very bitter pill to swallow.

I finally understood how she’d felt all these years. And it felt rotten.

I watched via Facebook and through conversations with our old mutual friends how Craig spoiled her and the kids. Their weekends were spent on the beach – he surfed with my son. They went hiking in the Burg. They went to Mauritius where he proposed on a kayak and she said yes — they got married.

My daughter was a bridesmaid. My son was a groomsman. Craig’s parents and brother welcomed my ex-wife and children into their family. They told everyone how blessed they were to be gaining them as family.

She glowed with happiness. She radiated love and none of it was for me! My heart felt like it had been ripped out.

It should have been me.

Don’t be me. You think you will never be happy when you are in a rut. It is when you are there at your darkest that you need to grip down and try your hardest.

Today I live alone and still only see my kids occasionally. They are big now and harbour anger towards me for leaving them and their mother. Who can blame them?

Of all the things Eve was, she was never the mother of my children – my original true love.”

“HOPE this helps a few marriages, Love and appreciate a Good woman”.

Work on computer for long hours? You may have CVS

Work on computer for long hours? You may have CVS

Computer professionals often face a number of eyesight issues due to excessive usage of the computer, tablet and mobile phones. The prolonged usage of the display can lead to blurry vision. This condition is known as Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS).

A recent study by Bank of American shows that a number of computer professionals around the world suffer from CSV. The survey result suggests that most computer professionals turn on their cell phone right from the moment they wake up. The use of computer, tablet or smartphone goes on until the time they are off to the bed.

The increased interaction with the digital screen leads to CVS. The condition directly impacts the eyesight and often lead to a number of vision-related problems. The prolonged use of a computer, tablet, mobile phone and even e-reader causes these vision-related problems. Quite surprisingly, most professionals are not even aware of the fact that they are suffering from CVS.

Victims of this ailment complain of blurred vision, headache, tech pain and dry eyes. Ophthalmic surgeons come across a number of cases suffering from CVS. While it is not entirely possible to boycott the use of gadgets, taking breaks at equal intervals can help in maintaining healthy eyesight. Dr. Gowri Kulkarni, the head of operations at DocsApp suggests following tips to avoid CVS.

20-20-20 rule

The rule is basically taking a 20-seconds break in every 20-minutes. You need to focus your eyes on an object at least 20 feet away during this 20-seconds breaks. The 20-20-20 rule is most effective in reducing eye strain and even keeping you active throughout the day.

Exercise your eyes

Increased exposure to the computer screen and mobile phone leads to irritation and blurry vision. A lot of people experience irritation or blurred vision. You can practice a few simple exercises like eye rolling, repeated blinking and focusing on a distant object to help the strained eyes.

Adjust screen settings

If your laptop and desktop display is causing eye strain, you can adjust the screen brightness, contrast, and font size. You can calibrate the settings to find what suits you the best.

Good lighting

It is essential to abbe good lighting at your workplace to avoid visual strain. It is important to prevent glare, shadow, and reflection caused by external sources of light. Make sure that your workplace has adequate light but at the same time, it’s not too bright. Use blinds to prevent glare or get a glare screen.

 

 

 

How to Prevent Your Kids from Becoming Spoiled

How to Prevent Your Kids from Becoming Spoiled

Raising children is not an easy task, because different things, small and large, can affect them and shape the people they will become. It is only natural that as parents, we sometimes make mistakes that eventually enable us to learn how to act in the future, but unfortunately, some of these mistakes can have far-reaching effects and make our children spoiled, both as toddlers and as adults. In order not to fall into the parental traps that make our children spoiled, it’s important to identify problematic behavior in children and cut it out at the root.

These are the 8 things that make children spoiled that you have to stop doing now to prevent them from becoming spoiled adults!

  1. You explain things to your children too much

When you give your children reasons and explanations for what you ask of them, they mimic this behavior and do exactly as you do. Sentences like “If you don’t clean up your room you won’t find anything in the mess,” make children think they a reason is needed for everything and they’ll come back at you in the same currency with questions like “Why do I have to clean my room, it’s just going to get messy again anyway? This mechanism of question-answer-reason will cause each parent to become confused, flustered, eventually succumb to the child’s will, which as a result will make them think they need a reason for everything they are asked to do. By winning the arguments and getting what they want, the child will become spoiled.

What’s the solution?

In order to solve the problem of argumentation, you must be assertive and make your child understand that there are certain things that need to be done even if we don’t want to do them, like cleaning the room. Give them clear instructions, without negotiating such as, “You have to clean your room before you watch TV.” To make it easier to stand up for yourself, adopt general phrases that you can use in a variety of areas, such as “In this family, everyone needs to clean their room” so that the child understands that there are clear rules and you don’t have to give a reason for everything.

  1. You buy too many things for your children

A clear sign for overly spoiled children is a demand for things they “can’t live without.” This happens when children “pester” us about something they want from a certain store, and we give in to them because it is simpler than starting an argument. If your child starts throwing a tantrum and you give in to it, they learn that all they have to do to get what they want is to make a little fuss. Another factor of raising spoiled kids is the fact that sometimes we buy things for our children to make them happy, and when it becomes a habit they don’t appreciate it as much as they did in the past. It also robs them of the joy of waiting for something that will take them time to receive and the joy they feel when getting a unique gift.

What’s the solution?

If you are going to shop with your kids, prepare them in advance for the purpose of the trip, saying for example: “We’re going to the toy store to buy a gift for your cousin.” If your children make a fuss, ignore them and continue with your plan. It is important to make it clear to them that they will receive gifts on special occasions and not whenever they feel like a new toy. So if, for example, they ask you to buy them a specific toy, tell them, “We can add it to your birthday wish list.” In addition, try to provide your children with positive experiences that are not related to physical objects, such as joint activities inside and outside the home, so that they don’t depend on material things to make them happy.

  1. You give your children too much attention

Sometimes, in trying to make our children feel special, we make them feel like they’re the only person in the room and all the attention should be directed at them. If your child tries to attract your attention in any situation and you give into them, such as during a conversation with another parent in the playground, for example, it may be problematic and make them spoiled. It is important to make children feel special and loved, but we can’t always be so readily attentive towards them, doing so will eventually cause them to think that the focus should always be on them. “It’s never too early to tell your child, ‘You’re very important, but we’re all important,'” says Dr. Sal Severe, a school psychologist.

What’s the solution?

In addition to explaining the importance of other people, it is important that you don’t give your children too much individual attention. Explain to them situations where they shouldn’t disturb you such as, “When you see that I’m on the phone, do not interrupt me,” and when they can say what they’d like, “I’ll talk to you as soon as I finish the conversation.” In the meantime, think about what you want to do after I finish.” Look for opportunities to show them that other people are also important; “I’m sure what you have to say is very interesting but now we want to hear about Grandma’s trip.”

  1. You are helping your children too much

“Mom, I’m thirsty! Bring me water!” This is a sentence that many parents are familiar with, and although there are times when our children actually do need help, you don’t have to rush to them every time they ask for something. The reason they do this is that they’ve gotten used to you helping them with every little thing, even at an age when they can already do things on their own. Many times this happens to parents unconsciously, so it’s important to be alert to this behavior and learn to let your children do things themselves once they are able to, otherwise they can become lazy, unmotivated adults.

What’s the solution?

“The only way to deal with feelings of frustration is to experience them,” says Prof. Dan Kindlon, a psychologist at Harvard University, “so stand by and let your child deal with the waiting.” Tell them, “I’m busy now, but I’ll help you after I finish cleaning the kitchen.” When you do this, emphasize to your child that he or she can do what they want on their own with sentences like “I’m sure a big boy like you who goes down the slide alone can also butter his own toast.” When you do this, your children will understand that there are things they can handle on their own and thus they can become independent adults with the ability to cope with challenges.

  1. You let inconsiderate behavior slide

“They’re just kids” is a sentence spoken by many parents, but these three words can have a negative and far-reaching effect that can make them spoiled and inconsiderate. There is indeed a stage in infancy that children are not yet aware of their environment, but when they learn to speak and communicate, it is important to make them understand that their words have an effect on others’ feelings. Don’t forgive them for phrases such as “But I wanted a Barbie!” When they get clothing as a birthday gift, for example.

What’s the solution?

It is not enough to say “that’s rude,” since it is important that you make your child understand how other people feel. Teach them to put themselves in the other’s shoes: “How do you think you would feel if you spent all afternoon preparing a gift for your aunt only for her to say ‘That’s not what I wanted!’?”. Make them clarify their position in a dignified and pleasant way so that they learn to be thoughtful people. For example, instead of saying “I didn’t want pasta for dinner!” They’ll say sentences like “Thank you for making pasta, but that’s not my favorite food anymore. Can we make chicken nuggets sometime?”

  1. You don’t teach your children to share

“That’s mine!” Is a sentence spoken by quite a few children, and there is a biological reason for this; If your children refuse to share toys or hits others who try to take them, it’s because of uncontrollable impulses that make them express their feelings physically and not verbally. This becomes a problem when they continue this behavior over time and refuse to share their stuff on the playground, for example. If you forgive your children for such behavior and don’t teach them to share, they’ll just become more and more spoiled with time and refuse to share their things even when they are older.

What’s the solution?

First, it is important to understand that the reluctance to share is natural and will pass over time provided you teach your child how to do it. If your child has one favorite toy and is afraid to share it when a friend whose expected to come over, don’t force them to share that toy- instead, help them put it away and take out other toys. When your child refuses to share toys that are not their own, on the playground, for example, intervene and tell them that others should also be allowed to enjoy the toys and make sure they actually share. The child may be slightly angry, but it will pass and they’ll learn to share and not feel that everything belongs exclusively to them.

  1. You entertain your children every time they demand it

Children enjoy playing different games and taking part in activities that are appropriate for their age, and it is

nice to do so with them, but if you overdo it, you’ll become the main source of entertainment for them. It will make them spoiled and demand your time whenever they feel a bit bored.

What’s the solution?

It is important that you instill in your children the fact that they can be alone and entertain themselves even if you aren’t around them. Tell them that they are playing nicely on their own and make it clear to them that you

can’t always play with them and that they can manage by themselves. Set aside a regular time to engage in

activities with your children, and at the same time allow them to entertain themselves so that they learn to do it alone without the need for a parent around.

​​8. You try to make your children happy at all times

Life is not a bed of roses as we are well aware of as adults, but most of us want our children to be happy all the time. It is an unpleasant fact of life, but it is important that you understand that your children can’t be happy every second of the day, and if you try to protect them from this truth they will become spoiled and think they deserve to be happy at all times.

What’s the solution?

Making your children understand that life is difficult is one of the greatest challenges but at the same time one

of the most important in their development. In order for our children to integrate into society and cope successfully with life as adults, it is important to let them experience the difficulties that life poses. If, for example, there is a child in the kindergarten who has hurt your child’s feelings, let them process these feelings and be a sympathetic ear instead of separating them from the offending child. Explain to them in a way that they can understand that there are negative things that happen to us and must be dealt with. For example, tell them that just as a bruised knee from a fall eventually heals, so will their feelings. Emphasize that difficulties are something that needs to be dealt with and not avoided because doing so is impossible.

Parenting brings with it new challenges every day, but it is important to be consistent and not let important matters slide, for you and your children. Following these rules and tips will guarantee your children grow up to be well-rounded, and certainly not spoiled, adults!