· We Indians don’t idolise and seek the devil. We rather stay away from Ghosts and other macabre things. After all why would you want to see your child as a zombie with a knife through the head and dripping with blood?
· It’s an American festival? Why are we aping the west blindly?
· Every day I preach about #strangerdanger and now I am asking her to bang on unknown doors?
· Repeatedly I teach about discipline and good behaviour now suddenly I say “Give me a treat or I will mess up your house?”
· Constantly we are encouraging healthy eating habits.. now he will come back with an unhealthy candy stack that I will have to devise ways to hide/ throw away/ ration..
· If you want a costume party just do that .. why call it Halloween?
· Personal peeve.. it always came around Diwali. When we were in the US, I would already be missing the scents of the Indian firecracker scene and lovely mithais and the divinely decorated diyas..As I put up a string of lights in my patio, my neighbours would have a ghoulish graveyard with skulls and cob webs!!
I am sure many of you Indian moms will be on my side. But it is my dear 10 year old who has opened my eyes in my discussion with her last night. I had once again turned down her request to have a Halloween party. She has just done the Bhakti Vedanta and Sufi movement in her class 5 play at her school Shishuvan.
She : “Amma, you are just like those people ïn my drama who stick to their rituals and think everyone else is wrong!!””
Me: “Nonsense..you are just missing your US dress up days. And your Amma is just a scaredy cat. You know I don’t even watch horror movies””
She: “No ma, you don’t like my Draculara doll also. You think anything ugly is bad. We celebrate Christmas in India.. but that’s because its pretty”
Me: “This has got nothing to do with appearance ok?. These witches and zombies have always been associated with black magic and doing evil things. So I don’t like it””
She: “But then aren’t you judging them by their birth..like the caste system in India”
Me: “Oh God Janani.. they aren’t even real!”.. but clearly I was losing this one.
So quickly I said.. “Ok go to bed.. its very late now..””
Then I mulled over this for long and realized I was not practicing what I preach. On one hand, I claim to have an open mind and preach equality and tolerance to other person’s views and customs.. yet my Indian-ness and values which I am always so proud of.. were preventing me from being accepting. I was genuinely being a “racist”. I was also wrong about the Truth about Halloween celebrations. Read more here.
This Halloween, I will learn to be more tolerant and open minded and not be judgmental and divide my child’s world ..just as I would like my kids to grow up to be.