This Sunday, we went to watch Neeraja. I was okay taking my ten year old daughter but was not sure if I should take my 6 year old son. What if he got too scared of flying? The last time I took my 9 year old to see Everest, she had clearly not felt inspired to trek ..she was clear she was never going anywhere where nature was so much more in control of her fate!! But my husband insisted it would be a life lesson for him as well.
As so we all went in to watch the story of a an incredibly composed, clear thinking and courageous woman. As expected , my son started crying ..a lot when the first passenger was shot..then saw a lot of sorrow, fear and angst in his eyes as the situation grew worse.. the loud threatening voices, the helplessness of the passengers, children on board who he probably identified with more..I was left wiping his face every few minutes, as he gripped on to my right hand. My daughter the 10 year old, anyway the emotional one, was too shocked even to cry that much.. she also sat clenching my other hand..
As the movie ended, the caramel popcorn sat untouched and we walked out…as expected my son first said, “ I will never go in a plane again.. what if it was hijacked?”..
We moved on to the restaurant and then poured out the learnings..
“So what did you learn from the movie?”..my hubby asks the kids..
“That we should not go in the plane”..my son repeats
“But isn’t her courage amazing? How was she different from the others?
My 6-year old’s learnings:
“She was also very scared and crying.. But she kept on trying to help others and take care of them”
“She was very kind. She took care of that crying Dadi and the kids”
“She also spoke nicely to the terrorist..so you should be polite”:)
“That we should always be calm and brave even in a bad situation..even if we are going to die.” Bingo!
My 10-year old’s learnings:
“Her brain did not freeze. She was scared but calm kind of”
“She kept listening to their plans.. so she could do something to stop them. Kept planning something”
“She could have escaped. She opened the door first. Yet she died …That is not fair”
“I remember that book Survior you gave me. Even there it says you should be ready and alert. Some people did not run out quickly even when the door was opened.”
“They should make some new technology to open the doors or put smoke or water or something along with the pilots escaping, to help the people escape also”
And a mom’s learnings:
I just couldn’t help thinking how many times I have hustled my kids and hubby through the door, “Go quick.. you will miss the bus.” may be yelled a quick “Bye darling”…but that last scene.. a hug..I vowed to give my hubby and kids that one tight squeeze every day as they stepped out of the door.
A huge salute to this barely 23-year old who truly understood the meaning of doing the right thing and had the courage to do it in such extreme circumstances.
Indeed, Babu moshai, zindagi badi honi chahiye, lambi nahi!