Sunday, January 30, 2011

Living my second childhood

I've been wanting to talk about this topic for a while, and since I've only got 1 blog post for this month I thought it would be a nice closure to talk about it, before we hit February. Once again, a very low post count month. I blame the tight working schedule and the start of the new semester. I just spent Saturday & Sunday falling sick and working on 2 online modules. Well, the good thing about online lectures is that I can turn the lecturer off when he gets boring. Yay.

Anyway, back to topic. Many people (including myself) feel that I'm still a big kid at heart. I still collect toys and figures, watch Super Sentai and Kamen Rider, the occasional anime, build Gundams, read manga, and play lots of video games. Some how I live by one of my favourite quotes of all time: "You don't stop playing because you grow old. You grow old because you stop playing." Some how, I've never really progressed out of that stage. The stage where I was fascinated Japanese mecha, masked heroes in spandex, or transforming trucks and exploding ninjutsu. All these kept me mesmerised through both my childhood and adulthood. These feelings never fade, and has remained close to my heart even as I venture into parenthood.

And contrary to my initial beliefs, parenthood actually gave me a chance to relive my days as a young boy. Not from the views of a baby or toddler, but from the perspective of a father. Teaching elementary topics such as numbers and alphabets to Rena something made me remember things that I've never knew I experienced. Memories of my own would flood me as I do things together with Rena. Memories of me and my own parents, doing the same thing 30 years ago. Sure the ages and situations are different, but it's surprising how little trivial things can trigger memories from such a long time ago. And these are important, important memories.

It seems like I'm going through the whole process of learning ABCs too, only this time I'm the one imparting the knowledge and handing over what I've learned to the next generation. They say the best form of learning is to teach, and it's amazing how much of an experience it can be, just by trying to impart something as simple as the alphabets. I was watching clips from Sesame Street on youtube with Rena, and it struck me how we are connected through our attraction to common characters such as Big Bird and Elmo, although we're one generation apart. The characters which I loved so long ago, are the very same ones Rena loves now.

Even building simple Lego bricks brought the memories flooding. It was a personal fave, and while Rena prefers the more high tech toys these days, she still spends a fair amount of time on building her own creations, just like her old dad did decades ago. My conclusion and regret is that there wasn't any iPhone or iPad 30 years ago.

I can keep going, but I don't want to be a nag. To conclude, I just want to say that parenthood to me is an essential part of life. It brings us to the next chapter, and completes the overall experience that one should receive out of life. I'm not saying you should share my view, but that's how I look at it personally. To me, it gives me a chance to re-live my past, and a second chance to do what I didn't get to accomplish the first time. Sure I didn't get to fulfil some of my childhood dreams. But who's to say Rena can't share and do it with me this time? :)