“through the act of living, the discovery of oneself is made concurrently with the discovery of the world around us. . ."

Thursday, February 23, 2012


A father is like a farmer; he sows his seed into mother earth, nurtures the offshoot carefully, nourishing, watering, pruning and feeding and giving him light and space to grow. Like a farmer, a father's greatest joy is to watch his offspring grow strong and healthy and independant and then to see him sow his own seed in turn. In every living being, there is this instinctive need to propagate its seed, ensuring the survival of its genes. That is immortality. You live in your descendants. No monument is equal to that. When Ousu's mother tell him that he is her dream, it is as simple as a biological need to ensure the survival of her genes. That is the story of the living world since life began on earth.


I have followed K's growth diligently, from a newborn baby till now to adulthood. It is to my immense satisfaction that I have done the best I could to ensure that he enters adulthood as, if nothing else, a decent, sensitive and sensible Human being. I guided him; never pushed or cajoled him, but gently shown him how to chose his path, his future. I might have influenced him but never forced my will or wishes upon him.


Yesterday  he attended an interview for selection to BA (Hons) in Psychology. He had been quite worked up about it because there were 100 + applicants for the 40 seats. Whereas for most of his classmates, a degree in Psychology is a stepping stone towards their MBA or Masters in HR or Civil Services, for K, it is pure practice of Psychology. In the inital survey of the field he had chosen, he had looked at Clinical Psychology or Palliative care, or care of disabled children but now has focussed onto Criminology. K says he is fascinated about the dark side of the moon.

I had advised him to be aware of his subject enough to project his genuineness, to impress them with his earnestness. I told him - be true.

After the interview, he called me and said that it went well. Fortunately for him, the panel members were teachers who knew him. In the excitement of the opportunity to tell someone what he wanted do, K seems to have forgotten my advice to be 'delibrate' in answering questions. He, like me, let passion take over reason.

I remember the day when K, studying in 9th std, was discussing some problems of his friends. We used to have that evening session almost everyday, when around evening tea, the three of us would discuss our day. K said- 'Acha, I am kind of an ex-officio Counseller of my class. Guys come and talk to me about their problems and I listen and they seem to accept my suggestions'. By the end of 10th std, we had narrowed down his future course/career to Psychology. It was by what I call, the 'Reverse Selection Process' by which you don't select what you want; instead you delete what you don't want to be. Banking, wildlife biology, veterinary, soldiering, business, engineering, movies - all went to the trash bin. We tentatively decided on Psychiatry, for which you have to study medicine. But in the 12th std, K told me that he knew he didn't have it in him to slog for years at medicine and therefore he would chose Psychology instead. I helped him in choosing the institution; both P and I were in agreement with him that he should pursue his graduate studies outside Kerala. We considered the institutions and finally narrowed it down to Christ University, Bangalore.

Tomorrow is the day when results will be announced of his interview. I sure hope he gets through.

******** Balachandran V, Alappuzha. 23.02.2012.


  1. mr B - you should be one awesome dad...but then that should be natural, for the blogs portray an awesome MAN..

    K sure would make it..christ university is a great choice for all i know..but it is another mallu land, just outside of kerala..that is what i have felt..taking nothing away from the college..too much of mallus in the staff and the students.. ((i aint saying it is bad,nor taking anything away from the choice..just surprised by your choice, because you said graduate studies outside kerala..and i feel you must have made the choice for a greater experience for K of the people in India..))

    about the blog, my words fall short to fantabulous..made my mind feel tweaked with the knowledge of little time I give my dad..the evening sessions over tea, i miss my childhood..

    Reverse selection process, i loved it..with the choices people have, we often chose reversely..eliminating the not so good we don't need..

  2. I get confused looking at these pics you have of the two of you. Who is the clone?

    The eternal worry and anxiety any father has , have also possessed you.

    And it is not even a remote possibility that such a boy as he, and brought up in the atmosphere you and P have nurtured,would stumble.

  3. You must be a fantastic dad for you say you never forced him but influenced him. I tell you Balan, grown ups dont have that maturity as you showcase. Lucky son!

  4. You are a great dad Balan and you will see that in K very soon.Good luck ,father and son .

  5. K's life in years to come will speak for your fathering.
    Cheers for K !

  6. @Ousu, Anil, Insignia, Kavita & Melange: Thanks for the kind words, fellas! And yes, K got through - He is now an Honours student! :-)

  7. @Ousu: We had considered Fergu, Pune also. But from what we learned from the magazine surveys and internet and word-of-mouth, we assumed Christ to be the best choice. And of course, we didn't want him to be too far away - at least now! :-)

    And Ousu, do give time for your parents; you will always cherish it later - much later...

  8. Hope he did get through.

    You spoke my mind. I had decided that my son (now 3 years old) will decide what he wants to study, but I shall decide where to study.

  9. Great father and Great son!
    All the best!

  10. I liked your comparison of a father to a farmer; I'd never thought in those lines.

    Wishing the best for K - which in turn is for you!

  11. Your story is so much like the planting of the farmer as you illustrated. You wrote a beautiful reality of what fatherhood is all about. I am looking fwd to learning of his answer for his chosen choice of schools.I feel sure it will be a good report......Touching, Bala

  12. @Everyone: K got through, as mentioned in my next post. This means that he will be studying only Psychology in his last two sems; it is actually the next phase in focusing onto his specialization,which at present is, Criminology.

    I wrote this not to impress you how great a father I am, but to share the fact that even for an ordinary person like me, there are means and methods of, I believe, charting out the course of life for my son. What will be the future depends on many factors, but for the time being, things look OK.

    In these modern days, the relationship between parents and children leaves much to be desired. Each of us try to force down our egos and wishes on the other, forgetting the goal,which is to achieve a semblance of a stable and positive life - for all those concerned. I am not trying to 'showcase' anything, but if my experiences are useful in drawing up your lives and those of your children, my objective is achieved.


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