Instead, she has always tried to make me understand WHY I would be better off doing so. So if I didn't like one way of doing things, she suggested another way.
For example, I don't like flans. My mum has never tried to make me eat it.
In nursery school, a teacher told me to eat a flan because everyone else was eating it. She forbade me to go out to play until I finished it.
As a result, I hated flans even more.
My mum always said, if you don't wanna eat a flan, you don't have to eat. There're lots of snacks to eat it. Why does it have to be a pudding? Because you need eggs to grow? Isn't there any other way to eat eggs?
One day, my uncle gave me a cool imported notebook. The paper was yellow and there was a cool cartoon character printed on it.
I was excited to use it at my primary school, but the teacher told me not to use it.
I asked why. She didn't answer immediately and told me to wait for her to double check about it. "Double check about what???" I didn't understand at all what was happening.
Her double-checked answer was this:
"The yellow paper is too vivid for your eyes. You have to stop using this or you'll have trouble with your eyesight."
I couldn't even say "OH, COME ON!!!!"
I was like, 8 years old. Still I knew that was not the real reason. It was because they didn't know how to deal with something 'different'. Everyone else was using the same, white notebook. That's stupid, but they just couldn't handle the situation.
“Raise your hand if you have shoplifted before."
I haven’t. So I didn’t raise my hand.
After that, the teacher told us to open our eyes and talked about how bad stealing is.
Then he said,
“Raise your hand if you promise you’ll never ever steal anythings!"
Everyone raised their hand saying “Yes!” except me.
They asked why I didn’t promise like everybody else did.
It was almost like they were blaming me.
I tried to explain it like this,
“Because… nobody knows the future.
You could feel rough, lonely or be poor, weak, or hate people at some point.
And at that time, probably the people here won't be with you. Nor would the teacher be.
How can you be sure that you'll always do the right thing?
I’m not telling you that stealing is okay.
You all should know you could lose to your devil someday.
Being aware of that helps you at a time like that rather than making this meaningless oath."
I meant something like that, but my explanation wasn’t good enough. I was only 11 years old.
They didn’t understand it.
From those experiences, I've learnt that what I say makes sense to only about 3 people out of 100. Or less.
I travel and meet people.
I’ve met so many different kinds of people.
I don’t believe I can get along with everybody I meet.
That’s why I really appreciate it when people I meet treat me as one individual person, with respect.
I respect them as well and thank Goddess that they brought that special encounter.
And I thank my mum who educated me like that.