The True Us

A cousin has been nicknamed “mother” by her friends because of her caring nature. But surprisingly she is hardly caring towards her immediate family. A granny used to go to lengths to help relatives and the underprivileged. But she often failed to see the pain of her own children. An uncle is very helpful to all relatives and friends. But at times can be ruthlessly rude to his own mother. An aunt who is utmost soft-spoken to everyone outside but is often bitter-tongued to her own family. An uncle who is a very jolly person and makes people smile, but can be extremely bad tempered at home.

Which is a person’s true nature? The side which is displayed to outsiders or the side known at home. Why is it so easy for some to love outsiders rather than your own kin? Or is it much more easier to be unkind in words and actions towards our own family? Or may be we simply take our family for granted.

May be at home, we don’t need to pretend to be a perfect person all the time. There is nothing to hide. People around us knows all about our past and present. They know who we are or where we come from. Several of them know us inside out. So it is easier to be our real self. It is easier to vent out our emotions when we are with people we are close to. Our anger, our frustration and our grief. On the other hand, happiness is something which can be shared with anybody nonchalantly.

When we go out and make new friends and acquaintances, we always try to start with a clean slate. They know nothing of our past or of our shortcomings.We don’t share parts of our lives that we are ashamed of or those we feel will put us in the poor light. We always make a conscious effort to portray ourselves as a wonderful person, all positive, all smiling. We want to be a person that everyone loves and likes to hang around with. Sometimes even our closest friend would not know all about us.

Every one of us likes to be praised, to be remembered with fondness or even adulation. In this quest, we may tend to look outside home. Overlooking the emotional needs our closest family, we may try reach out to the extended one, to friends and even acquaintances with our generosity. But is it okay to do this? And why do we do this? Do we feel that we are not appreciated (or enough) at home, rebuked or humiliated for simple shortcomings, our opinions don’t matter or we are not valued at home? Might be, don’t you think?

So it also becomes important that we appreciate our family members, that we don’t ridicule at their mistakes but help them to correct themselves, consider their feelings while deciding things, make them feel loved with kind words and gestures. Our actions are all inter-connected, don’t we see!

Charity begins at home, they say. Quite apt, I would say. If we are at our best at home, we can be at our best outside rather than the other way round. But easier said than done, isn’t it? I can be extremely patient at work, tolerating irritants and nonsensical colleagues. But with my family (especially my husband and sister), more than often I am capable of losing it. May be because they know that I am not perfect, they know that my conscience is clear. I know I can bare my emotions to them unabashedly without being judged. I am a kind of serious fellow at work. But at home, I laugh and joke hard. On a regular front, I am not really very easygoing and a kind of an introvert.

Sometime before getting married, I had a tiff with my kid sister. In the flow I said something hurtful to her and she was on the verge of tears. I apologized. But the damage was already done. After she recovered from the hurt I had caused, she gave me a very matured advice. She said, “I know you since we were babies. So I know you well, that you don’t really mean the hurtful words you say, that there is nothing negative in your heart. But the people in your marital family don’t know you, they don’t know who you really are or your heart. So please watch your words and your tone”.
The question still remains, which is the true us? I believe when we are in our own skin, we are truly us, with all our shortcomings. And in this self, we are capable of becoming better persons. When we can better our base selves, our extended selves automatically become the best. So yes, charity has to begin at home. Don’t you think?

This post has been featured in BlogAdda’s Spicy Saturday Picks on 30th July, 2016.

3 thoughts on “The True Us

  1. I think people take their own families for granted, but put on their best behaviours for outsiders…what a facade! should be the other way round! What a contemplative post, Natasha! I'm guilty of it too, makes me ponder over it.


  2. We take it for granted that the close ones to us will always love us unconditionally and for always, no matter how we treat them This is where, I guess, we go a bit astray!


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