I am not good with kids. Trust me when I say it. I have this amazing ability to make even the brightest of babies cry but my simple “baby talk” gestures. At a naming ceremony of my sister’s baby, I was proud that I had become the new aunt. The Proud peacock (yeah, that’s me) strutted around the room gleaming with joy. It was customary time for me to say the baby name in his ears three times.

I went near his ear and called out softly “Rahul”. You won’t believe me when I say that he looked up at me with a fiery gaze and let out this loud cry, bawling his heart out. I didn’t know whether it was my face, or the call or my stance. Tears were freely flowing by his cheeks. My sister quickly came and scooped him in her hands and shushed him. With his face, hanging over her shoulders, Rahul looked at me with mockery which only I could feel. My face had gone red with embarrassment and the laughter in the room was still ringing in my ears. Well you should know that I did complete calling his name amidst the ruckus that he created every time I went near him.

This other time, one of my aunts invited for her grand daughter’s naming ceremony. When the ritualistic time came, I told my aunt that I had a bad cold and that the baby could catch it. As I passed by the crib, I am sure the girl gave me thumbs down sign and put out her tongue mocking me. Well you could say I am imagining things, but only I know what I went through.

There was this, “bring your child to work” day organized by my company. My colleague’s 8 year old son had come along to meet us before heading out for lunch. I had this big project meeting planned and had my papers strewn all over the desk. Just as Jitin came in he waved a big hi to me and smiled. I thought my rotten lady luck is not smiling on me today and went ahead talking to him. Just as he was about to leave, he flipped through this big yellow binder that I had kept for reading out the report at the meeting. When he started to leave, I ran after him asking for the binder.

“Darling, could you please give it to me? Aunty has this big meeting coming up!” (Don’t even talk about the ways I talk to a kid)

“No!”, he crossed the binder across his chest. That can’t be good isn’t it?

“Darling please, take this marker instead, you can draw pictures on my whiteboard. I will show you how to draw a big bird??!” (Oh boy, talk about negotiating skills I learnt)

“No” he said looking squarely in my eye.

“Jitin beta, give aunty the file, you are a good boy right?” Janvi stepped in much to my relief.

“No, No No” he shouted running off with the file.

“Jitin, come back” I shouted back trying to catch up with the boy. I was very close to blowing my top. My lady luck would be very happy seeing my situation.

Janvi who shouted after Jitin, gave a stern warning. He stopped and came back. Janvi gave him a pat on the back and plucked that file from his hands and gave it to me. Jitin started to cry and shouted “I hate you!” as he was dragged towards the door. Janvi mouthed a sorry as she went. I could only give a weak smile. My jinx continues!!

Raj stepped in to my cubicle and said “Hey lady, I am having a birthday party for my two year old daughter this saturday. I would be very happy if you could come.” Just then, thunder clapped outside and it started to rain. Talk about bad omen. Three cubicles away someone shouted in to the phone,

You dare not come!!”

“You know what Raj, I am going to be out of station. Sorry yaar, probably I can meet her later some day.” From my boss’s cubicle I could hear a sentence “Never gonna happen”.

Did I say I am not good with kids?