My Republica

Usha Pokharel

The contributor for Republica.

‘New normal’ after COVID-19

Published On: September 26, 2020 12:21 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

What do you consider a normal situation for our country? Were we ever normal as a country?

How to raise creative children

Published On: September 8, 2020 11:25 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

During these long hot summer days staying inside doing nothing is becoming a problem. You cannot go out because there is a curfew. So, to pass the time I started watching different kinds of competitive programs or sports shows on TV. During my watching, I noticed one word that the judges and commentators frequently used. Creativity. It is one of the difficult words to explain without going into detail. So, how do you explain it?

Do you remember it?

Published On: August 24, 2020 10:09 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

During Covid-19 induced curfew, shutdown and lockdown, people have the time to interact, reminiscence, and remember the past, talk about it, and improve family relations. Frequent communication with the family helps keep a person from becoming lonely. Often staying home for long period of time can harm a person. Negative thoughts might overwhelm a person and drive him/her towards depression. I think this impact, to some extent, is under your control, as to which direction you choose to follow. My choice today is to talk about something interesting related to memories and how they work. I am sure everyone has memories labeled, tucked away in some part of their brain, available when they want to access and talk about them. These memories could be anything from their marriage or even having their first house or their first-born child.

Driving away fear from children

Published On: August 8, 2020 12:30 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

In the eyes of a child, the world can be a scary place. Young children are afraid of many things, and parents have a difficult time identifying and addressing them. Reassuring children of their safety is often a challenge too. For that, parents need to understand their children better and also know the reason for their insecurities. Primary school-age children's common fears could be both real and imaginary. It is natural for them to be afraid of things they do not understand or cannot control. Often children are insecure because they are still learning to cope with their feelings, as early as two to three years of age. As children grow, factors that trigger their fear also change.

What makes you a lefty?

Published On: July 25, 2020 02:20 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

This lockdown period is an opportunity for me to spend quality time with my 94-year-old father. We watch old reruns of cricket matches every day. He loves watching cricket, and I am a diehard fan of cricket. One day I was surprised by his comment. He said, ‘there are quite of few lefthanded players these days.”   I had not given it much thought. Yes, I knew it is an advantage to have left-handed batsmen and bowlers in a team. This makes the game more interesting. Around 19 percent of the international cricketers are left-handed batsmen, and 14.48-30.28 percent are left-handed bowlers. Some left-handed batsmen are right-handed bowlers, and some right-handed batsmen are left-handed bowlers.

How kids communicate

Published On: July 6, 2020 07:00 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

I consider this lockdown period as a productive time for me. During this time at home, I have plenty of time during the day to read variety of topics and relate them to my experiences. I spend my evenings talking to my granddaughters in the USA.

Anger management in children

Published On: June 21, 2020 10:41 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

Anger is usually a response to danger. It is also a form of self-expression, and sometimes, a way for children to show their independence. For little children, it is also a cry for help. During the lockdown, schools are closed and children are at home. They are not able to go out and play or interact with their friends. This causes frustration in children, resulting in aggressive behavior. There are plenty of other reasons for young children to be angry about it.

How to save kids from anxiety of pandemic

Published On: May 31, 2020 12:46 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

The world’s attention is currently focused on measures to mitigate the transmission and economic effect of COVID-19 pandemic, and Nepal is no exception. Though the government and health officials are constantly working towards taking the necessary steps to manage the pandemic, reduce transmission and treat those who need medical attention, this pandemic has surely affected our daily life: We are all stressed.  We all have experienced that social media, television, and print media are all covered with news on the pandemic.

Managing sibling rivalry

Published On: May 3, 2020 02:00 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

I can imagine a household full of children, without the option of going out during this current state of lockdown. Schools, colleges, offices and everything else is closed, and everyone is home. I am sure the first few days were very chaotic, till the establishment of routines, and everyone found their corner to play, or to do their stuff. Still, the siblings had some level of rivalry and tensions among them. That’s what siblings are all about.

Chaitra 26, 2046: The date not to forget

Published On: April 18, 2020 02:29 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

Chaitra 26, 2046 (April 8, 1990). If I asked, does the date remind you of something? Most young people will respond with a 'no'. Some older people might remember as something did happen but not exactly sure what it is. It is possible its importance is masked by so many other important incidents that took place in Nepal, since then. For me, it is special.

Talk to children about coronavirus

Published On: April 4, 2020 09:09 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

Everyone is talking about coronavirus. It is now a pandemic, with schools closed, and the country under lockdown. People are wearing masks. Now their household has hand sanitizer bottles. On top, you instructed everyone to wash their hands every half hour. Even the phone company set the phone's caller ring back tone to play information related to coronavirus. Under such circumstances, your children have heard about coronavirus.

Learning during lockdown

Published On: March 28, 2020 11:14 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

Due to the threat of coronavirus pandemic, all academic instructions, including schools, colleges, and universities have been shut down. This presents parents with the challenge of entertaining and educating their children during this forced break. I am sure not all children will be excited at the thought of learning during this time, but that situation is going to change soon. The euphoria of a break will soon wear off, and then children will feel pretty empty because the schools will remain closed for at least a few more weeks. Let us not think about more time than that at the moment.

Social distancing for family socialization

Published On: March 21, 2020 12:42 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

I have been reading newspapers and come across the following headlines: People asked not to make movements outside the home except when it is absolutely essential, gatherings of more than 25 persons at party venues, temples, mosques, monasteries and other public places banned, cinema halls, cultural centers, stadiums, gyms, health clubs, museums, swimming pools, entertainment spaces, dance bars and clubs to remain shut till April 30, regular classes and examinations of academic institutions suspended till April 12.

Why you must have adequate sleep

Published On: March 15, 2020 09:33 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

I sometimes stay up past bedtime to watch a cricket match.  Recently I was watching one, and there was a promotional advertisement.    The punch line of the commercial, during Champion’s League football match, was sonamanahhai, you can’t sleep.  The message jolted me back to reality, and I suddenly realized it was way past my bedtime. I shut the TV and went to sleep, assuring myself I could always catch the highlight of the game the next day on TV.

Your baby’s first year

Published On: February 29, 2020 10:08 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

Now that you have finally survived long days of pregnancy, and painful childbirth, you are officially parents.  You find out, your baby has already received the first dose of vaccine. Babies typically receive the first dose of the Hepatitis b vaccine at birth. Congratulation, you are now ready to experience your baby’s eventful first year.   Be prepared to face the challenge of sleepless nights, diaper changing, and regulating feeding times.

Dealing with children with learning disability

Published On: February 16, 2020 11:44 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

A few years ago, during an interaction with school children, I noticed a few children behaving differently. I thought they were just shy, but there was one hyperactive child.  I asked the teacher’s permission to interact closely with the child.  I suspected learning disabilities in the child. Initially, they were reluctant to acknowledge it, but later, they agreed with me. This is just one example.

Train of thoughts

Published On: February 1, 2020 10:05 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

The morning started as usual, but by the time I finished my first cup of tea, it turned out to be rather interesting. As I was surfing through the news portals, I came across a report that Apple would soon come up with a single device to charge all its products.  The news was all about wireless charging. Upon sharing this news with my family, the conversation automatically diverted to a discussion on the advancement of science through the years.  This reminded me of my conversation with my eldest son some years ago.  I remember him telling me about one of his friends’ success with the wireless charging technology.

Crossing the divide

Published On: January 18, 2020 08:25 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

In this era of ‘me too’ and ‘acid attacks’, we are hearing more men and boys making the same type of mistakes again and again.  Under such circumstances, I think it is time we asked ourselves: Where did we go wrong while raising our boys? Are we still influenced by our patriarchal society’s male preference? Frankly speaking, I don’t have the answers to these questions, but male preference is gradually decreasing.

Raising confident children

Published On: January 4, 2020 01:57 PM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

If parents take failure positively and encourage their children to keep trying, then their children will learn valuable life skills of not giving up

Pregnancy from man’s perspective

Published On: December 21, 2019 08:52 AM NPT By: Usha Pokharel

My readers might be thinking, ‘why am I talking about this topic?’ The other day I was talking to some young parents about their experience of dealing with pregnancy. I was surprised to find out that most of them had played no role during their wife’s pregnancy. They had their parents and other extended family helping out during the whole period and of course after the child was born. Although they showed ‘I don’t care’ attitude, I am pretty sure they were equally excited. It’s just in our culture men feel awkward showing their emotions in public. After all, they are men and emotions are for the weaker being like a woman.