A candid Ajay Devgn reveals how his kids show him a new perspective on life
It’s a tall order to pin down Ajay Devgn for an interview, forget getting him to talk about his personal life, especially when he’s neck-deep in post-production work for his next, Shivaay, a film he’s also directing and acting in. But while he may not flaunt his love for his daughter and son (13-year-old Nysa and five-year-old Yug) and family, he adores them and is definitely a hands-on father. This time, for Father’s Day, the star, after much coaxing, took some time off from his work and agreed to share some tips on parenting, how special his children are to him and what it means for him to be a father, in his own words...
“Every generation dictates how it needs to be parented. What worked for our parents and us does not necessarily work for our children. The basic values stay the same and yet the parenting changes. I am just a custodian of my children. I allow them to grow to be who they want to be. I do not impinge my personality on to them. Children have the purest of souls. I feel that they choose their parents before they are born, at least this is what I believe. My children are brutally honest with me and one must allow them to be so.
Nysa is my biggest critic. She gives me such interesting perspectives that I find solutions to seemingly irresolvable problems each time I discuss something with her. Yug and Nysa have had a calming influence on me. They have independent thoughts and we must let them grow as individuals, grooming them in the right direction. I always tell my children the pros and cons of a situation but I let them make their decisions. Children learn from their mistakes, we can only guide them to do what is right for them and for their surroundings without hurting anyone. They should feel free to discuss anything with their parents. Befriending our children is the biggest secret to parenting.
I have been away from home a lot while prepping and shooting Shivaay, which is my home production. Since I am directing producing and acting in the film, it has taken a lot from me. Of course, I miss my children a lot. They came to be with me in Landour as well as in Bulgaria. I have however been breathing, eating, sleeping my film. It’s been quite taxing emotionally. I hope my children will forgive me when they finally see Shivaay and understand why their father had to be away so much in the past two years. Though I make sure I FaceTime them every day.
Nysa has always been the super-wise one and has great one-liners. She is such a sharp thinker and analyses everything. Yug said something beautiful to me the other day. I was preparing to go to shoot and he asked me why I needed to go to shoot everyday and could I not take an off for one day. I tried to explain to him that I need to work. He asked me why I needed to work. I tried to simplify things and told him I needed to work so I could earn money for him and give him what he needs so he is happy. He turned around and said, ‘How can money make anybody happy?’ I was amazed at my five-year-old’s wisdom and had no answer for him but he got me thinking. A child’s world is way simpler than ours and that teaches us so much. We have to be ready to learn as parents.
Our children root us in our realities. Becoming a father, of course, changed me. Once the children are born one’s home is a very different space. My children are the light of my life. To be honest they are also my stress busters. One hug from Nysa or Yug can make me forget the days toil. They are my universe...”
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