Recapturing the joy : A Mother’s Day Post


Mom and Me

I am not exactly a ” One day celebration” person, for me each living moment is filled with love and gratitude for those who are precious to me but then I realized that under the pressures of daily life, our own baggage of worries, emotions, work we tend to forget to appreciate those who love us unconditionally. Mother’s Day became special to me since then.

I have written a lot about my mother who is now 79, a graceful woman, full of life, courage and inner strength, surrounded by her teenage grandchildren. [ Links ]

Amma gave me my identity, roots and the wings to fly. I outgrew her lap but never her love.

I wondered How SHE felt being a mother and that triggered off this special post on Mother’s Day.

” Amma, How did you feel being a mother?” , I asked.

She was amused. She had never actually thought about it and could not bring herself to put a life time of emotions, challenges and rewards into just a few words. A first person account required looking within honestly and it sure was a difficult task as none of us wanted a mushy post.

In few lines she let me in into the depths of her heart. It is the best gift a mother can give to her daughter.
Mom said,

It is interesting and a little disturbing to look back to one’s youth and the first flush of motherhood. On hindsight, a number of feelings and actions, responses and reactions seem sentimental, immature, thoughtless – or at least not well thought out – and also, to one’s surprise and embarrassment, neurotic!

That first wonderful, lump-in-the-throat, knot-in-the-stomach sensation when looking at and touching the smooth glowing cheek or the thin long delicate fingers is incomparable. Those hesitant first steps, the lisping or jumbled use of words brought out immeasurable joy and pride in the baby’s achievements.

At each little mastery of an action or each small bruise or hurt, the child would run into one’s arms or cry out ‘Mamma’. One laughed and wept along with it and was totally engrossed and involved in the child’s mischief, pranks and all the pains of growing up.

As a mother one cared and shared, and thought that this baby, now a toddler, then a pert little girl, is also learning to share and care. But the girl had an agenda of her own. Suddenly one saw that the role of a mother as imagined or perhaps, vaguely understood could be questioned.

Please! Can I not live my own life? Do I have to answer for each little thing I do? I am disgusted with this refrain “it is for your own good”. I know what it means and I can take care of myself – thank you!

There is much heartbreaking pain and avoidable conflict. An uneasy kind of friendship develops as the teens are about to end, and one hopes that some understanding and maturity comes along to make life a little less rough – not for the daughter or son alone but also for the mother too!

It is when watching the grandchildren that at last one realizes many things. Seeing one’s grown up child as a mother react and deal with her own children fetches one short. Was this the way I behaved, one thinks, seeing an instant thoughtless reaction of the mother to one’s grandchild. Sometimes one approves, and at other times one feels sad for one’s past reaction and the present reaction of the daughter to her children.

Yet, I think with joy at what I helped create, and with understanding at what this individual has become today. Let us not go into what all shaped her and made her what she is. She is and one has been and will remain essentially a mother – friend and sharer of her joys, sorrows, her ideas and queries. One is learning once again to look anew at her life and motherhood.

Me and Adi, my first born

I realized the profound role of a mother only when I became one. Still, sometime I wonder why some mothers fail to untie the apron strings especially with the boys and set them free? Why they cling to them, smothering their growth? what chemical changes take place to turn a mother into a much disliked mother – in – law ? Is a mother’s love conditional at times ? I leave you with Some food for thought.

******

This post is part of the Blogadda Mother’s Day Contest

Thank you PringOO website for this warm gesture , I would love to gift this beautiful chocolate and teddy customized mug to my beloved ma .

National Girl Child Day Post: A daughter that never was and A Poem


I dedicate this post to all the daughters and their mothers across the globe. Let me begin by posting one of the most beautiful poems I have read about a mother daughter relationship. you can read the entire poem on kavita kosh site Mera Naya Bachpan by Subhadra Kumari Chauhan.

I always wanted a daughter and after my first child even thought of adopting one to complete the family but unfortunately the family did not agree and just my luck that I had another son after four years.

The radiologists at that time saw my desperation for a girl child and smilingly said, ” maybe it’s a girl, so smile young lady”.

Delighted I bought  little pretty dresses for the baby which was due anytime. When I found that I had a boy agai.n, I wept but then the cherub was such a delight that I gave all my love to him. I had to dress the little one in frocks and other girly clothes for sometime, to the dislike of my MIL but I fulfilled my little desire.

My little boy in a lehnga I wore at the age of one year

shubhang not even one in a pretty blue frock

I decided that day to do as much as I could for any poor girl who needed any help in any field especially education. I regularly help the girls in the neighborhood, the maid’s daughters and give out books, clothes and other things to the needy girls encouraging them to study and make their mark in the society on their own.

My cook’s all three daughters have completed their graduation  done courses in computers etc and are now working at good posts in reputed companies even MNCs. what a proud moment for a mother who is now nearing 60 and all her life worked in other people’s houses to raise , educate  and make her girls independent. all the three girls save money for their future and never give in to age-old customs and pressures of society. Kudos to one such brave mother and all her daughters.

Here are some lines from the poem I want to share with a translation by me . I can not match the beauty of the original but making an effort ot send the message to all my non hindi speaking friends..

मैं बचपन को बुला रही थी बोल उठी बिटिया मेरी।
नंदन वन-सी फूल उठी यह छोटी-सी कुटिया मेरी॥

‘माँ ओ’ कहकर बुला रही थी मिट्टी खाकर आयी थी।
कुछ मुँह में कुछ लिये हाथ में मुझे खिलाने लायी थी॥

पुलक रहे थे अंग, दृगों में कौतुहल था छलक रहा।
मुँह पर थी आह्लाद-लालिमा विजय-गर्व था झलक रहा॥

मैंने पूछा ‘यह क्या लायी?’ बोल उठी वह ‘माँ, काओ’।
हुआ प्रफुल्लित हृदय खुशी से मैंने कहा – ‘तुम्हीं खाओ’॥

पाया मैंने बचपन फिर से बचपन बेटी बन आया।
उसकी मंजुल मूर्ति देखकर मुझ में नवजीवन आया॥

My translation of these lines.

I was remembering my childhood

when my little daughter spoke

blossoming  my  little home

like a beautiful fragrant forest

” ma come” she called out to me in baby voice

she had eaten mud

her little mouth  filled with some and

some more she held in her little hands for me to eat

her  body radiating with joy and

every part of hers filled with wonder

her face beaming with ecstacy and the glow of victory

I asked ” what have you got?” ” mama eat” she replied

with a heart brimming with mirth, I said ” you eat”

I found my childhood again,

it returned in my daughter’s form

my life  rejuvenated

watching  her delightful charm

***

Give your daughters a healthy, secure, safe, educated, and respectable future. Let them blossom and fill your world with joy and pride.

Stop female infanticide, child marriages and crime against women. They have their own identity stronger than just being daughters, sisters, wives, mothers etc. Give them winds to fly and discover their own horizons.