Mothers. Where would the world be without them?

I love that line “Mothers. Where would the world be without them?”

Where would the world be without mom? Probably in ruins 🙂 A mother is the most loving, understanding, steadfast and merciful person in your life. She is our consolation in sorrow, our hope in misery, and our strength in weakness and I cannot imagine a life without my mother.

Somebody once told my mom that she had an insane, old world, past life connection with her daughters: that’s my sister and me and you know what? When I heard that, I wasn’t really surprised because I think we all have some inexplicable deep connection with our mothers, because it seems so bizarre for somebody to just lay down their life for you, after they have known you for a mere 9 months. I mean 9 months isn’t enough time, is it? And most of that 9 months, you’re just a kidney bean.

Maybe I will understand it better once I become a mother but till then, I am awed by the extent a mother goes for her child and I feel maybe there are several lifetimes worth of connections being carried forward which causes a mother to know you better than yourself, to understand your needs even before you comprehend that there is such a thing as need, to scold you when you’re wrong and immediately turn to mush when you start crying. How? How do you do it mom?

I asked my mother once, if it was tough for her raising rebellious, unruly children such as my sister and myself, and all she did was smile and stroke my hair and tell me if it weren’t for all that we wouldn’t have turned into the people we are today, and we wouldn’t have truly been “her” children if we hadn’t been rebellious 🙂 Turns out, mum was a bit of a rebel herself (cue in my mom’s big rebellion for true love and her marriage to my dad- a story for another time 😀 )

In our time of need, our mother went through hell and high water to make sure we were ok. In our time of weakness, she hid her own pain and tears, to wipe ours away, in our time of happiness, she cleverly disguised the weight she was carrying (to ensure our happiness remains intact), and in our time of success she silently, and slowly slid into the shadows somewhere while we stood in the limelight, basking in the appreciation.

How is a mother this selfless? How is she able to do so much with no reward and sometimes even no recognition? How do we repay her for all her sacrifices, her strength, her love, sympathy, wisdom and support? And when we try, she rewards you with such gratitude, that I am humbled, ashamed and truly taken aback.

My mother gave me this greeting card for my birthday this year. I was so surprised and moved, I had tears in my eyes and couldn’t even bear to finish reading the whole thing. All I ever did was hold her hand, she did so much more for me, when will she ever realise that? Do mothers ever realise it? Do they even keep count?

From mom to me, 2013 August

From mom to me, 2013 August

From mom to me, 2013 August

From mom to me, 2013 August

From mom to me, 2013 August

From mom to me, 2013 August

Mother’s are unanswered questions. What drives them, what supports them, what gives them the strength, I don’t know but I agree with George Washington in what he said,  “My Mother is the most beautiful woman I ever saw. I attribute all my success in my life to the moral, intellectual, and physical education I received from her”.

My dear darling mother Rekha,

I love you mom. I promise to be your strength, your heart, your support, your confidant and your friend along with being the good, obedient daughter that you deserve. I can never quite thank you for all the times, you brought me back from the dark places I have been in, I can never quite understand how you dive into situations to rescue me without knowing anything, just the fact that I need you being enough to drive you. I can never see you as somebody other than my mother, (as if that is your only role in life 😀 ) Every, time your knee pains, or every time you forget something, I curse the stupid rules of the world and society, for taking me away from you. Whenever I see a new wrinkle appear on your face, I am painfully reminded that you are an year older, but even then so beautiful. If there was anyway I could go back to the beginning of my life and choose a mother, I would still choose you, and put in an application to God, to Bless me with you (as a mother) if ever I am reborn, because I know as much as you do that I would be lost without you. 🙂

 

mummy and me

mummy and me

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My birthday- My Big Day!

Truly! Celebrating Birthdays is an art. I’d like to think it’s an acquired skill. If I was to think otherwise, I’d be depressed in life because I would have to come to terms with the fact that I most certainly don’t have that skill. 😦

My birthday is the single most exciting day of my life. Whenever I have kids, I probably won’t be as excited for their birthdays as I’ll still be for my own. My parents used to make such a big deal out of my birthday. There wasn’t always a big party or a huge cake, but there was always Chocolate cake, my favorite breakfast- pancakes, my favorite dinner- mac and cheese with grilled chicken & mashed potatoes on the side and presents. Lots and lots of presents.  Those were some of my best birthdays. I don’t want to sound completely hopeless, as if all my birthdays were disastrous. I have had some pretty fantastic birthdays in my childhood and some in my adult life as well you know. But they were all unplanned (atleast I hadn’t planned it).

My mother would go to all the trouble for my yummy dinner, my dad would smother me with kisses and tell everybody how he always gets confused about whether my birthday is August 16th or August 17th, and I used to get offended every year. The truth is, he was just kidding. There’s no way in hell he could get confused over my birthday and I knew it, he knew it, the whole world knew it, but it never stopped him from joking about it. 🙂

This tremendous amount of expectation I have from my birthdays mostly comes from my childhood, when my dad used to take special pride in reminding me of how special my birthday is. I mean he never even referred to my birthday as “Birthday”. He talked of it, like it was a National holiday- you know like the 4th of July? My dad would call my birthday “the 17th of August”. 😀

He would start reminding me of it a months in advance, to the extent of asking mundane questions like “Honey, when is the 17th of August?” I mean come on dad! But I’m smiling right now as I write this, it was so obvious and was a “Duh!” moment most of the time, but I still smiled, I still got excited. My dad passed away a month before my 21st birthday but even today, I can hear him say “Darling, 17th August is almost here” 🙂

Ever since I was 13 I’d plan and plan for my birthday, sometimes, months in advance, sometimes even an year in advance, and then at the end of the “Big Day” I always feel like it was a let down. I wonder how it can possibly be the most planned day but end up being the single most disappointing day ever, even more than New Year’s Eve. Perhaps in the case of my birthdays, anticipation is inversely proportional to success of the birthday. Back in the day when my parents used to plan my birthday parties, I remember everything would be exactly the way you wanted it to be, the guests would be as per your choosing, the food would be as per your liking, the decorations would be as per your approval, even then, there would be something that embarrassed me and taint the memory of the party for.

How do some people manage to get it so right? They don’t plan, they don’t even care, but it all magically works out. They get the best presents, the funniest wishes and it’s a completely fantastic day in total! I think, I have literally, written enough to make myself sad. I manage to plan all these fantastic things for my husband’s birthday, family members’ birthdays, friends’s birthdays, and execute them perfectly but my own…? 😦

My birthday is coming up in exactly a week, and this year, I decided NOT to plan. No party, no cake, no friends or presents…nada nada nada!!!!

I am going to go with the flow. I will keep no expectations from the day and the day will not disappoint me. Even though, I know in the deepest corner of my heart, that birthdays haven’t been the same since my dad died. So, whatever happens, I will always be disappointed that my dad’s not there to share my big special day with me like he used to.

This year, my dad decided to make me feel special from beyond the grave. I haven’t had the courage to go through his belongings since he died, but I did this year- 6 years after he died. I found a note from my dad. It was scribbled in a notepad hidden in his belongings. It was addressed to me and it was so wonderful and symbolic. I had it framed and hung it on my bedroom wall. It’s my dad’s birthday gift to me, makes up for the 6 birthdays he has missed.

Thanks Dad, and a Happy Birthday to Me! 😀

My dad's birthday note to me, 6 years after his passing.

My dad’s birthday note to me, 6 years after his passing.

 

The actual text of my dad's note

The actual text of my dad’s note

 

My 3rd Birthday, August/17/1989, Vancouver BC, Canada

My 3rd Birthday, August/17/1989, Vancouver BC, Canada