My mother is pleasantly surprised by my mothering instincts, she tells me. I was the independent, selfish one of the family. Independent because I was staying away from home for my Engineering and selfish because I used to miss all those family functions for my studies and even insisted on going on study tours instead of rushing back home.. Nobody in the family understood the importance of sessionals then! (Now we all know how important that can be!)
I was the one who used to shirk filling in Amma’s place at her creshe, taking care of the babies there, when she wanted to go out for some important work. I hated the smells and was bored to wits, feeding the kids there and made my displeasure evident!
And look at her, now, Amma would say, gesturing to me when I followed my younger one patiently to feed her.
Our mothers know we have changed for our kids, but do our own kids ever know? Are they aware of the metamorphosis we go through being a mother?
Well, if they would listen, I could go on listing the changes, the sacrifices, the pains I have gone through all for the joy of motherhood, to see that special smile on their face, to bring that extra twinkle in their eye. Let me list them and hope they might see it sometime or just jot it down for all the mothers who have done all this and more…
I love kids now, just to watch them and surprisingly not just mine and that is a change only my young ones could have brought over me.
Patience, is one virtue, I have gained through all the experience of rearing my two.
The sleepless nights, when I have carried them, trying to put them to sleep.
The younger one was very particular, she wanted me to carry her and walk around the house to put her to sleep and she would kick me, when I stopped walking.
And when I hummed, sleepily, she would say, Amma, please don’t sing, embarrassing the singer in me!
The numerous times when she threw up on my head and shoulders, I wanted to cringe and scream aloud, my frustration, but kept my mouth shut, so as not to provoke K who hates to see me disturbed.
The meals I have missed in my effort to feed them first.
The accidents I have barely avoided, in my hurry to reach home before she does to see her smile when she gets down from the school bus.
Missing the career ladder, the ladder, which I forgot even, existed.
None of this was forced down, well, some were, but all of these changes were my own choice and I still don’t regret doing any of them.
Well, there are many more experiences and some so much personal; I can’t even jot them down. But will they realise this …our kids…ever. But, I suppose, they shouldn’t…for how will they face the world, marriage and their own kids with an open mind.