Work has been insane. Oh boy, it has. But if there is ever a post that is never too late to publish – it is one which voices the appreciation and gratitude I have for my mother.
So why is this called a mothers day quell? Simply because that is what I believe all mothers are. There is a certain rebellion in them, a spirit that is needed to survive motherhood. While I am no mother, many around me have become mothers and I too have heard anxieties of mothers, including my very own. Without that rebellion, the tendency is to meet the (low and often times, misleading) standards of society, raise your child in a way deemed acceptable by people around you and of course there is that tendency to kow-tow to whatever practices past generations have grown to appreciate i.e. whatever your mother-in-law may be telling you! It is so much pressure that any abiding human will go utterly insane. There is too much judgement, not everyone will be happy with your choices and decisions. So there, rebel. Rebel not for the sake of it but for the sake of that child you bore for 9 months.
Why you wonder? Because I sincerely believe rebelling is a service to your child. No two kids will be alike. There is no “rule book” on how to raise a kid. To me, all that is needed is pure instinct, empathy and observation. Fortunately for me, I had a mother that did that. Without which, my life would have taken a completely different path. I will be forever grateful for that. And sure, my decisions in life are not always going to be aligned to yours, mum. That does not mean you are a failure. That just means you have succeeded in developing a person that is discerning and with a mind of her own. Not a factory production, but a fully unique and attuned individual. If ever there is a time where you should sit back, relax and fully TRUST in all your efforts to raise both sister and I – the time is NOW. It is a scary thought, but now, life teaches us lessons. We will fall, we will hurt (in fact probably harder than we ever did before just because there is more at stake). But we will grow, it will be painful, but we will grow. And growth is an outcome of pain, one cannot come without the other. And more importantly, you are not accountable for pain that comes our way.
For other mothers that may be wondering: what then is there to be done? What do you do when your baby has all grown up and is experiencing the world on her or his own terms? What do you do when you feel that you no longer have control of your now fully grown adult ‘child’?
1. Share. Thoughts and wisdom and experiences. But let go of the pressure of making sure we adhere to them.
2. Listen. But don’t expect us to have similar views, thoughts, passions and goals to you. We were raised by you, but are not you.
3. Love. Unconditionally. Always. How many mothers can truly say that? Will you still love your child if they are gay? or if they are a murderer?
4. Empower. Give us the love of learning, make us seek the right answers on our own. Make us feel like we are fully capable and in control of our lives. Not because we truly are, but because you have taught us to seek the right sources to make sure we are.
Your child will one day be going through a journey of discovery. A journey where he or she discovers their real purpose in life. There will be distractions and millions of others telling them that they will fail and not succeed. If your child has taken a calculated risk (because you raised them well!) and have proven time and time again that they are in control – have faith. In moments where their self-doubt is highest, at moments when the whole world is denying them the opportunity — you literally are the only person who can be genuinely happy for them, and genuinely wanting the best for them. Your support means the world to them.
Remember to relax. There is no competition for the best mother. Even if there were, no mother will ever be able to know if they are a good mother or not. Simply because, a true measure of success – is what the child becomes after the mother is no longer there. So relax, enjoy the moment, love and be happy.
I close here with a poem for my mother and all mothers out there.