I have just gone in to take a shower. My son seems to have this uncanny ability of sensing this precise moment, and chooses it to ask questions across the closed door – over the gushing sounds of the shower water.
There is a sharp knock. I pretend not to hear it. My son repeatedly hollers, “Mom, mom”, till I give in and answer wearily.
“Mom, where is the cordless phone?” asks my son. I tell him that it must have gotten wedged between the two seats of our sofa.
I come out of the shower, and in just a few minutes, my daughter asks me if I know where one of her workbooks is! Sigh!
And this is an integral part of being a mother – the skill of knowing where every article in our home is at any point in time. But, I do also know that every mom is blessed with some form of sophisticated MOM-GPS that thankfully helps her remember and identify the precise location of her daughter’s favourite hoodie, or her son’s graph notebook that has mysteriously disappeared from his school bag, and the hundred other things that go missing in the house.
And then again, most moms are also walking Mompaedias, for they need to answer questions that straddle many levels. From answering questions about why rainbows are formed to answering questions about the purpose of life (to a teenager), to answering questions about fashion, which are immediately deemed as being outdated, to answering questions about the little bird that visits the plants on the balcony – a mom needs to have answers to simply everything.
A mom also knows that while her sub-ten year old will cling on to her every word, her teenager will probably listen with a disinterested look, or with an expression that says, ‘Can’t wait for you to finish, mom’.
But from all these years as a mom, I do know that children listen, even when they don’t want to be seen as listening. They watch and they learn.
And they do love their moms, for no one in the world could take her place. When she is not around, they even miss her nagging. The energy of the house is pure mom. And come Mother’s Day every year, they pack all their love into their lovely cards and gifts, and make the day super special for her.
My daughter has already given me a beautiful coffee mug; my son is giving me knowing and secret smiles, and is slinking from one room to another, planning his big surprise.
There was a time, not many years ago, when the excitement of keeping the mother’s day gift a surprise was too much to bear for my son. But he has now transformed into this big boy, who is able to keep secrets.
So, I wait patiently.
I think of my journey as a mother and what it has meant to me. I realize that this is a love so deep, which only keeps growing with time. I wonder how one heart can hold so much love. But that is who a mother is – every pore of hers filled with love. A love that comes camouflaged in many flavours – happy, sad, silly, proud, angry, irritated and nagging, but all of them mere manifestations of that one all- encompassing love.
Happy Mother’s Day to you all.
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