Some time back, my sister and I were having a discussion on marriage vows.
“For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish”
We said how difficult it is to commit to another human being like this – for better or for worse? Is it even possible to love another human being so unconditionally? Our parents teach us that it is.
I do not know what makes my mother continue to love me when I get from bad to worse! What I do know is that even at the age of 29 I can throw tantrums because mothers can’t break-up with their children.
Few years back, I was crying about something to my elder sister. She tried to console me with reason. It did not work. She tried to give some positive examples. I got even more angry. No matter what she said, I continued to be hopeless. Finally, she said that I need to STOP, because it is very upsetting for her and my parents when I cry like this.
“This has happened to me! You won’t understand! Only I can understand! I am the victim here! Not you!” I snapped.
“Nothing can happen to you alone! Whatever happens to you affects the rest of us! And maybe I cannot understand. But you don’t understand either how painful it is to watch someone younger than you, who you love, suffer, and not being able to help them!”
How tough it must be for parents? I don’t know what it must be like to constantly worry about a grown-up child. To keep telling them that everything will be okay when in your heart you are too scared to imagine that it may not? To feel like it is your primal responsibility to protect them and make them happy, and yet feel powerless because the universe does not care. Or because God does not listen.
How do they deal with it? How does a mother feel when she cannot really make things right for her child? Maybe she can solve the manageable problems first. She can cook her daughter’s favourite dish. Or tidy her wardrobe. She can still do whatever she can in her human capacity to make life easier and better for her child. And the thing with mothers is that they keep doing it. For adult children. Then their children. How exhausting it must be! Both physically and emotionally!
I have blogged about this before:
Just a couple of days back, my mother had packed my tiffin box with fruits and salad. I got busy with work and brought back the food home, untouched. After dinner, my mother started eating the leftovers.
“How come you are eating the pomegranate, I thought you didn’t like it. Never seen you having it.” I asked.
“It’s not that I don’t like it, slicing the vegetables and fruits is a pain. I give it to you and your father, but don’t bother slicing for myself.” she replied.
There are small (big) things that our mothers do for us. Sometimes it may be having the leftover rice for dinner because she is too tired after making rotis for the rest of us. Or maybe buying that ridiculously expensive dress that I was drooling at the mall, and then claiming that it was on a sale.
We notice that they do all of this. We just don’t thank them enough. If we did, how many thank yous would we owe them each day? And who says I love you and thank you every day anyway?
Today is my mother’s birthday. She does not check Facebook regularly. On her last to last birthday, I had to tell her that people have wished her on her timeline. She is supposed to reply or at least ‘like’ their post. She had asked me if she has to comment on their timeline or hers. On her last birthday, she had requested me to respond to all her birthday posts because what if she makes typos! I had refused. I told her she should learn. She will comment just fine. And she did. Perfectly! She has not subscribed to my blog because she does not check her emails. I doubt if she will read this post today. But I hope she does! 🙂