Tag Archives: Mother

Wo(w!)men

Regrettably, unable to speculate creatively as would an artist or a wordsmith of merit on what would be a man if not civilized by the women in his life, am content forwarding some beautiful thoughts related to the subject, anonymusly authored:

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LET HER TAKE HER TIME!!

vide Anantharaman Mahadevan

When she takes her time to drink a barely warm cup of tea, let her. She’s given her time to cook your meal and serve it to you before she sat to drink her tea.

When she takes time to select a dish from the menu, let her. Every day, for every meal she has prepared she has given her time to think about what to make, how much, and for whom.

When she takes time to dress up to go out with you, let her. She has given her time to make sure that your ironed clothes are in their place and knows better than you, where your socks are. She has dressed up her child thoughtfully, to look like the most smartly dressed up child around.

When she takes time to watch TV mindlessly, let her. She is only half concentrating and has a clock ticking in her head. As soon as it’s nearing dinner time, you’ll see her disappear to get things ready.

When she takes time to serve you breakfast, let her. She has kept aside the burnt toast for herself and is taking the time to serve her family the nicest ones she could manage.

When she takes time after her tea to just sit by the window and stare into nothingness, let her. It’s her life, she’s given you countless hours of her life.

Let her take a few minutes for herself.

She’s rushing through her life, giving chunks of her time whenever needed, wherever needed.

Don’t rush her more than she rushes herself.

Don’t push her harder than she pushes herself.

A tribute to all Women…

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Survival kit for Mothers!! Another beautiful thought to share, what if a bit wordy!

Vide Sarabada Gopinath in PCK

LESSON FOR LIFE💝 

My mom felt exhausted. She was irritable and grumpy, until one day, suddenly, she changed.

One day my dad said to her: ‘I’m going to have a few beers with friends.’

Mom: ‘Okay.’

My brother said to her: ‘I’m doing poorly in all subjects in college.’

Mom: ‘Okay, you will recover, and if you don’t, you repeat the semester, but you pay the tuition.’

My sister said to her: ‘I smashed the car.’

My mom replied: ‘Okay, take it to the car shop and get it fixed.’

All of us were worried to see these reactions coming from mom.

We suspected that she had gone to the doctor and was prescribed some pills called “I don’t give a damn”.

We then proposed to do an “intervention” with my mother to remove her from any possible addiction she had towards some anti-tantrum medication.

But then mom gathered us around her and explained:

“It took me a long time to realize that each person is responsible for their life. It took me years to discover that my anguish, anxiety, my depression, my courage, my insomnia and my stress, does not solve your problems but aggravates mine.

I am not responsible for the actions of anyone and it’s not my job to provide happiness.

Therefore, I came to the conclusion that my duty to myself is to remain calm and let each one of you solve what corresponds to you.

I have taken courses in yoga, meditation, miracles, human development, mental hygiene, vibration and neurolinguistic programming and in all of them, I found a common denominator. I can only control myself, you have all the necessary resources to solve your own problems despite how hard they may be. My job is to PRAY for you, LOVE you, ENCOURAGE you, but it’s up to YOU to solve them and find your happiness.

I can only give you my advice if you ask me and it depends on you to follow it or not. There are consequences, good or bad, to your decisions and YOU have to live with them.”

Everyone at home was speechless.

From that day on, the family began to function better because everyone in the house knew exactly what it is that they needed to do!

End

This Animal Did Change Its Spot

Received this Tamizh clip yesterday – it’s about actor Madhavan who is successfully holding his own for several decades now in the volatile world of seven-day wonders – Kollywood. Though not an avid film goer/watcher, rarely seeing a movie from start all the way to finish, I personally loved his comic sense whenever he appeared on the screen. A serial of his I watched eagerly and in full years ago where he appeared as a South-Indian groom in a Panju family. Not one of those mind-numbing antics passing for comedy, but truly and refreshingly hilarious.

Am told this is an old clip, date and occasion not known to me (My version of WP does not let me upload). He’s talking about Mother’s Day. He recalls affectionately, nostalgically, gratefully three pieces of wisdom given to him by his Mom that kept/keeps him going in his profession, internalizing and living them out:  a) Don’t hurt anyone intentionally b) Don’t cheat anyone out of his money; make a honest living and c) Treat people, big or small, like people with self-respect due to them.

Well, it seems to have certainly worked for him. Kudos to him for his assiduous following and to his mom for the sage advice

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Got me thinking about my Mom and my life. No more now, my Mom had/was: an unwelcome father-less birth, a SSC-pass (given to reading Times Of India every morning!), a typical house-wife of her times, lived most of her life on my father’s meager income, poor on wiles and guile’s…

But I cannot recall any session with her when she sat me down and imparted wisdom.

The first third of my life was spent joyfully in Matunga where the entire neighborhood was friends, some closer than others. Soft-ball cricket, Chess, Cards, crazy over songs of Shankar-Jaikishen, O P Nayyar…, listening to the latest stories of James Hadley Chase (my friend went one up on his narration), fighting over who was more delightful to watch – Gary Sobers, Rohan Kanhai or our own Jaisimha…

Strangely no politics, no religion, no academics, no girls (I swear), no restaurants, gyms/clubs…Weird? May be, but it was fun. Mom used to search for and drag me home in the evening.

No time for the parents.

Then came college, job, marriage and children.

Once again, no time yet for the parents. Poor wife and children didn’t fare any better. The job taking away the second and a good part of the final third of my life – it was one big challenge as we were trying to make it in the emerging area of software and exports. We felt it was our show though we owned no part of it, giving it all we had to make it big.

Along the way a dear Aunt passed away, followed by my Father and then the Mother only a few years ago.

Those sessions just didn’t take place.

But in contexts very ordinary, the wisdom did come out, unadorned, unheralded, not in bold, italic or in quotes, that it was not recognized as such until later.  

To bear out what I’m saying, here’s a story:

For years, it was a daily routine every morning for me to go down and pluck flowers off the plants in our building (apartment complex) for pooja. With very few residents in the building, usually I was the only one at it.

One day a lady, probably in her fifties, unexpectedly appeared on the scene. She and her man had taken a flat on rent in our building recently. She began reaching the spot earlier in the morning and cleaning up the flowers before I got there, without any compunction. I was irritated, offended to see a new-comer, on rent at that, asserting herself so unabashedly in regard to admittedly a shared resource in this manner. My long-standing ‘proprietary’ and exclusive access was thwarted. So I did what I could – I rose even earlier to get to the flowers. Many days I did (she did not go entirely without flowers on those days), and some days I didn’t, returning with a poor collection. On those occasions, came home and bitched about it bitterly.

‘Why are you so upset? Won’t gods in her house also need flowers? It would be the same Krishna and Shiva of our house in theirs too. Would you deny them?’ Lifting her head up, my old lady would say it and go back to her chores.

When said, it did nothing to comfort me. Well, I thought why can’t the interloper buy her flowers from the market instead of taking away mine? She can certainly ask her son (living nearby) to get it for her.

Though not at first, the wisdom went home soon enough. And when it did, the profundity of those words facile hit me hard. Made so much sense. Coming from a lady whose views, I held, would not rise above her deep roots in tradition to a fundamentally true spiritual/religious insight, and hence were never taken seriously to avoid arguments. And how she surprised me time and again is a subject for when I feel encouraged to talk about.

Since then, my routine changed. Whenever I reached the flowers first, I would knock on her doors and offer her gladly a part of the collection. So much so, it wasn’t long before she totally stopped coming while I made the deliveries at her door-step.

The two became such a nice couple I grew fond of. How they had changed! (?!?)

Even today I go to pick flowers and freely offer to one or two neighbors who for some reason can’t venture out.

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This is not the only spot (dhaag/blemish) this animal changed for a happier mind on the old lady’s say-so, totally undramatic without raising the voice, rolling the eyes, pointing the fingers or thumping the table.

As I said, that’s for some other day, may be.

End

They Also Serve Who…

The daughter in her forties and her 70-year old mother worked in the house as domestic help – the daughter cooked while the mother washed and swept the front-yard. At work, they rarely talked to each other. From their demeanor, one would never suspect they were mother and daughter living under one roof.

The daughter had grown up in her uncle’s house in Chennai while the mother had brought up her sister in the village.

It’s a sad story how her father abandoned her mother with two children while they were going some place by bus. Yes, he just disappeared at a bus stop leaving the illiterate woman in the middle of nowhere without a penny in her purse. Somehow she struggled to reach a relative’s house and find her way back with the children in tow.  The man was rumored to have moved in with another woman in the same neighborhood. With no further contact all his life, the mother went for his last rites on his demise!

As for her, she found her man cheating on her and pestering her for favors at other times. Disgusted she walked out of her marriage with her child, never to look back again.

In certain sections of the society it is not uncommon to find these stories oft-repeated where the man goes off with impunity to live with another woman. No questions asked. And the woman struggles with her life working as a domestic help or as a small-time vendor selling flowers, vegetables, etc.

For some years now the mother is living with her daughter in Chennai, visiting off and on her other daughter happily married and living in Pondicherry – the one silver-lining in the story.  

How are the two getting on? The daughter like a stern-faced head-mistress and the mother like a beyond-caring errant child. According to the mother, they have their spats, mostly scripted and acted out by the daughter. She could not put her finger on what upset the daughter. She just shrugged her shoulders: ’What to do? She’s like that… I let it pass.’

After that long prelude, now to the plot, thin but deep:

One day the daughter looked a little distracted. Reason: The mother had decided to go to Pondicherry for a month to be with her other daughter.

While talking about it, she said: ‘I can’t stay without Thaayi (her mother).’ Came as a surprise. But she repeated herself twice.

When this was carried later to Thaayi while she was sweeping the dead neem leaves off the yard, her response:

‘Don’t kid with me.’

‘No. I’m not.’

She went back to her job. After a few minutes, she came back:

‘She said that? Did she say it in jest or…’

‘No, she was right earnest saying she can’t live without you in the house.’

She too appeared surprised. Surely gladdened her heart though she didn’t exactly go into a dance. May be it’ll get at least her thru the next few spats to come?

Besides the obvious moral of the story: ‘When you care about someone, say it loud and often to the person.’…there’s more to the story (with apologies to Milton John), I thought:

‘They also serve…

who carry a good word spoken,

a warm feeling expressed…

to its rightful addressee,

who wasn’t around then.’

A great opportunity, often overlooked, to bring people closer happily at no cost and with little effort!

End

Source: Mother and Daughter – hand-painted by ANJU AGRAWAL listed at fizdi.com/