Life & Reflections

All the Mothers

This is for all the mothers who love their children more than they will ever know.

For the mothers who sacrifice their independence, dreams and futures for that of their children’s. The mothers who want to utter the words ‘I love you, child’, but which instead comes out as: ‘Have you eaten yet?’

This is for the mothers who said their goodbyes to colleagues and traded in their careers for a lifetime of cleaning, cooking and caring for their families. Whose workplaces are now their homes; whose occupations are now full-time caretakers, cooks, chauffeurs and more; and whose wages are most definitely underpaid for the sheer immensity of what they do. For the mothers who are told that their jobs are meaningless, stupid and a waste of time–by ungrateful children, thoughtless husbands, and a society which only accords value to those whose work can be quantified economically.

This is for the mother who spends hours on her knees scrubbing the toilet and on her toes dusting shelves and cupboards, so that her family can return home to floors polished like glass, the smell of clean laundry, and a home-cooked dinner on the table. For the mother who searches for and experiments with new recipes because her children have told her, “I hate your cooking, it’s always the same.” Who imagines looks of glee and words of praise after cooking her children’s favourite dishes, but who instead receives a grunt that the food “could be better”.

This is for the mother who patiently listens to the problems of her children, but who rarely shares with them her own. Who acts as their emotional punching bag when they’ve had a bad day in school, haplessly and silently listening on as they rail and rage. Who’s sharply told, “It’s none of your business” when they are her business, one which she’s invested most of her time, money and her very life on. For the mother who proudly recounts to her children the daily chores she’s completed, perhaps with a certain tinge of panic that they don’t know, don’t understand, how much she does and what she does for them. Who has suffered countless burns, cuts, pricks and scaldings when they’re not around; and the inflicting of intangible and unspoken hurts when they sometimes are.

This is for the mother who has done all this for me, and who is all this to me–and much, much more.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mummy.

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