“Through the blur, I wondered if I was alone or if other parents felt the same way I did - that everything involving our children was painful in some way. The emotions, whether they were joy, sorrow, love or pride, were so deep and sharp that in the end they left you raw, exposed and yes, in pain. The human heart was not designed to beat outside the human body and yet, each child represented just that - a parent's heart bared, beating forever outside its chest.”
― Debra Ginsberg
Last night my teenage son announced that he was going out for dinner with his friends. I had just come away from my kitchen, after making the rotis, that he loved so much, and the dal, the younger sunny boy loved. There was peas pullav too, if he wanted rice, which invariably he would want if I hadn't made it. I had just settled down feeling smug, that I had just about managed to understand my boy and today I had succeeded. And then his 'matter of fact' announcement happened. My heart was angry. I did the first thing i'm sure any mom would do, I asked him 'WHY'. His answer was simple and just that. He wanted to go out and eat with his friends and there was nothing else to it.
We mothers are weird like my boys say. I want them to be independent, I want them to have friends, because, these are going to be their lifelines when they grow older. The boys see us, surrounded by friends. I have a treasure trove of them and want the same for my boys too. That's a small thing to want. But then, why did I react the way I did? Because I convince myself that i'm just normal.
Took me back to my childhood when we would sulk, when the dish made for dinner was not to our 'exciting' standards. (The same food is my comfort food now). We would walk across to my neighbour's house and eat what she had cooked. It didn't hurt then. It hurts now. Now when I think of what we put our moms through. We are our mother's daughters.
I see the same rebellious spark in both my sons. I see the same emotions and the same 'groan'. They are my sons after all. At times, I am the paranoid parent. I can imagine all sorts of nonsense that can happen in their lives if i'm not around. I feel I am a superwoman who can prevent them if i'm around. I have my friends who hold me back. Who tell me to let go. I am learning. It hurts. It slowly dries up the tears that flow inside. And one day I see my boy standing tall, confident, happier and with that spark still in his eyes. I know I did the right thing.
Teenagers can be difficult. For themselves and for their parents. But inside they are just small lil boys waiting to be hugged and told that we still love them.
My mother was not an expressive lady, like most of them of that generation. She loved us nevertheless, in her own way and we knew it. In every single movement of hers. Each time I stand at the door to say a 'bye' to my older son as he steps out for his college, I know i'm carrying on a tradition that my mother followed, which then didn't mean much, but its in my bank of memories that I love. I know my son loves it too. And i'm hoping that one day both the boys will turn back and think of their childhood with as much love as I do.
My mother saw me through and i'm forever thankful.
I am 'the weird, crazy' mom to my 17 and 12 year old boys. I get angry and scream and sulk. I hug them and smother them with love too. But I let go too. I see them grow and I am proud of what they are.
I am a mother. These 2 boys gave me that right. And i'm forever thankful too.
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY TO EVERY MOTHER. And continue to be weird, that is our exclusive right :)