My Dear Mother,
One day a year doesn't really do any justice to the love and concern you put into this lifetime job - does it?
Today of all days, I'd like to acknowledge why I'm so grateful for you in my life. Over the years, I have grown to learn that mothering isn't as simple as giving birth - it's not even about feeding your child - what it's really about, is raising decent human beings. Mothers, if you think about it, are accountable for how this world becomes - and that to me seems like quite a hectic job.
You, my mother, have constantly gone out of your way to love and care for us, and singlehandedly raise two extremely stubborn, curious, rebellious, and adamant kids! I know there are days when you're frustrated with us and you snap 'When on Earth did I teach you to become like this?!' and in those moments...
The time you chose to have us, regardless of the opportunities and justified reasons you had not to, and yet you chose us. I guess you were hoping we would make life better… and I just hope that on most days, we still do.
The time you chose to stand up against patriarchy, and live your own life on your terms, when you didn't care about the misogynist family members and the ones lurking outside in our society. That's right, the people that don't pay our bills - I learnt while growing up that family is only family when they're there to love and support you, to fight with you, but to never, ever leave you - the one's that leave when you make mistakes were never family to begin with.
Against popular belief, the time you put yourself and your desires before us, because to be a good mother, you first need to be a good person. I cannot tell you how proud I am of you for being the woman you are. You are feisty, strong and yet so vulnerable. You fight for everything that you believe is right, and to grow up to that has been the most empowering feeling of all.
I am grateful that you had moments in your life where you decided that you were a woman, a woman with dreams and desires and ambitions - before you were a mother.
That mothers are seen as holy, sacred, self-sacrificing beings that will let go of their own identity in order to keep their family together?
Isn't that sacrifice what we are proud of? But should we be… proud of it?
Don't boys then grow up to want a wife like their mothers and girls grow up to become more like their mothers?
And if we are to live in a world with more equality, shouldn't we be raising our son's to say 'I want a partner like my mother, who stands up for herself regardless...'?
For living your life. For having dreams. For bending the rules. For saying No. For voicing yourself. For being proud of your struggles and never giving up on us. For never giving up on yourself. For all the times when people questioned your ways of nourishing - you did what you do best… you lived.
And while the world may think it's a school education and 3 meals a day and lot's of hugs that raise a child, I can tell them proudly that I grew up to a mother that set an example of the kind of human being I want to be in this world.
A mother that doesn't just reject our ideas and beliefs because the world would be against it, but you listen and you adapt when necessary. You tell me there's no need to get married just because it's what the world expects me to do, and there hasn't been one desire in my life that you've told me to kill.
You are my worst critique and my best friend. And I'd be lying if I said we don't fight like cats and dogs, but you have the ability to get through to me like nobody else in this world can because I don't think it's possible for me to love anyone the way I love you. 'When you have children, then you'll know' is what you're probably telling yourself in your head right now… rolling your eyes at my letter.
I want to teach my daughter to learn to empathise and dream big before I teach her to cook, and my son to cry his heart out, before he learns to kick.
If I could replicate you into a million, oh what a world it would be. Happy Mothers Day, Ma.