[This article was first published on May 14, 2017, in celebration of Mother’s Day]
Dear A and A,
Through the daily rigmarole of the mundane, Mother’s Day tends to pull us out of our reverie and makes us focus all our energies onto this one day and what it may mean for me and you. At every inch of your growing up, I tend to reflect on my own childhood and try and take lessons from the same. Some of them are worldly wise, and some not so much. The ones that have stuck by me, for eternity might I add, are the ones that are subconsciously passed down to you- be it about hygiene, discipline, routine, or just basic social etiquettes, and I hope they stick with you after its been repeatedly screamed down as a volley to you both. “Keep the brush in the brush holder,” “scrape the bathroom floor after bathing”; “say your thank-yous and excuse me’s,” “go to bed, it is eight PM,” so on and so forth.
The rest of the life lessons are trickier, albeit rather important for me to pass them down, and one’s that I hope get ingrained in you and slowly seep into your blood becoming a part of who you are and what you stand for. Despite wanting two girls, I am so glad I got you my sweet little boy for it made me see things with a different perspective. I hope I am able to raise you both with lesser sexism, lesser misogyny, lesser discrimination, and with more love and tolerance towards gender, race and the unexpected. I can safely say your birth has made me want to be a better person, a better guide, a more conscientious person and a more courageous mom. It is no wonder they say not to mess with a mother. As much as you both have softened me, your existence has toughened me too.
And I hope that I can arm you with all the life skills and fortify your belief system to be able to contribute and act with just in this society of ours. I wish we get to that point in life where love will be enough, but today’s world scares me and I hope that fear doesn’t influence the way I teach and become a role model for you. So, this scared but hopeful mom wants a lot of things for you. Things that make you happy, healthy and independent, and also a constant wish that you don’t turn out to be jerks in the making.
These are some of the things I expect you both to learn by the time you leave your nest:
I am glad I had one of each. My daughter, my joy and pride and my son, my strength and heart. I see hope in you both - hope for a better world than what we live in today.