Today is Mother’s Day in the United States. For the first time ever as a mom I am neither with any of my children or with my own mom. I have hungrily devoured messages, emails, and phone calls that are filled with love and words of affirmation of this amazing and difficult task called ‘being a mom’. In honor of my own mom, who I am fortunate enough to still have on this planet, I post this piece that I wrote a number of years ago.
To My Mom
I remember sleeping on the rooftop of our house in Ratodero. We would wake at dawn when we heard the call to prayer from the nearby mosque and despite your maternal pleadings, we couldn’t go back to sleep.
I remember being tucked into bed at night, you would read me a story, kiss me, and then sit by my bedside and sing. It’s what I missed the most in boarding school.
I remember that first trip on the train party. In my memory I had just turned seven years old and we were in Hyderabad. I cried tears from my soul the entire way to the station. As the train pulled out, I stopped crying and you began. I never saw your tears and it wasn’t until later that I heard about them.
I remember you never let anyone call me chubby, even when I was.
I remember our fights. Stone-faced cold I could be to my mother. And I think I may have been the child that could bring on your fiery temper better than the others. I remember your forgiveness. Sometimes I think we both thought the fights would continue forever, but we were wrong.
I remember the picture you hung on our wall, a snow scene of New England, reminder of your home so far away from the desert of Sindh. It wasn’t until I became an adult that I realized that there must have been times when you missed your home so much that it hurt.
I remember seeing you every morning. No matter how early I got up, you were up earlier, praying and reading your Bible, strength of your soul.
I remember your presence in the first couple of weeks of me becoming a mom. Your common sense wisdom was a gift.
And I remember the first time I realize that you were aging. I fought it. Because if you were aging it meant there would come one day when you would no longer be available to talk to and ask questions of; to pray for me, my marriage, my children.
But you are still here and still speak into my life. So today I remember that I want to Thank You publicly and privately, from my heart.
Happy Mother’s Day. On this day it’s good to remember.