Updated: Aug 20, 2019
If Daddy was our first Superhero, Mummy was our Superwoman! Earliest memories are a bit sketchy except that she had taken a break from work to bring up her three daughters.
She was from a large family of eight sisters and one brother. Being a diligent and good student, she was one the first girls from her village to graduate and then also complete her PG.
Having lost her father while in college and getting married to an Army officer, her life changed dramatically. From a simple village girl, she transformed into someone who could hold her own in a group of total strangers. She wasn't very fluent in English or Hindi but she could have a decent conversation with others!
Always being taught to speak her mind by her father, mummy learnt to be tactful while being an Army wife. Everytime she went to the village her friends and family would crowd around to hear her experiences of living in different states all over India, living in bunkers and life as an Army wife.
I remember her as this really chilled out mom, who would let us wear her best Sarees and even hide in her cupboard during 'hide n seek'! But we dare not fuss about the food at mealtimes! I was a fussy eater and a naughty child (hard to believe, right!). Both Daddy and mummy were strict at the dining table! Well, I am the same with my daughters!
Mummy got back to working in earnest when I was 12 years old. When Daddy went to Field we stayed with her in Guwahati in a rented accommodation. Those few years brought us really close to Mummy. She was teaching in a govt school which was an hour away and after school she would oversee the construction of our house. She left home by 7 am and got back by 7 pm! Those were difficult times but we pulled through!
Mummy was never a great cook. She had a very simple upbringing and had learnt a lot while interacting with other Army wives. What is remarkable is that she managed to retain her simplicity in that strange and overwhelming environment. She was an epitome of strength and courage ,always inspiring me in my growing years. She treated me like an adult and we were more like friends. I could talk about my "crushes" (there was a new one every few weeks!) and she would share her experiences with me . The bond grew stronger when I went to hostel. Marriage and motherhood taught me and made me understand my mother better. My love and respect for her as an individual, as a woman, a parent has only increased with time.
Daddy's passing away hit her hard. But she still smiles when I speak to her every morning because she doesn't want me to worry about her....
She isn't perfect in any way but she is my superwoman! She taught me to trust and respect my children as individuals. She taught me to be friends with my daughters and love them, no matter what!
Mummy, I consider myself lucky to be your daughter...