Saturday, May 11, 2013

Of Mothers and Sons

I cried. In the doctors clinic and then sitting on a bench on Orchard Road. In the middle of Singapore's bustling shopping street. I cried. Actually I bawled. Reason was that the gynae had just informed me that I was going to have a boy.

A boy?! What was I supposed to do with a BOY? I could hear my dreams being smashed like glass that cracks when a rock is thrown at it. Dreams of ribbons and laces. Or reading Enid Blyton novels under the afternoon sun in a park. Of playing dress up. Of having a room full of Barbie dolls. Or sharing secrets over the kitchen counter. And watching old episodes of 'Gilmore Girls' together. Of doll houses and tutus. It was all over now!

I know. All one should ever hope for is a healthy baby. I was VERY grateful that I was going to be a mum. I wanted to be one since I was 18. This was happening 10 years too late. So I was extremely thrilled and immensely excited. But I would be lying if I don't say that I was disappointed too.

However nothing could have prepared me for what would happen when I held Sanil in my arms for the first time. There is a gush of love that you never knew you could feel for any one individual. There was feeling of intense protectiveness. I will never ever let anything happen to my little baby. I will shield him from every pain, every hurt. And in a few days I had to take him for his first vaccination and I cried. He didn't. But I did. The doctor looked at me and sympathetically said 'If you cry every time, he cries, you won't last very long'. I though b%^&% in my head but smiled politely.

Now am sure every mum feels like that about their newborn. However as time progressed I realized that a bond that a mother shares with her son, is totally something else. I once read somewhere 'Being a mother to a son is like being the only star in your very own Hollywood production'. You are the be-all-and-end-all of his existence. At least till the girlfriends start circling like vultures. Ok. I know I am being nasty, but I can't imagine myself actually liking any of his girlfriends. And I digress...

There is still time for that...for now I want to only think of him as my baby.

When he was 3 months old I started work again. I came home in the evenings and held him in my arms to feed him, he would hold my finger so tightly. Like he would never let go of me.

He used to sleep in his cot in our room. He never cried when he woke up. But I knew his routine. So I used to wake up at 7 am and look over his cot. And there was the most beaming smile I could ever receive from anyone. He would raise his arms and I scooped him up and gave him a tight hug.
Since he could talk, he told me everything. And I mean everything. Every small minute detail that happened in the day. When he started with 'Mama you know what' or 'Mama I have to tell you something', I knew long stories with dramatic expressions would fill the next 10 minutes. I listened patiently. I never wanted to story to end.

Boys are boys. They are boisterous, loud and sometimes obnoxious. They prefer soccer to books and 'Iron Man' to 'Little Women'. They don't see anything wrong in being dirty or muddy. And can't fathom what's the big fuss about clean floors.

They look up to their dads , their uncles, their grand-dads and want to be the 'man'. However they become little babies with the mamas. Mamas who cuddle them, wipe their tears and nurse the bruised knees. Also the same mamas who push them to their potential. Who steer them when they seem to lose their way. Who know commanding won't get you anywhere. But minor cajoling will. Who encourage their passions. And help them overcome their shortcomings. Who are honest yet loving. Truthful yet caring. I am so not one of the mum who believes her son can do no wrong. In fact sometimes I feel I am harsher than necessary. I can't raise a delusional child who thinks he's always right. I can only encourage him constantly to be the best he can be.

Mums are the only ones who boys are truly vulnerable with. They open their hearts and share their souls.

When they are rude, you know they are actually scared

When they are grinning, you know they have done something naughty

When they are concentrating, you know it's really important

When they are angry, you know they are actually sad

When they are annoyed, you know they are actually disappointed

And you learn this very quickly. So you adapt your reaction to the real emotion behind the mask.

It's an unending bond. That becomes looser when they approach their tweens. They become more sullen, more uncommunicative and sometimes aloof. Their eyes are glued to cricket and fingers are busy with the iPad. Their friends become the centre of their existence.

And just when you worry that you have lost them, they give you a tight hug out of nowhere and beg you to play UNO with them.

You just have to be there. Sometimes be content to watch from the sidelines. And wait. Patiently. Because they will come back to you. May be not as often as when they were 5. But they will. And get interested in what interests them. Even if it means watching reruns of IPL and hearing stories about soccer goals till your head hurts. Or even learning the ridiculous Gangnam Style...and enjoying it

It is an eternal bond. It never breaks. And when it gets loose, let go, instead of holding on.

I don't know if I am successfully doing it, but am sure hell trying.

Happy Mothers Day!

'All I needed to do to find the perfect man, was to give birth to one' Miranda Hobbes Sex and the City

My newborn baby! At the naming ceremony
At B-Ita's Wedding. All of 11 months

Big Brother to Little Myrah

1 comment:

  1. as a mother to two adorable boys, i can relate !! Beautifully put.