Picture a young woman holding her baby, her first, for the first time. She wears on her face happiness, exhaustion and confusion. Hopefully, she’s happy to be a mother. She’s relieved at last of all the weight she has carried in her body for nine months. She sees a future for this child already. May be, she sees new beginnings: A happy husband and respect from society. Or may be, she sees no future; not for her, not for her child because she wasn’t prepared for motherhood when she got pregnant or the father of her baby has fallen in battle, or eloped with another woman long ago, or is a rapist or someone of a lower social class and therefore cannot be named.
When a woman is inducted into motherhood; especially for the first time, whether under good or terrible circumstances, it always hits her like a train. All of a sudden, she finds the curtain raised and a billion faces staring at her, waiting for her to perform, and it hits her that this is quite different from the role she’d rehearsed for.
I have watched my wife become a mother thrice. I have watched her evolve from a cool, top class university student who had her life together and her future intact , into a lovely bride giggling around like a little girl who just discovered lollipop, into a ranting lunatic trying to get two older children ready for school whilst her baby screams for attention. I have watched this girl who enjoyed sleep like it was made of dope, go for days without a dose because one of her children was sick or a new baby wakes up every few minutes to be breastfed.
And one would think the whole world will excuse her because she’s a mother and obviously has no time for herself, but no. Her husband also has several needs, most of which only she can meet; and then there is career and that corporate ladder thingy, and several other social pedestals she must get on to be counted.
Saying Happy Mother’s Day to our mothers and the mothers of our children isn’t much against the sacrifices they make, but definitely a step in the right direction. Happy Mother’s Day