Mother’s day and my birthday always fall within the same week. As I touch 51 this year it’s also a reminder of the most challenging and incredible role I’ve had to play as a mother, single mother, nurturer, provider, good cop, bad cop and guide to my two wonderful children.
When I look back at both of them, now 23 and 21 years old, I see a road chequered with so many memories and every love infused card on my bed, every birthday, every holiday, every pillow fight, every adventure, every evening spent rolling in laughter, or cuddled under blankets watching movies together comes to life.
Even the fights over the years bring a smile to my face. They were important fights, important arguments, because they didn’t only shape the children, they shaped me as well. Every experience is a learning one. We learn from our good times what we have done right to be there, and we develop in times of stress and conflict our inner strength, our focus, our identity and our capacity to create change that will lead to happier times.
Our whole lives are essentially spent in the pursuit of happiness, but very few actually have the ability to see joy in every day. There’s always a reason to be happy, and always a reason to be unhappy. You choose which one has the strength to overpower your day. The interesting thing is your choices define your reality. Fake optimism isn’t what I’m talking about, which is when you “pretend” to be positive in the hope that it will make people see you differently or that it will negate the negative.
I am talking about a deep knowing. When you are fully aware of all the positives and possibilities that surround you and accept the negatives as given obstacles you must endure and overcome. Keeping a positive hat on doesn’t mean delusion. It means that your optimism will guide you through the crisis and to be able to emerge stronger, wiser and empowered as a result of it.
My life has definitely had it’s fair share of crisis as a woman, a daughter, a mother, a citizen, a family member, a friend, a working professional, a single parent, a lover, a girlfriend, a wife, an ex-wife and more…! A large part of who I am today is because of my role as a mother and daughter. It’s given me the courage, the push, the focus, the discipline and the happiness quotient to take my life from strength to strength at every obstacle.
I look back at 51 years of my life and say “Wow! What a journey”, and I look forward and say, “can’t wait to see what life has up it’s sleeve for me to experience and enjoy and shape me even more”. It’s a short journey on this amazing planet, fill it with dreams and vision and passion and positivity. What you vibrate at is what you attract. Thank you to the universe for my role as a mom, and a big thank you on mothers day to my mother, who was simply an incredible one!
1. I am a 28-year-old woman and have been working from home since the past one year. Since I live in a joint family, it has not been easy to manage household chores and work. I am contemplating quitting my job because I can’t deal with the constant taunts of family members, who claim I am not giving enough attention to my duties at home. However, I am also aware that these are uncertain times and a loss of income won’t be easy to deal with. What should I do?
Their taunts are their limitations and do not have to become yours. You should have a joint meeting with all family members and respectfully put forward your need to work, the hours involved and the need for time to rest as well. Ask their help to put in order a work schedule with all timings considered and to map out what they would expect from you in any free time allocated. Add that if every family member had time and responsibility charts neatly in place then it would make for a much happier home, because the intent is to love and care and share responsibilities while also being sensitive and encouraging. End with saying this is temporary and that the moment WFH turns back into office life, all these issues will be put to rest.
2. I am a 42-year-old man. I recently found out that my wife cheated on me some time ago and now, she is seeking forgiveness. I am finding it difficult to forget what she did. At the same time, my old friend from college has reconnected with me after many years. We have been chatting a lot these days and I’m finding myself falling for her. Before things get even more complicated, I want to know whether I should stop talking to her and mend my relationship with my wife or separate from her. Please help.
Two wrongs don’t make a right. First address the issue with your wife and seek professional help if needed in order to have a reconciliation because there many decades invested and possibly children involved. Just know a new relationship is no guarantee of long term happiness or loyalty either. Always see the bigger picture and work towards it. If your wife is definitely not in your bigger picture, then let her know it and take future decisions with full responsibility.
3. I am a single mother of two teenage daughters. I have started liking my neighbour, who moved into our building last year. I think he likes me, too, but we haven’t shared our feelings with each other. I don’t know whether I should take things ahead because I’m apprehensive about how my family will react. Please help.
Why would anyone in your family who loves you want you to be lonely and without love or sex? Any well-wisher would want you to be happy and loved. If it’s about “societal conditioning”, well, times are changing, and many are taking their lives forward and finding love and happiness. Start a healthy friendship with him and make the family comfortable with him as a friend first and also gauge his dynamic with the kids. Teenage years are definitely volatile so handle your behaviour in front of them. Keep it happy, friendly, easy. Let them warm up to the idea and make others close to them point out to them that the happier you are, the happier you will automatically make their lives and home as well.
Views expressed above are the author’s own.
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