We all love our moms for numerous reasons. For different reasons. And for more than one reason. Not everyone documents it and I haven’t either. At least, all these years. This year is a little different and I wish the rest of the years are consistent with this one.
It’s been several years since I lived in the home I grew up in. That was more or less half my life ago. For the majority of the last couple of decades, my mom has primarily been a phone pal. I try to call her almost everyday and the days I don’t, she calls. For that matter, she calls even on the days I call her. And for that matter, I call her more than once even on the days that she calls. Or I call. You get the picture by now, don’t you?
What do we discuss? World Politics? No. Macroeconomics? No. Microeconomics? No. STEM? No. Anything remotely worthwhile? Absolutely not! And that’s exactly what I enjoy about the conversations which, more often than not, turns into a debate. While both my mom and enjoy debating, I am afraid she isn’t nearly as good as I am 🙂 And even if you consider that I am mediocre, believe me when I say that she is worse than I. She conveniently switches topics when she is close to being on the losing side! However, I enjoy those meaningless debates. All the time.
We all cherish some things a whole lot more than others and needless to mention, the things that are worth cherishing cannot be bought. Because, they aren’t sold. Because, money cannot simply buy them. Because, money can only buy meaningless, materialistic things. When I think of my mom, I think of many things – some more so than others.
I went to college about 1500 miles from home, not to mention almost 2 decades ago and in a remote part of India that didn’t have too much access. At least, not the comfortable one. You had to take a train and sit in it for almost 2 days and then, hop into a bus for about 2 hours that took you to a ridiculously old and poorly maintained station where we boarded another one. That took about 6 hours and then, you had to take a bus again for about an hour. Something along these lines. If you are like me who hates any and all kinds of travel, let alone the most uncomfortable ones, you will see what this really means. The fact that hundreds of other fellow classmates took the same train didn’t make it any more exciting for me. You couldn’t book train tickets online then and you had to rush to a building in the wee hours of the morning to ensure you had a reservation particularly if you wanted to be in an air-conditioned car as there were only a handful of seats in those cars (compared to the other cars that didn’t do anything to keep you cool and guard you from the unbearable heat). My mom went there in the wee hours, stood in the long lines patiently and ensured I got a confirmed ticket – every single time for 5 years. Not because it was reasonable for her son to expect that. Not because any other parent did that (most of them didn’t). Not because it was justifiable by any stretch of the imagination. But simply because – her son wanted it and wouldn’t have been happy otherwise.
As an immigrant, I miss many things but I dearly miss the Indian festivals and the festivities that go along with it. I can’t remember the last time I was back home for a Deepavali or a Pongal. My mom plays a significant role here as well. She has been sending me video clips (well before the age of smart phones and iPads), audio clips and goodies to keep me well connected with what’s going on and more importantly, ensuring that I didn’t miss the general feeling. While there is never going to be a fair replacement to actually being there physically during those celebrations, I have to admit that my mom does her very best to keep me engaged.
Of all the important and significant years in my life, there is none other than the year 2000. This is when my son was born. If only I had any idea about the happiness associated with being a parent, I would’ve had a child when I was 10! And if the almighty gave me a chance to go back and have a child of my choosing, I would choose my son over anyone else. Every single time. Now, you may ask what my mom has to do with this part of the post. She surely does. Being a mom, she quickly realized what had become more important to me and by a distance. So, she tried to learn more about my son and more about what I liked to do for my son and the rest, you can probably infer. And I don’t have to state how hard it is to do all of this remotely despite what Apple’s consistent offerings bring to the table.
It is easy to be nice to someone if you think they can come of some use to you at some point of time. We all run into such people all the time. But, luckily, the world has a number of people who are willing to go the extra mile to help you even when they know they don’t quite stand to gain anything from their actions. And I think that’s what makes the world a beautiful place. And that’s what makes life a blessing. If I have any more births, I know who I exactly want for my mom. If I can be half as good a parent as my mom, I would have done well.
As a finishing sentence, I will say that I’ve come to know another mom who I’ve been blessed to know as well. In the interest of not sharing the laurels, I’ll save that discussion for another day.