Mother’s Day and my Mum’s birthday fall very close to each other.
My Mum insists two presents because they are two different occasions. She will be fine with a luncheon or dinner outing to celebrate both days but presents…no compromise on that! Mother’s Day is Mother’s appreciation day and birthday is to celebrate her as an individual.
So, what have I given to my Mum for Mother’s Day all these? Various really. A gigantic box of chocolate…like seriously gigantic box of chocolate that could feed 5 pax and they will lie down like a sleeping Buddha after that, perfumes, flowers, decorative lights, jewellery and much more. Every year there was always something I could give her. But these few years it has been a challenge…maybe because I am not young anymore and I have outlived all the best presents I can give my mother within my affordability.
Maybe if I suddenly strike the lottery (wishful thinking as I don’t buy lottery in the first place), I would probably buy her an island, a diamond crusted Mercedez Benz, a private jet for her to have her breakfast, lunch and dinner in any part of the world, a gold shop for her at the Golden Souk for her to buy large ‘Jail-like’ fancy designed cuffs bracelets that she so loved and an unlimited expenditure on her credit card for shopping till she drops as her presents as a gift to celebrate her.
My Mum and every Mum out there deserves these things. Why? My Mother is an epitome of selfless sacrifice and a Hitler reincarnation at the same time. She is loving, caring and generous but definitely not nurturing. This is her Hitler side. She is very strict, a disciplinarian and a judge of the Court of House. She will slap you with the punishment when you do wrong…then becomes the Punisher (as in the movie Punisher) and after all the pains and aches of her punishments, she will come and soothe your wounded soul and pains with gentle words and a topical cream to nurse the wounds.
At that moment, you want to hate her and at the same time, you just want to embrace her. A typical classic of living life with salt and sugar. The vinegar? Don’t worry I haven’t come to that part yet. The vinegar in this is when she nurses you, she will say… “you know I love you and I only want the best for you. You have to be a better person than me so that you don’t have to suffer what I suffered”. There you go…your typical mother’s love. The emotional blackmail. I’m sure you can relate to this right? Come on, tell the truth!
Still, in spite she is the 3 in 1 personality of Florence Nightingale, Mother Theresa and Hitler, I love her to bits and pieces or to follow the current expressions trend “love her to the moon and back”. As a single parent, my Mum doesn’t deserve to be in that role. She had dreams, had ambitions, had her own aspirations and achievements that she wanted to achieve. She wanted to be one of the figures that is on Mount Rushmore if she could.
Anyway, why do I have to give her two presents? As a mother, she sacrificed a lot. Good thing I was an easy baby to be managed from birth until teenager (before I turned Jackel and Hyde) and the moment I hit 16 years old, that’s when she tightened her reigns on me. At 16 years old, I was a hottie and species from Mars starts to get attracted to me. So here comes my Mum, having an invincible checklist at hand started classifying my suitors. In her checklist, she has stamped of Mummy’s Specials, Approved, conditionally approved, KIV and reject. In a nutshell, none of my suitors made it to the conditionally approved. Why? She says.. study comes first. I must graduate and then the real checklist will come into force with less prejudice.
So, she always kept me on a tight leash and never let me go astray once at all until I graduated. As a single Mum, she slogged like Oshin (A Japanese drama), walking barefoot in the rain to the train station so that she can keep her only best pair of shoes to work safe from being wet, spoke to her old Skoda car every morning for it’s engine to start when she finally had a car to go to work, shared a packet of meal between us all 3 and only took two mouthful and said she was filled as well as going through sleepless nights thinking how to send her children to college and universities with only commissioned based income.
When she suffered from shingles, a broken arm and other minor health issues, she never rested. She persevered on without thinking of herself. That’s my Hitler Mum. She never gave up. Never let anything stopped her until she saw both of us don our graduation robes….and only then…only then she exhaled a breath of success.
The Mother Theresa side of my Mum was her never-ending concern about us in our daily living. She provided us maids and furnished our home with modern-state of the art and classic furniture that our home looked like a million-dollar mansion in a small town. She dressed us on boutique-like clothes and we slept in beds made for duke and duchess.
We travelled together to other countries and had our school money that would have made us look like millionaires at the age of 16 years old. She gave us the freedom to live our lives and learn things that she never had a chance to. We get to go out for parties and movies with our friends as a teenager. She trusted us. Her only condition is to do whatever we like but never put our family name to shame or she will bury us alive.
The Florence Nightingale side of my Mum is the fact that she is an excellent dancer and singer. She had the sweetest voice and knew how to sing with or without the music. Her tones were always in the right spot and she can sing songs from other languages too. Talking about language, she speaks 5 Chinese dialects better than a Chinese, English, Malay, Tamil and much more. She even plays the guitar and piano by ear.
To my Mother, you may be amongst the million mothers’ out there, but I can say that you are my one and only one-in-a-million Mother in this lifetime. I am privileged to have a talented, amazing, extra-ordinary and out of this world Mum as my own.
I am what I am today because of my Florence Nightingale, Mother Theresa and Hitler 3 in 1 Mother.