Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mothers Day!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mommies. My cousin sister in Bangalore called us up to wish my Mom and her sisters all of who are here for another Engagement. She made her little daughter wish me. It was so cute to hear her say "Happy Mothers Day chechi". I am her regular babysitter you see and it was very sweet of my cuz sis to do that. Before my cuz sis could put the receiver down I heard her daughter ask her why she should wish me for Mothers Day as I am not a mommy. That question bought a flood of memories and I am dedicating this post to a special person in my life, who was like a second mother to me throughout my growing years. And this person is my mom’s youngest sister Ann.

Ann is nearly 12 years younger to my mom and was ( and still is) a breathtaking beauty. All the girls in the family were famed for their beauty but Ann was the best. Poor thing was also born into an ultra orthodox Syrian Catholic family, which means she was berated if a guy even looked in her direction. She grew up never appreciating her own beauty and always felt it was her fault because someone made a remark about her good looks. Such remarks were construed as shameful and she would get a scolding. Good Syrian Catholic girls did not attract undue attention to themselves according to norms in those days.

Inspite of having the ‘handicap’ of being extremely beautiful, she was a happy go lucky gal, who was absolutely crazy about me. For Dassara and Christmas holidays, she would insist that I be sent to Kerala and I remember flying as an Unaccompanied Minor with Indian Airlines. (We get about 10 days for Dassara and X'mas)The joy of seeing her face among the sea of people waiting at the airport is indescribable. She would lift me up and refuse to put me down and then I was her daughter for the duration of the stay. She would jealously refuse even my Ammachi from taking me to church, or the chandha, the farmers market which I loved to attend. Neither would she leave my side for a minute.

People would tease her saying that now that I am home, Ann will ignore everybody or they would say “wait till she goes back, then you will have to talk to us”. She is a gifted artist and wrote small articles for Femina in the 70’s. On the insistence of my Mom and her other sister’s, my grandparents let her complete her MA. They were afraid to keep a beautiful daughter unwed at home for too long.

For her wedding I threw a tantrum and hated her husband at sight. I didn’t understand why she had to go away with some strange man . And my uncle understood my hostility and promised me at the reception that he would take good care of her. It took me many months to get over the hostility and talk to him. But he kept his promise and is a wonderful husband and Uncle to me. He is also my favorite Uncle because he is a birder like me and we have been to many expeditions together. Today he is taking me to a place where he has seen some rare birds. Their greatest regret…that they have only sons and no daughter. A fact that saddens her to this day. Sometimes she sighs and says, maybe it was her greed for a daughter that made God punish her.

If she did have a daughter then that little girl would have been the luckiest girl in the whole world to have her as a mother.

19 comments:

Alexis Leon said...

Touching and moving... Happy mother's day to all mothers at home. And a special one to your 'second mother'. I am sure that she still consider you as her daughter :-)

silverine said...

@Alexis: She still does, she never stopped considering me her daughter and till date my Mom has rarely bought clothes for me, for that is her department. Besides she thinks she has better taste in clothes ( which is true) lol

Dr. Pissed said...

I think your life is beyond colorful.
Its spelendid to have something so rich and to enjoy it completely.

Cheers to you and a very happy mother's day to "both" your moms.

silverine said...

@dr pissed: Every mallu who has grown up in Kerala or spent some time has had a rich life. You will see it on mallu blogs, the frequent walks through memory lanes. Just check this out! It describes the life of the ordinary Malayalees like us. For us Kerala is the wonderland we escaped to during holidays and left with heavy hearts. We still dream of going back, if political and economical conditions permit. We are a State of migrants, because we never had the opportunity within the State. But we all have the collective dream of going back for good one day.

Harjee Kapur said...

wow.
what an awesome story of love.
you're much blessed to have an aunt like your aunt ann.
the wonderful human being she is, is so clear and evident that even god had to give her an awesome husband...
:-)
i have been to kerala only one and a half times but want to go there again...last time i went there i was introduced to toddy.
besides a sudden rise in my deo and water consumption, it was a great experience....
kerala and its people remind me so much of punjab... maybe will wite a post about it when i visit kerala again....

give my regards to your aunt ann you lucky girl...

cheers

calvin said...

Touching post :D

I consider everyday as my Mothers' day. I used to think that I grew up without being influenced in any way by by her. As a child and teenager I never much appreciated her qualities .I used to look up to other idols.

Later on , after I completed my degree and stepped into the 'real wolrd' , I realized how brave and how caring she is . Now I make it a point to hug her at least once a day coz that makes her happy. One day she was feeling real low and when Ihugged her , she cried a bit and became well again . I donno what I would have been without my Mom. I have a lot to make up for those days when I kept her away with my anger .

Immigrant in Canada said...

wow.. do you know how lucky u r?.. In my life I have seen my aunt less than 5 times!

Jiby said...

yo...i just read mind curry's mother's day tribute, was real touched and then i came over to your thinkpad and got to read of another wonderful woman and mother. am reminded of several women who cared for me when i was young...now in their old age...i always wonder whether i am doing enuf for all the love and affection bestowed.

silverine said...

@harjee: Thank you :) She is a wonderful person and I realised that I took that for granted till now. I think rural areas are the same everyhwere whether Punjab or Kerala.The people are simple, innocent and earthy :) Do visit in December when it is slightly cooler.
@Aashik: Apart from the commercialisation of Mother' Day it does make you stop and ponder about mom's and their selflessness. I am sure your mom took your anger in her stride. They are made that way :)
@IIC: Yes, I am really lucky to have her as my aunt. My other aunts i.e my Dad's sis in laws are also adorable.
@Jiby: Thank god for these wonderul women in our lives! And thank god for the wonderful times and warm memories that we associate with them.

stan_da_man said...

wow..that was sucha sweet post. Makes me feel bad that I forgot to wish my mom yesterday cos I 4got it was Mother's day!! Hmmm..will wish her today..and being the sweet mom she is, i'm sure she'll understand.

Thanu said...

I'm also very close with my mother's sisters. Dad sisters I'm not that close.

Everytime I visit them its like they are just a extension of my mother.

Harjee Kapur said...

for a hard core mallu kutty you must read tonys' new post.
Hardcore mull, my ex boss and yes, rated by many bigwigs in the Indian advertising industry as the best coywriter in India...

The link is

http://lawrencetony.blogspot.com

quills said...

Hey! Nice post. :)

Hope your mom and your fav aunt had a wonderful Mother's day as well. I am sure they did, with you as their daughter and niece respectively. :)

Matter of Choice said...

really enjoyed this one...very beautiful emotions..the same story repeated in my life too..am so much more attached to my mom's elder sister who is almost like my grandmom..

Mind Curry said...

hello silv :) hope you had an awesome time with your mom and aunt on mothers day. wishing you years of joy together. i am sure your aunt is lucky to have a niece like you.

Enigma said...

:)

Dhanush said...

Nice Post Siverine. Brought back memories of my stay at my mom's place. I was there for 2 years and it was my chitta who took care of me in that young age.
Somehow there always is a person in everone's life who will be giving him/her a mom's love.

BTW - I liked your comment to dr.pissed. Very touching. Even though my emigration from Home will touch only three years this June, it is in me to always go back and settle there. May be I will..

silverine said...

@Stan: Hope you wished her finally. And they always forgive no matter what :)
@Thanu: My Dad doesn't have sisters but his sis-in-laws are just like his sisters. Very sweet. And mom's sisters are alway extensions of your Mom :)
@Harjee: Thanks for the link :)
@Quils: Thanks, hope you too had the chance to wish your Mom :)
@MoC: That is so sweet. She must have been a wonderful lady to love someone like you LOL (just kidding)I am attached to my aunt but not as much as to my mom. By the end of the hols, I was impatient to see my mom, something my aunt never understood why till she became a mom :))
@MC: Thank you. You did a great job of acknowledging your mom with that Mother's Day post!!!
@Enigma: :)
@dhanush:You are so right. We all have that special someone in our lives who steps in like another parent :) Your chitta must have spoilt you rotten like my aunt would :)And my comment to dr pissed was something I have repeated to scores of non mallu freinds who would envy us mallu kids when we got back from vacations. We talked to catching fish in the creek and climbing mountains or boating while they would have gone for a brief holiday somewhere and gotten back to summer camp in Bangalore. We are indeed blessed to have that special place called Kerala, to go to during vacations :)

Dhanush said...

Hey, I have taken this quote of yours to me and put it on my blog. Hope you don't mind