When you can’t be who you want to be
My husband is out of station for two weeks and I am alone to attend to my daughter. Work at office had to become heavier exactly at this time! So, it has become bit stressful to get my daughter ready for her school, drop her there and then pick her up in the evening. There were two times when I had to request my friend and then, her teacher to take her to their home because I would be getting away from work late. The consequence? I was stressed. As soon as I was with her, she became cranky and nagging. Thinking back, I guess she was seeking my attention because she missed me. But at that time, I was impatient and I lost my temper faster than my usual self. And the consequence was that, everyday I had to spank her (but readers, be gentle with me here. I don’t spank her with the intensity to hurt her). It is just a little spank on her bank or bottom, just to show that I am upset.
I want to be a good mother. And yes, I want to be a good daughter too. And what is more? I want to be a sincere civil servant. So, I’m stretched in between the desire to fulfill all these expectations. Lately, I have come to realize that maybe my problem is that I want to be the best for everyone. I don’t want to be branded as ‘bad’, as in not fitting the norms and expectations of the society. After a while it starts to feel too heavy a weight on me.
People I know tell me that I am the most patient mother they have come across. Is it true? I don’t know. I want to be the best mother and I try to be, but I feel I fail despite all that.
Take for example last evening. I had requested her madam to take her to her house. When I finally got home there at 7 p.m. from office, she got so irritable that she didn’t want to get in the car. She started throwing her hands on to me, kicking my bag and pulling away from the car with all her strength. No coaxing worked and I had to spank her. We got home tired – both of us feeling so drained. I was even angry with my mother for not having taken the door key and thus having to wait for us. I felt like the pent up emotions were engulfing me. I cried too.
Later when both of us were calmed down, I asked my mother what it was like for her. Her answer? She never felt so exhausted and tired. Giving birth to eight children wasn’t even a struggle. My problem is like a speck of dust compared to what she went through. Raising seven children in the times when there was no school, no education, no electricity and road, and no shops nearby. I can only imagine what it was like to wake up everyday to the farmer’s life of drudgery – and yet, to have not a single complaint. She is the most grateful person I have known. I see it in her eyes, in her everyday gesture. Surely it is a consolation for me.
When I say all this, I don’t mean that I feel ungrateful towards life. Neither am I a pessimistic person in general. I cannot attribute yesterday’s tiredness to anything really. I probably went zig-zag because of some hormonal change. But isn’t that a bit too early? I just hope it doesn’t come back again. Today, I am determined to be my usual self – the gentle and compassionate mother, and caring and doting daughter. I hope I live up to this wish till my husband returns.
Motherhood is a blessing. And with it comes many more tests. I want to pass each one and yet, I already feel like I am failing.