I believe most people will find it so easy to write a lovely note about their Mother. Those notes will be filled with so many beautiful words of how angelic a Mom can be, and I will agree with all those notes. No drama in really adoring and grateful for your Mom. But for me, thinking and speaking about my Mom, I always has this urge to be real. Honestly, as a mother she has so many flaws – take it from me, her daughter. I spent most of my adolescence life hating my Mom and everything she said about or to me, the way she treated me, even everything she wish for me.
Mom and I are so look alike. Everyone can tell that I am her daughter in a single glance. And according to my Dad, not only our look but we also have “almost” the same personality and character. Everytime Dad disagree with my behavior he will slip this sentence between his argument: “you’re just like your Mom!”. Well, that of course refer to her bad attitude, need not to guess. So yeah, bottom line I’m her descendant that took almost all of her genetic profile. And back to my adolescence life I wasn’t sure whether I should be proud of that or take it as pure tragedy.
Somehow I believe that being almost identical genetically cause more problem in our relationship instead agreement and understanding. You know, the feeling of “I know her too well, she know me too well” that lead to instantly disagreeing upon whatever each other say. Mom and I fought a lot back then. She seemed never satisfied with what I’ve become and the way I presenting myself most of the time. Yes, she praised us every now and then but the praise seemed blur among the critics and high expectation she kept reciting since we (my siblings and I) were a little kids.
In the middle of road as family, we were starting to get to know each other a little better. I believe that this all has got to do with our effort to be more spiritual not as family but each of the family member took a personal decision to do so. And me, I was starting to try to know my Mom better, to really see her as person, not only a Mom, especially comparing to my ideal picture of a Mom should be.
In her youth Mom always being the center of attention, she’s the oldest of 7 siblings, she’s pretty, she’s really talented, out-going/chatty, smart, drive her own car, rebellious, pretty much all the things that a young girl wants in life. But according to her, she had unique parents (my grandparent of course) that made her who she is now. Her dad were the cold one, man with very few words, and her mom was really busy with taking care 7 kids, a boarding house, and being a member of many organizations. She grew up on her own, do whatever she wanted to do. She even start smoking in junior high school.
One of the stories about her that I remember the most is when she wanted to tell her Dad her choice of major in university. She wanted to go to art faculty instead of economy. She knew so well that her “professor doctor” father wouldn’t agree. My mom rehearsed like hundred times in front of the mirror in her room. She was so scared that she’s crying when she’s rehearsing and after hundreds time rain check on the timing to tell her father. She was finally had the boldness to talk when her father reading paper one afternoon. She was cut on the first sentence, end up with her crying and went back to her room. So much for conversation that you rehearse hundred times eh? And yes, stubborn like me, she finally studied Art at ITB, Bandung.
She once told me that her Mom never pay a particular attention to whatever she is doing (at that time) or did and done, or her achievements in her life. Her Mom never told her what to do as a girl, a woman or even a Mom. My Mom love her Mom of course, but she said to me, she secretly wish that her Mom would tell her things that she should do and answer all her adolescence questions about life. There were times when she’s so clueless and did wrong things. Her mom never confronted her for anything!
My mom, she was very popular in the youth circle in Bandung at that time, drive her own car, miniskirt, doing modeling, go for pageant contest, smoking and has a really nice booty (is it polite to say that about your mom?). She’s in a rock band since she can sing and play piano. She’s travelling to Bali alone for a month. She has many boyfriends. She’s a dreamer, big dreamer. Then she met my Dad in age 24, they were falling in love and took only 3 months for them from shaking hands for the first time to walking the isle. Pretty cool huh?
Unfortunately, as much as Mom & Dad loves each other they fight a lot too. Most of the reasons was because of her big dream and expectations, expectation turn to demand, and unfulfilled demand turn to anger perhaps rage. Still, I had a really really cool childhood since both of my parents were adventurous and – perhaps – clueless at that time. We were moving a lot even to the middle of the jungle for 6 month (this is the story that I post about it). But seeing your parents yelling at each other a lot, it was really torturing when you’re just a little kid, but then…
To know, to think, to reminisce about my Mom and her personality, to analyzed our similarity, to see her smile, to really know about what make her really happy and really sad… must I say I have the most interesting Mom on this face of earth. She has the most unique personalities I’ve ever met in this life and hard to find someone else on her level. And I found out that everything that she is and she did or do, there’s always a reason behind it, I always have something that I can learn about, especially on how I should behave and think.
You see, yes, Mom criticize us but she never be little our dreams. She always the first and loudest person who’s clapping hands every time we’re done doing our performance. Yes, she might seemed disappointed sometimes, but I found out it all because she is blaming herself for not able to provide the best for us, according to her. She wants us the be the best in everything. She sew the cutest dresses when we were little, so cute (and colorful) that we were stand out among any kids crowd that time. She cook only the best food and bought only the best stuff. Then I know, that was causing her and Dad fight a lot. She wanted more and more for us and demands that to my Dad to provide more and more money. How many times I heard about how much she regret it that she couldn’t afford to send us study aboard. She wants to say so many sweet and nice words to us, but she confuse on how to start because her parents never teach her how, she was proud of us but instead it sounded like a demand. Her frustration manifest in so many ways that seem wrong but that’s how she’s holding up. Along the time, I figure that she never stop learning and evolving. She always wants to know how to improve things, until now.
Now I can say, I have the most beautiful Mom of Lolo can have.
So if your take out from having an imperfect mother is hatred and rage, I would say that you are the most unlucky person on earth. No mom is perfect, no use to take into account of how imperfect a mom is. Cuz no matter what she do in her life, for themselves, for you as her children, it will reflect on your life too. You just have to accept that and learn and be happy. Mom teaches me a lot about life more than what she spoke in words. She teaches me about true acceptance of your spouse. She teaches me to hang on no matter how sucks life is, and maybe life doesn’t go with your childhood dream, your expectation. Her life teaches me so much about Carpe Diem. And most of all about a Mom’s love itself because someday I’ll be a mom too.
For the last 7 years, my frequent fight with Mom has reduced to almost never, almost. Somehow along the way, we were starting to first give it a silence space when we feel upset about each other, stop saying things we will regret later and learn to forgive quicker than before. When she disagree with my act, instead of yelling at me, she go quite and when I’m in a good mood she’ll tell me how she feel about it, and vice versa.
I remember once I had this boyfriend that is nowhere meet her “profile” (I know her profile) and instead telling me to break up with him, she took me out, to have a heart-to-heart talk and said if I really love this guy, I got to stick with my decision and take all the consequences, because love will always give me good reason to hang on. That exactly what she’s doing in her relationship with Dad. They are hang in there and try to sort out anything between them, not give up, cuz they know they love each other.
It feels uplifting to actually know that your Mom is learning as much as you in this school of life. And true for most of people, age does account to make a person’s soul get mature. My mom’s is getting more and more mature faster than I thought, and I’m so proud of her.
She and my family are all I got. And how I believe that no matter how far I go, and perhaps how much I failed, how disappointing my act is or will, how broke and ruined I am or will, she’ll be the one who open her arms to embrace me and tell me “Everything’s going to be okay Lo. I love you so much.”