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It was a usual lazy Sunday morning at our home. The cooker whistled a sharp siren and then with a loud thud landed back on the lid. Few of the birds who were late risers were eagerly chirping away doing their daily chores. A crisp neatly folded newspaper was lying on the dining table and the aroma of the fresh Upma and masala tea were tantalising the nostrils! I, my better-half and my in-laws were about to have our breakfast.
Thump! A bedroom door opened and closed. My daughter stood there holding on to her favourite blanky! The first thing she did was search with her eye-radar to track for her favourite person, obviously me. My mother-in-law finished her breakfast in a jiffy and picking up on the clue, lovingly opened her arms and coaxed my daughter to come in her lap, allowing me some more time to enjoy my breakfast! Grandma was her favourite person after mommy, so she willingly snuggled in her lap.
Like a recharged battery, my daughter was totally energised after a good night’s sleep and wanted to get down to the business of play. Her grandma was more than willing to participate. So they started playing ‘house’, a pretend play where grandma was to become dad and my daughter was to become mom.
Grandma (pretending to be the dad): “Ding dong! I am back from office. Can I get a cup of coffee and some snacks please?”
My daughter (pretending to be me) with a smile: “Hi honey! You are back early today. I also just came back home, had a tiring day today.”
Grandma (pretending to be the dad): “Oh is it! No problem. Let me make coffee for both of us.”
My daughter gave a little aghast look. As if grandma has forgotten that she is the Dad! “Grandma, that’s not what you say. Mommy makes coffee for dad.”
Grandma responds, “But mommy is tired today and she also just came home, she might also want a cup of coffee.”
After a split second of soul searching silence, my daughter reacted, “Oh! So whoever is less tired makes the coffee!”
“Yes my angel. You got it right. We help and care for each other because we are family. Mommy does all the housework out of love and everybody contributes coz we love mommy. If mom is tired, dad can make coffee or do any of the housework, just like mom can do dad’s office work.”
As it was coming from her grandma, it has to be true. So my daughter accepted it as the universal truth. She stretched out on the sofa and said, “Ok honey! Would love to have a coffee and some snacks also please!”
We all being spectators of the play, burst out laughing!
During this entire episode, my mother-in-law touched upon a small part of my heart and captured it for life. I looked at my mother (gifted by the laws) and her son (a replica of hers) and felt a rising emotion in my heart.
That day and many more days like these, my mother-in-law generates so much respect for herself and the entire womankind. I smiled and silently thanked her not only for teaching my daughter the values of family but a lesson in equality.
Women are the pillars who nurture the culture and value systems in the society. They inculcate the thought processes and conditioning of our future generations.
Today, a small but powerful message was communicated to a child which laid a foundation for a more equal, open, tolerant and modern society.
A salute to all the mothers and mother-in-laws who have been at the root of this change movement.
A toast towards a progressive society and motherhood because #EveryDayIsMothersDay!