Mama, Thank You for Everything
What did she do when you know nothing?
You didn’t know of the sleepless nights she endured because you frequently woke up crying when you were hungry and drenched. You were unaware that she ignored the overpowering fatigue just to make sure you were well attended. You were mad at her if she didn’t buy you ice cream or the toys you like. You even forced her to a lot of chasing because you tenaciously ran to a place she said you couldn’t go. And when you were caught, you kicked her violently and threw things at her. But after all, she was still there preparing your milk, giving you a hot bath and ensuring your mosquito-protected sleep.
What did you do when you already knew something?
You didn’t care if you couldn’t catch a glimpse of her more often in the house anymore. You only cared about what was there to eat or had she left something for you to eat. And if you hated the food she kept, you made lots of complaining straight to her face. Then sooner, you started screaming at her and talking back to her. But after all, she was still there asking if you had eaten already, if you were doing well in school, washing your filthy underwear and dirty clothes, spending too much time sewing your torn shirt, pressing your uniforms, and attending to your school affairs.
What did you do to break her heart?
You were unafraid to steal from her personal coffers and even tricked her about money—asking funds for your self-made science project and educational tours. You even threatened her of running away if she didn’t give you money for your nonsense activities with your friends. Then, you started to treat her like a maid at home, feeling like you were the boss. You couldn’t even fold your blanket or straighten your rumpled bed cover. You regarded her like a ‘nobody’ and challenged her with your crooked reasons and arguments. But after all, she was there to remind you that she was not angry, she was not hurt and she was not turning her back on you because you are hers and she doesn’t want you astray.
What did she do after how many times you have broken her heart?
Why was she like that? She had suffered more than what she deserved because of your mulishness. But, why would she allow herself to suffer more? A martyr, you say? Maybe. But she did all that because she’s your mother and because she made a promise to herself before you were born that she will protect you with all her life.
What did she do after all the painful things you did to her?
She didn’t care if she got burned under the heat of the scorching sun just to buy your wants. She didn’t care if she got colds and influenza under the rain just to keep your bed warm. She didn’t care if she would die in hunger just to provide you a good meal. She didn’t care if she would miss so many things in her life just to secure your future. She would do anything and everything just to assure that you will be living a comfortable life.
Why can’t you love her back?
But most of the time, you hated her big mouth—a nagger. You abhorred her restrictions—overprotective. You contested her judgment—too old-fashioned. You defied her rules—too conservative. You questioned her decisions—too virtuous. And then, you called her different names, you yelled at her, you cursed her, you made her cry, and you broke her spirit with disappointments.
“From her, I get my passion for music and singing. She was not supposed to marry my father, but another man, when the day before her wedding, my father stole her away, leaving the man who was to marry her in misery. Thank God for it and I am here!”— Mama, The Most Beautiful Mother in the World, A Walk Through Life, by Yours Truly
What have you done for her to lighten her heart?
Now, have you done something to return her love, compassion and kindness? Can you remember the moment you last told her “Thank You”? Do you notice her greying hairs? Do you know of her fading eyesight? Do you even care to ask if she was fine? Do you check on her if she slept comfortably on her bed? Do you even care to buy her ice cream or treat her to a sumptuous meal? Can you remember the last time you told her “I’m sorry“? Can you still remember the last time you said “I love you”?
What you should have done a long time ago?
If you are still treating this woman sardonically and painfully like the old times, you should think about it and try to remind yourself that without her, you will never be complete. Celebrate every day like it’s your mother’s day, in that way you will remind yourself that in your lifetime you owe her millions of things, if not everything. Yes, you could be right, you can possibly have a hundred moms in this world but do you know that the truth is? You can only have one mother—and that is nobody else but your mother.
It is high time you get to know the bravest woman behind your life
Regardless of who and what she is doing, be proud and be grateful that God has given you the most beautiful and wonderful mother in the whole world.
As the Filipino community, and maybe some other territories around the world, celebrates the essence of motherhood today, I would like to extend my greetings for them. Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers—and those who are playing the role of a mother—all over the world. Thank you for all the love you shared with us.