Friday, October 31, 2008

Dear Mama

You retire today. But I know that you never tire, so you will never re-tire. You are off from your regular duty of administering. I know how much you relished doing it. You have practically thrown yourself into the task of making the surroundings, institutions and everybody around you visibly better than when you first find them. I use the verb ‘have’ instead of ‘had’ because you will always remain this way. There is no past tense in your life nor your career for there is nothing undone, nothing that was wished for and not achieved.

If there is a life packed with action, action and more action, it has to be yours. No travel has been too long, no hour too late for your work. I have looked upon you as a super-human and a super-mom. Life literally threw stones at you and you used them to build a house for all of us to live in. When I look at you, I see you dancing with joy at my wedding; I see you at the gate of our house on a scooter with loads of groceries in the dicky of the scooter; I see you walking into government and non-government offices and commanding respect; I see you leading your staff onto welcoming the chief minister of the state with élan; I see a life so full that there is no room for emptiness. Weathered, conditioned, beaten by the winds, your face today reflects the strength that you have achieved over the decades, the strength you want me to have. Whenever I am low, whenever I feel I am not getting my due, I think of a woman who has worked overtime (without that overtime allowance) to give a better opportunity to her students, her staff and to do more justice to her job. It is then, that I think that I have a long way to go. Your life, your history, your study-career is an example so close to home that I have never been able to think beyond it.

You are not the resting kinds, I know you will take up another administrative assignment. It would hardly matter if it is paid or honorary. What matters is that it must afford you the opportunity to do something radical and different-otherwise it wont be exciting enough for you.

I came into your life clad in that saffron dress when you were close to reaching the peak of your career. The happiness that you exuded at my entry in your life has always been with me-through shine and through rain. I remember you got your PhD degree a couple of months after I came, and we were all one proud family. Your daily routine of getting up way before everybody else, giving me a dose of ‘work hard, it will help you’ and banishing me to the roof-top to study alone has actually led me to finish my own PhD project. Living with you is a daily challenge, of having to prove myself close to what your expectation of ‘perfect’ is. It has worked wonderfully to my benefit.

There is so much that I wish to say today upon the superannuation of a brilliant service. I feel I have not been able to express even half of what I had to say to begin with. Perhaps this is how we all are-lost for words when we need them the most.

But I have found the words that I wanted to say.

I am proud that you are my mother-in-law.

35 comments:

phatichar said...

Your most touching post ever :')

Pinku said...

I am speechless.

Its a beautiful post indeed. Salutes to both of you.

Jagjit said...

Oh! I didn't know until the last line! Wow! The mother, the daughter and the post - all three deserve an applause...

Imp's Mom said...

I've got goosebumps! beautiful post...

Manasa said...

woow yaar.. Never knew you've achieved Ph.D and you're MIL is also has Ph.D. Your MIL seems to be a wonderful person. Wish even I get a MIL likes yours :)

Indian Home Maker said...

Aw lovely post ... hats off to you both :)

Monika said...

very nicely written... salutes to both of u and the relation u share....

and happy retirement for her

Rajindarjit said...

Dear Mampi,
My hearty congratulations on the occasion of supperannuation of Bhain ji.

Your feelings posted here in beautiful words, are like a flash on a personality you respect the most,flash on a relationship you are holding with her, flash on her guidance to you through her un-tiring routine.

I wish her long and healthy life.

I am proud of you.

May God bless you!

Dhindsa

kiran said...

Congratulations 'Mama' on a life so well lead that we even as total outsiders have become a part of that wonderful experience. Very touching post ma'am and I pray that your MIL continues on that same confident and successful path forever!

roop said...

to be happy in life, healthy and happy relationships are key. this post not only serves as an acknowledgment of a very worthy woman's accomplishments but also is an inspiration for many mothers in law and many daughters in law that a healthy and a happy relationship between the two can happen contrary to the stereotype.

well written. i liked the 'saffron' touch. :)

GREWAL KIRAN said...

I too dont have words what to say. But i wish me and every girl may get mom like her.Congratulations. god bless.

Mampi said...

Sri-Thank you.

Pinku- :)

Jagjit-Thank you, Mama's share has been conveyed to her, I accept mine.

Imp's Mom-Its for all moms.

Manasa-I see that I managed to impress you enough, hehe. Yes, Mom is an amazing person, much more amazing than this post can convey. Amen to your wish too!

IHM-Thank you.

Monika-Thanks, I have conveyed all your wishes to her.

Mama-Thanks. Well, you found her for me. So, the credit goes to you.

Kiran-She also is so happy to know about all your comments on this post. Thanks for your wishes.

Roop-She has taught me many things in life, I am grateful to God she is there. Yes, we share a great relationship and am proud of it.

KiranG-Yes, yes you will. I am actually on the lookout for a good Mom-Law for you, hehe.

Sidhusaaheb said...

Ah! Now that's one saas-bahu saga that can be an inspiration to many!

:)

nidhi said...

very touching...first of all congratulations to 'mama' :)
i'm really touched by the relationship you share with your ML!

philip9876 said...

Did ur MIL win the award? Btw, what does she do? Is she also a teacher?

Congrats for a great post. Very rare to see a DIL writing in praise of her MIL ;)

Vidya said...

What a lovely post! Straight from the heart.

MAN IN PAINTING said...

This is one of the best post i have ever read in this blog world.It was so touchy.Normally when we read anything we connect with those images we already have inside us ie with ourselves...But in this post i just got connected with your family..
my wishes to both of you..
MIP

Manish Raj said...

Mampi you are a blessing personified...I never knew your mama is so lucky as well..

Devaki said...

Your most touching post ever - I will second that!

Even I never never imagined (although you dropped many hints along the way) that this was your MIL you were talking about. Lucky (and wise) you to share such a beautiful relationship with her. I am sure she must be a very special lady too.

Gurinderjit Singh said...

I was looking for a picture of your mother-in-law in this post, but I just read the post again and I can imagine an image you have portrayed with beautiful words. May all d-i-l sing the same song and all m-i-l deserve the same

my space said...

mampi-i loved his..I hope I meet this fiesty lady at some point..how wonderful to have such a strong support...your post brings back memories of my MIL who was radically different from yours but for one thing...she too was a strong influence and support for me..

sukumbho said...

I've met her only couple of times when she visited Delhi. I was impressed by her genuine concern about her students and the sincerity with which she spoke - soft and confident. What Mampi writes is just the summary of what she has been telling about her these many years.
Sukumbho.

zirelda said...

What a wonderful post!

Your mother in law sounds like a great lady as you are too.

churningthewordmill said...

oh my gawd ..thats such a touching post.. im so glad u have a ma in law who is so inspiring... the positive relationship u share is clearly reflected in your writing...
mandira

snippetsnscribbles said...

wow! that was so beautifully expressed !! wonderful :) I'm glad you have a nice relationship with the MIL...something that very few people actually believe in...and hardly get to see these days :)

Mampi said...

SS- Someone tell EK...

Nidhi-Thanks, your congrats are conveyed to her. Yes, I cherish the relationship.

Philip-She could finally not make it, due to the SMS game. Yes, she has retired as Principal of a PG college.

Vidya-Am glad you liked it.

MIP-I am so happy it was something you liked.

Manish-I Blush, blush, blush... Arent we all blessings in our own way?

Devaki-Yes, Me and mama work hard to keep this relationship sweet and strengthened.

Guri-Yes, I missed putting up a pic. But I dont regret now that you say you can see her.

MySpace-Sure, I would be so proud to introduce you to her. I am sorry about your MIL, I remember your post about her.

Bho-I am grateful to mom that this lurker finally shunned his laziness to write a few words even if they are for her. I have conveyed all your wishes to her and here is her smile for you :)

Z-Yes, she is wonderful and I depend on her a lot.

Mandy-Thank you. She is a force to reckon with. Literally a tsunami when inspired...

Sns-GOd willing, it would stay like that till my dying day.

Ashwani Saini said...

..Mampi,it's your best post, words just flowing from the heart..

Mama - Mia said...

lovely lovely mampi!

heres wishing ma in law an even more fulfiling life ahead!

cheers!

abha

PARRY said...

It was really touching post and well written. I not only wish a MIL like her's but also atleast half prowess of writing as yours. :)

My best wishes to your mom.

dipali said...

What an amazing post about an amazing woman from another amazing one.
All the best to your mother-in-law in whatever she ventures to do next!

Oreen said...

i seriously thought u wrote it for your mom!
and was wondering what u meant by entry in saffron dress...:)

awesome... touching...

Ritu said...

Lovely. A truly touching post. I think you both have worked at building this relationship based on mutual respect. I respect you both for it.

jaspreet said...

hello di,
you r great. may god bless u nd ur family!!!!!!!!!

Hip Grandma said...

That was a wonderful tribute.My congratulations to your mom (in law?)

Mampi said...

Ashwani-Thank you.

Abha-Cute cute Abha, Thank you for your wishes.

Parry-God willing you surely would get a good MIL. Writing prowess? I wish I could play guitar like you.

Dipali-Thanks a ton for the amazing words too. She is appearing in LLB 5th semester this Dec. THen she will take up an assignment, lets see where.

Oreen-Thank you. I wore saffron wedding dress and it was my MIL's idea.

Ritu-Thank you. I know you can understand. Yes, we have worked hard in building it. I think she being the maturer and the elder one in this relationship had to work harder than me.

Jaspreet-Thank you for your comment. Keep visiting.

HipGrandma-Thank you for your wishes. I have conveyed them to her.