Mothers’ Day happens to be one of the greatest celebrated days on social media. We all want to show off our mothers and shower them with praise and admiration. For the first time since I joined social media, I did not put up a post or photo of my mom. I logged on to Whatsapp and texted her, with guilt burning my insides. It wasn’t guilt of not putting her up and all. It was guilt of just how much we wait for birthdays and Mothers’ Day to celebrate our mothers. And when we have ran out of WCWs to put up that week.
It is particularly hard for me to write this. I have battled the pros and cons of uploading this post. But I feel it is time we embraced the truth, confronted the shortcomings at hand and started finding solutions for them. The elephant being, our relationships with our mothers are not as glossy as we want to show the world, and we are doing nothing about it.
The relationship between our mothers and us is one of the most fulfilling relationships we can have, yet can be the most frustrating most devastating most draining relationship. I do not refuse that we love mothers- no, don’t get me wrong. But if we were to be honest, most of us are struggling in their mother-child relationship.
Growing up, I feared my mother. Greatly. To me, she was a teacher and a trainer. I approached her every time I had trouble with my homework, and she trained me when it came to public speaking. If ever I was struggling with anything, I would approach my dad with hypothetical questions while out watching stars or in his study poring over books until I got answers. But of course, whenever he sensed something was up with me, he’d tell my mom. And she would ask me hypothetical questions in turn.
My mother is an amazing caregiver. Anyone who knows her would testify to that. I greatly admire her. Raising three daughters she begat between ages 22 and 29 hasn’t been easy. She didn’t know how it is growing up around alcohol and boys and super exposure. To me, I don’t think she even knows how to handle a broken heart right on. She is a very good counselor. But most of those things she did not go through, you know?
So she sheltered the girls. Probably with the thought that if she protected us from the outside world, we wouldn’t need to face some difficulties. Her childhood? She couldn’t talk of boys and sex and alcohol. Oh, such promiscuity! She married her first boyfriend. A pastor who adores the life out of her even to date, 28 years later.
See, our Kenyan mothers mostly have aspired to be the BEST MOTHERS instead of being the MOTHERS WE NEED. That is the void we are trying to fill. We have overly strict mothers who may make it hard to talk to or to approach when things are wrong or ish ish. In other cases, we have mothers who are just toxic to their kids. (Yes, I said it) But are they the ones who we should blame? Should we even blame anyone for how we were raised?
Our generation is in a time when things are just crazy. We crave for parental figures who can be our friends as well, where we can run to them first before Google and before our friends. The void we have, the void we hope our mothers could have filled is still open. And we walk through life looking for SOMEONE who could fill it.
I believe that the best gift we could give our mothers this year is reconnecting with them. Quit waiting for the time you need money or you’re travelling home to talk with her. Let it be a relationship you need and wish to nurture as much as you nurture your relationship with your crush. Next year, as you put up that post and call her your best friend, let it be true.
You have a mother or step mother who’s been cruel to you? Forgiveness is key. Easier said than done, but it is crucial. “Ephesians 6:2-3 ‘Honor your father and mother’- which is the first commandment with a promise- ‘that it may GO WELL WITH YOU and that you may ENJOY LONG LIFE on earth’” You don’t have to love them. You only need to honor and obey them.
For the mothers out there, let us try to care for more than just the physical wellbeing of our kids. They need emotional health too. This year, try reconnect with your kids. “Psalms 127:3 Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children are a reward from him.” Don’t waste this gift.