Everyday’s Mother’s Day

I remember the first time I told my mom that I love her, it was over the phone. It was a humid night in KL. I was tired from cramming for exams, homesick and just wanna listen to her voice. Back in those days (mid-90’s), mobile phones were luxury items that poor Uni students like yours truly never even dreamt of owning.

So there I was, hogging the public phone booth with a pocketful of coins to feed the machine every few minutes.

Mom: U eating well?
Me: Yes.
Mom: U sleeping well?
Me: Yes.
Mom: U got study well or not?
Me: Of course lah!
Mom: Good girl then.
Me: Erm mom….
Mom: Yeah? Everything OK?
Me: I love u.
Mom: Huh? What?
Me: I love u lah. I love u and I miss u.
Mom: Erm…ok. U sure u ok? Why suddenly talk like that wan?
Me: Am ok, mom. Just let me tell u how much I love u & how much I appreciate u, k?
Mom (uncomfortable silence) : Erm….ok lah.
Me: Ok, nite mom. Talk to you in a few more days.
Mom: Erm, ok…good nite (still embarrassed).

I smile a smile that reaches all corners of my heart every time I recall that conversation.

You see, I was brought up in a very conventional Chinese way where folks don’t tell their kids how much they love them. It seems there is this Chinese superstition that if one praises the kids too much, the evil spirits will claim the lives of the kids away from the parents. I never understood why my parents never praised me when I did things right or when I came home with stars from my teachers. They just mmm-ed and went on their ways. Only when I grew a little older and started reading alot, that I realized they do love me and are proud of me. They just show it (or in their case, don’t show it) in the most stifling Chinese way. LOL.

Then I figured out a way to ‘force’ them to tell me they love me. I keep telling them at every opportunity that I love them. That I appreciate them and the sacrifices they made for me and my little brother. Being Asians, my mom responded to me more (or better) than my dad. Daddy has always been very strict and very Asian. Telling the kids he loves them would be un-cool and unheard of. So, he kept his cool. As for mom, she’ll respond in her Asian way “I love u too lah!” and quickly changed the topic. Cute.

So, this post is dedicated to all the mothers in this world (especially my mom ‘cos she is the bestest!).

  • For having the courage to endure 9 months of physical torture & at least 18 years of mental torture
  • For the countless sacrifices
  • For the home-cooked meals and special soups
  • For the tears you shed from your eyes and your heart
  • For the torn dresses/pants/shirts you mended
  • For inspiring me to write this post

Thank you from the deepest crevasses of my heart.

4 Responses to “Everyday’s Mother’s Day”

  1. What a great post gal! Love it. xoxoxo! Dad usually “tao chio” (smiles shyly) and mom smiles when I tell them I love them. I can definitely relate to your case πŸ™‚

  2. Glad you love it, CH. Coz it was written from the hearts of many folks to their very conservative Asian parents. And yes, this is dedicated to your mom too.

  3. aw, that is so sweet πŸ™‚

  4. It’s for your mom too, Shir πŸ˜‰

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