This Mother’s Day, Sangita Patel, entertainment reporter for ET Canada, would love to wake up late, stay in her pyjamas and spend time with her girls Ava, 7, and Shyla, 4. The former engineer explains how her own mother has shaped her values and what her mom’s hard work has afforded her.
I’m the middle child in my family; I have an older sister and brother, and a younger sister. My parents really taught us the importance of getting along, and, as a result, we’re very close. I think our bond is especially close now that we have our own families.
When my brother was just one year old, my parents emigrated to Canada from India. They didn’t have much, and I remember how hard my mom used to work. She spent her days working full-time on an assembly line at a factory where she made shoes. After a long day, she’d come home and do everything else; warm meals would be ready on the table and she’d help with our extracurricular activities, such as piano. My mother worked incredibly hard to make a good life for us.
When we watched TV together, my mom would rub my back. Even now, in my 30s, I sometimes still ask her for a back rub. She just has a way of keeping me calm and comforted. She’s retired now, but even when she was extremely busy, she took the time to do those little things.
When I had my first child, my mom stayed with me at the hospital for 48 hours and took care of me. She made special dishes meant to cleanse new moms post-birth and had them ready for me to eat. I drank fennel water she prepared and something called blessed thistle that helps with breast milk production. It really helped.
In India, we don’t have a Mother’s Day, but our family celebrates it. My sisters and I usually take my mom out for brunch; sometimes my brother joins us, and we make a day of it. We talk and we reminisce. We spoil her and do whatever she wants to do.
There’s something instilled in us, as women, that makes us want to take care of everyone. I learned that from being a mother myself and from watching my mom, who did so much and did it all without complaining.
She set the example and made me believe that anything is doable.