My Mum

Mum & I

My Mum

A wise person once said, ‘Because God couldn’t be everywhere at the same time he created mothers.’ And that certainly holds true for my mum.

Today I was missing my mum even more than usual, so I started leafing through a pile of old photos. Photos are amazing because they can bring back such emotions, feelings and even smells. For a few seconds which seems like an eternity you are transported back in time, emerged into the photo, and all of a sudden you are running around like a little girl in that memory, playing with your sisters who are tiny like you, your mum and dad running after you.  And then you return and you realise that, that was a long time ago, now you are grown up, you have kids of your own and some of the people who you love so dearly are not there any more.

I rub my tears put the photos away for a while and then a few hours later open the envelope again and start looking at them.  I read the writing behind each photo. My mum would always write something behind the photo, where it was taken, the year etc.  I start thinking of my mum and what an inspiration she has been for my sisters and I.

As a child my mum was very pampered being the only sister of two brothers. At her school she was a genius and was shifted into three classes ahead of her age.  At the age of 8 she started writing short stories, which she sent to newspapers and every week she would have a story published.  By the age of 10 she became a local celebrity everybody knew who she was.  One day she was approached for her stories by Raj Kapoor, a very famous leading producer/director/actor in Indian movies who was so impressed by her work.  Through him she met Nargis Dutt, and so emerged a very deep life long friendship.  Nargis aunty, as my mum would call her was an amazing lady. One of the most successful actresses of her time, an icon, and so down to earth, that you would never believe she was famous.  She loved my mum dearly and they would meet regularly.   My mum would travel to Bombay to see her and Nargis aunty would come to Delhi to see my mum.  When Nargis aunty had her first child Sanjay Dutt (Sanju mama), my mum was the first to tie a rakhi on his wrist and Sanju mama would always remind us of this whenever we saw him.  In fact even my name Priya was given to me by both Nargis aunty and my mum, since Nargis aunty had also called her own daughter Priya.

Mum & Nargis aunty at our home 1968, Mum, Nargis aunty & Sanju mama 1978 in Pali Hill Bombay (click to enlarge photo)

In 1968 my mum married my dad and she moved to London.  She already had her Masters degree in Economics from Aligarh University in India and had got admission in London School of Economics in England to study Law.  She completed the 1st year of her degree and then fell pregnant.  She then decided that she would carry on with her degree after she had had all the children she wanted.  Within five years she had 4 girls and both my mum and dad were so happy.  In Indian families especially at that time it was thought important to have boys, but my mum and dad would proudly announce to everyone that they were so happy they had 4 girls.

My mum and dad always wanted us girls to have a good start with our education and sent us all to a good school.  They always told us to just try our best.  They never pressurized us to be the top student in the class, as long as we did our best, it was good enough for them.  Today, my sisters and I all have very good jobs. We all ended up going to university and getting our degrees.  All three of my sisters are Lawyers and I, well I took the road less travelled but I am doing great!

All through our childhood my mum stayed with us at home, cooked us delicious home cooked food and when we were ever sick, both mum and dad would stay up with us all night looking after us.  We really had an amazing start and I thank both my mum and dad for that, it really has made us the people we are today.

When my sisters and I went to university my mum restarted her degree at the same time.  She continued with her law degree and became a very successful lawyer too.

When I decided that I wanted to quit my Management Consulting job and become a Feng Shui Consultant, both my mum and dad encouraged me.  To them it was much more important that my sisters and I do jobs we enjoy.  I remember when I first started out as a feng shui consultant my mum recommended me to so many of her friends.  She joined me on my first face reading workshop and would come to my feng shui meetings and dinners, taking a deep interest in my work.

My sisters and I, my dad, our whole family and also her close friends like aunty Zoe, all miss her dearly.  We know her spirit will be with us always, but sometimes we really just want to physically hold on to her and hug her so tight so that she doesn’t go away.  Even after my sisters and I bought our own homes, we still went to my parent’s house every day.  We would wait for mum to come home, always looking out the window just waiting for her car to park in the drive and then would sit and chat with her about everything and anything.  She would always come home with so much food, clothes for her grand children, little toys she had picked up etc.  My mum saw 10 of her grandchildren and last month my sister had my parent’s 11th grandchild, which she has named ‘Lalie’ after my mum.

Time never comes back, it is so important for us to enjoy every moment we have with the ones we love.  My sisters and I are so happy to have had the precious years we had with our mum and we know that now she is an angel always looking after us and keeping us safe and well.

‘A mother holds her child’s hand for a short while, but holds their heart forever.’

some childhood memories – my sisters & I (click to enlarge)

4 Responses to “My Mum”
  1. Enrique says:

    Prya thanks by so lovely history abuot your Mon. That came to me in a time that not casual one is, because mine passed away 6 week ago. Very beautiful the memories you wrote and special the last recomendation. Nothing it is so true than that. Again thank you by shearing your piece of your hard and memories whit us. Bless you and Bless al the “Mun” where ever they are.

  2. Ritu kumar says:

    Love it’s so emotionally charged & I never knew all that about your mum, so touching & well written….
    As one of your oldest friends, I am so proud to know you & be in your life….

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