by Shruti Ramjee
Remember what you told me about the equations changing between a husband and wife once their child is born? It is very true, and after Shreya and Shreyas were born, I have come to realize it wholly. Parenthood had definitely driven us apart in a sense, and closer in another. Ashwin and I have grown stronger as a couple, grown stronger in love, and have willingly admitted another person in our lives; confident that no matter what, our relationship would not change. But you know, the raging hormones of motherhood and all, I have started thinking even deeper. Someday, the little one Shreyas will not need my physical support. Some day, he will be an independent man. And not long enough, he will be all set to establish his own career, find his own love, and live his own life with his own partner. And so will Shreya.
My equations with my own children would change.
However, would I cease to be their mother, or them, my children? No. On the contrary, we will grow matured enough in our mother-child bond to accept another person in our relationship, who will complete them. Isn’t that the way how things are to be? But why is always a point of contention between the mother and her son’s wife? And why it is not, with her daughter’s husband? After all, both the “outsiders” are those who love our kids deeply enough to share their own life unconditionally with them. Why is it accepted when I “give away” Shreya to her husband, and not with Shreyas? What does the gender of my children have to do here? Well, I never knew what gender the child was until they were born, and the labour pain was no different for both kids. Then why is a mother unwilling to accept an outsider in her son’s life, when she does it easily for her daughter?
Shreya or Shreyas marrying another person would not make me less of a mother. But still, I must slowly let go the strong umbilical bond, to make way for the bond of love to take stronghold. If I do not, I will keep tugging on to my bond, only to realize later that I have been holding on to nothing. Filial love is not forced, it is inborn. It cannot be destroyed by