Mother, Mother, In My Home

In light of Mother’s Day, students reflect on their mothers and the influence these women have had on them.

Reading Time: 5 minutes

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By Aryana Singh

Mother, mother, in my home. I hope you know I love you so.

Caught up in the daily struggles of remote learning, it’s easy for students to forget how hard mothers have been working to be caring and supportive to their children, especially during the pandemic. Mother’s Day may have already passed this year, but every day is a good day to remember and cherish the love and support of our mothers.

Sophomore Eugenia Ochoa celebrated Mother’s Day with both her mother and grandmother this year. “My Grandma was here, so we celebrated with her. I cooked for my grandma, my aunt, and my mom—some pastries,” she said.

Likewise, sophomore James Shin kept Mother’s Day simple. “Every Mother’s Day, I make gifts and try giving them to my mom. I can’t give them anything on Amazon or anything because they’ll know what the gift is. I just spend the night before making them a little origami,” he said.

Others celebrated with a formal touch. Sophomore Alice Zheng went all out for Mother’s Day, which also happened to be their mom’s birthday this year. “We gave Mom a spa day, sort of […] And then we went to eat somewhere fancy. It was French. That was nice. And then I gave her a painting,” they said. This painting, which is currently hanging in their mother’s classroom, took the longest out of any other they’ve made.

However, not all Mother’s Days were smooth sailing, as sophomore Ruby Friedman explained. “It was an interesting day,” they said. “We went to dinner and we had a nice sushi dinner. We got home and my mom was cutting something and she cut her finger.” The mayhem did not end there, though. “And then I fainted in the hallway because there was a lot of blood [...] It was just chaos.”

Sophomore Anjini Katari’s day also had a few bumps along the road. “We drove upstate to one of the state parks and we had a picnic,” she described. “It was also drizzling so we had a picnic in the drizzle. And it was also cold [...] She did appreciate the sentiment, and she enjoyed it. It was just very nice all around.”

Though Mother’s Day has already passed this year, many students still recognize the impact their mothers have had on them. “My mom is really awesome,” Katari said. She described her mom as wholesome, funny, affectionate, and much more organized than herself. “She’s the one who forced me to sit down and do my Kumon homework, which, kudos to her because I was a bad child when it came to Kumon […] No one likes Kumon.”

Many students also learned their organizational habits from their mothers. Zheng, for example, has taken to making calendars and lists, just like their mother. “She’s the one who’s on top of everything, as most moms are. She plans everything, she’s got all the calendars, the times, she reminds us what to do,” they said.

Freshman Arshia Mazumder’s mother is also very put together. Whenever Mazumder loses something, her mother always manages to find it within five minutes. “I think I take her too much for granted. Thanks, mom!” she wrote in an e-mail interview.

An organized mom is often also a resilient mom, who inspires her children to be the same way. Katari’s mother, for example, had next to nothing when she immigrated to the U.S. from India at 20 and got to where she is today through hard work. “She’s done a lot and she’s gone through a lot, but the place that she’s in today […] She's in a good place,” Katari said. “I definitely admire her for all of the work that she’s done and that she continues to put in, especially for me and my sister.”

Ochoa is similarly inspired by her mom, who encourages her to make art despite having a rough time as a writer. “I admire her a lot because I feel like she's very resilient. A lot of stuff has happened to her, but she's still cheery and smiley and she's always encouraging me and my dad.”

Friedman is also appreciative of their mother’s strong nature. “She can speak in public. She’s a very strong, independent woman-slash-girlboss,” they said. “I admire her confidence and speaking abilities and her resilience.”

Friedman has also learned to be fierce and firm through their mother’s tendency to speak her mind to anyone. “I’m very grateful for that because she will advocate for me without fear,” they said. “She will call up the school and yell at them to help me in some way. [...] She’s taught me to stand up for myself and absolutely have no filter.” They have come to share many interests with their mother, the most notable of which being their mutual love for good food. “It’s funny because my mom [and I] are very similar, so when we have good food, we enter a state of pure bliss,” Friedman described. “But we’ve also come out screaming out of restaurants with bad food, just being angry for the rest of the day.”

In Katari’s case, her sense of morals and respect for others is credited to her mother. “I definitely see the world in a different way from her stories and compared also to the way I live,” Katari said. Her mother’s South Asian culture and customs have also played a large role in her childhood in the States.“It’s the silly things, like you can’t wash your hair on Thursdays, apparently. Thursdays you’re not supposed to do anything,” she described. “I’m like, why? ‘That’s just how it works.’”

It’s not always sunshine and rainbows between mothers and their children, though. Zheng and their mother sometimes find that their opinions clash over issues like feminism and LGBTQ+ rights. They are often warned by their mother not to wear tops with low necklines in fear of sexualization by strangers. “I don’t care, because I’m a child and I’m like, first of all, you should not be sexualizing me if I don’t want you to,” Zheng said. “That makes perfect sense to me, but [...] sometimes our perceived realities don’t match up.”

Shin also tends to grapple with his mother’s differing opinions. “We fought about the vaccine because we had different opinions about it,” he said. “Other times, though, we’re pretty friendly together and we talk a lot. It fluctuates, but I wish it didn’t fluctuate and we just stayed on good terms the whole time.”

Despite a rough patch or two, students feel like they have plenty to be grateful to their mother for. “[Her] existence. I don’t know, loving me. Just being my mom and being like ‘Yeah! I’ll foster an emotionally damaged teenager who will probably give me a whole lotta trouble,’ and still deciding to go through with it because she [EXPLETIVE] loves me,” Zheng said.

The bottom line is that even when times are hard, the unconditional love of mothers is unbeatable. “My mom puts up with me, which means she puts up with a lot,” Katari said. “And I’m very, very, very appreciative. And I love her a lot for that.”

Mazumder wishes her mother more time for herself in the future. “A lot of the time she sacrifices her free time just to care for us. I hope once me and my siblings [are] a little older, she can spend time on her passions.”

In light of all that our mothers do and sacrifice for us, Katari hopes to remind everyone to let our mothers know how appreciative we are. “Just say ‘thank you’ or ‘I love you’ to your mother. Because while we feel it, not everyone always realizes that we feel that way.”

So, what are you waiting for? Go give that loving and hard-working woman a big hug!