The otherside of motherhood.

There has been enough spoken about the glory of motherhood. Trust me ! mother hood has brought me fullfillment that i never experienced before in any relationship.It has made me feel so proud and happy. When i see my three year old daughter smiling at me, i feel  so touched and so much loved….

NOW! lets come to the other side of it. Last night i was speaking to my friend and told him how much i want to just be on my own. How much i want to sleep using the entire bed for myself, how much i do not have to think of which vegetable to cook for an upset stomach, what time i should reach home to make the next feed ready, how much i want to watch a stupid talent hunt show and not POGO! And please do not,  now tell me ‘everything comes at a cost, even motherhood’! No. its not about paying the cost. Its a lot to do with how this world thinks and functions. Its about how men and women actually live in two different worlds altogether. Its about how the entire system around us fucntions to benefit men. Its also about how much, how much of our work and grit goes unnoticed and frustrations just not understood. Its about how much they lose out on many joys of brining up a child.

The very physicality of carrying the child in your womb, the labor pain, the breast feeding and mothering the child in all ways is all about the body and its labor. The politics around labour is all around you. Often physically labor in our society is always conviniently made responsibility of the powerless (relativley powerless or whatever). It’s the women and people of the lower caste who do most of the physical work in our society.. And physical labor has no respect, has no value. and that is what is the crux of motherhood is all about. Really I have nothing much to talk about but the physicality of the whole thing.

No! its not about men also changing nappies and feeding the child. Its not about sharing costs of running a house and the costs of having a baby. Its about million small things we women do, to see it that things are in place. The physical labor and planning that goes behind keeping all those things like.,  when the next vaccination due, whether the child socks are to small and tight and what home medicines to check with someone as the pediatricians pump the child with anti biotic for a simple cold etc etc etc…My list can go on. Its all about all these million things we do which just goes unrecongized. Yes, finally its about the politics of labour itself.

I have been planning to interview a theatre artist for a friend’s magazine and every weekend the interview gets pushed to the end. Amidst all this chaos, I have learnt to appreiciate immensely my grand mother amidst all this chaos. My grandmother was an ordinary woman, who spoke and laughed loudly (that’s what everyone said was wrong with her, otherwise she was a good woman!)  and grew she grew beans, carrots and mangoes in the small plot infront of the house and distributed to everyone in the street. Who cleaned house like a maniac and read newspaper right in the morning sitting in front of the house with her legs crossed on chair in the narrow streets of  Malleshwaram and not cared a damn for what people thought of her. How she saved newspapers so that she can sell them to buy wheat flour to feed us pooris….. I always wonder of many women, what would they really want to do if they time for themsleves. What all they have done, how many dreams foregone so that others realize their dreams, all those bright, funny, mad women whom i meet during my work…
There is this overwhelming feeling , the immense need to ‘be’ , apart form being a mother, a lover, a wife…..i need solitude, good coffee, sleep and lots of books to read.

Juglling is fine with me, at what cost is what is all about!



~ by Usha B N on December 4, 2007.

One Response to “The otherside of motherhood.”

  1. ha waiting for the days when it will be sleep, sleep, masala dosa,coffee, newpapers- lit review of Hindu at least! and TV and lunch and sleep and friends, discussions on poetry, food, children, love life, books, parents, etc etc. so much to say and do and i realise it when I have a toddler! you wrote about it and you wouldn’t imagine how much I appreciate that.

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