May 5, 2009

Mommy's mates

For as long as I remember, I don't recollect my mother having friends of her own and that was a shocking truth given her fantastic networking skills. Rather, all her "friends" were either related to her by marriages (her own and of her brothers, etc) or they were the wives of my dad's friends/colleagues or the moms of my friend's or my brother's. She never seemed to have a social circle of her own and it seemed very strange to me while I was in college and in the thick of friends and was in that phase where I couldn't live without sharing some news with a special few. And then I wondered how my mother could bear to lose touch with her friends. People she studied with and created allegiances with, of her own accord.

Now, after being married and sitting in a continent different from all my friends and family, it's easier to see why. All that pride and joy we took in branding one another as 'Friends for life' while slapping on the friendship bands in that immature phase, using the umpteen ears as sounding boards for the most ridiculous conversations, abusing the corporate Airtel numbers to make conference calls, slumber parties... weep fests, you name it, and we'd had it. While the Friendship has stood the test of time thus far, the same cannot be said of it's intensity. Sure, it's very easy to pick up where we left off and gab on for hours like giggly teenagers but that happens so less often that while it is special when it does, it pales in comparison to anything that we shared before. What did you expect, what with time zones, a crazy work schedule, couple time, personal time and social commitments, it's little wonder that we get to speak to our treasured friends all across the Globe. And if you take Amma's case, throw in a couple of kids and you have pandemonium. I guess the most important thing though, that contributed to my mom losing in touch with her friends was the unavailability of the technology that we have these days. With most of us having immediate access to email all the time when we are awake, we still find it hard to keep in touch. No wonder then, that back in those days when people had to use postal letters as an alternative to expensive STD/ISD cards to communicate, the urge and the frequency of these communications dwindled and ended with less than a whimper. It also goes to show how her marriage has moulded my mom's life. While it worked for her, I cannot imagine what I would do without my support circle (with whom I hope to keep in touch with for life). Kudos to Amma! (Advance Happy Mother's Day)
And Happy Birthday ML :)


mysticmelodiez said...

My mom, for the most falls in the same category as yours. I agree with everything that you've expressed regarding the lack of electronic media in their time unlike what we have today. However, that may have been a good enough reason for the friends to have less expectations from each other as far as the frequency of communicating goes. Apne liye its like if he/she really wanted to keep in touch ek email/call karne mein kitni der lagti hai, so its tougher to be tolerant of each other’s situation. Also, I secretly think amma’s generation were just a more content lot altogether.., satisfied with their work and families, happy with the networks they formed through them, etc. unlike us who want it all work, family, a joint group of friends that we share with our significant other as well as our own seperate gang, on top of things like couple time, quality time with kids etc etc and the labels go on and on, lolz. I don’t think either of our aspirations (ours’ or our moms’) are better than the other just different. Nice observations and a lovely post as always!


Ram said...

Why, that was an awesome post! Happy Mother's Day Amma!

I think you missed one aspect of things too. Amma came from a large family, had lots of brothers and cousins, who hung around together, went to school together, etc. So in a sense, the family were her friends.

Plus there is a 30 year generation gap, where people were a lot more subtle but genuine about their friendships. Of course, along the way there are many circumstantial friendships that we form, like the ones in Kuwait, etc. Also, for most part, she has never lived alone, always with parents or in-laws in an extended family, hence many responsibilities and duties are attached on top of kids. So, it is not a fair comparison, but I bet Amma still has friends she could talk to as if it were only yesterday that she spent time with them.

But yes, surely Kudos to Amma!!!!

Jaya said...

Mysticmelodiez -> Thanks again.. yeah, I guess women were more content a generation before us... It's with this whole pro-"woman" movement, we all want it all, like you've pointed out. Thanks for the long n thoughtful comment once again!

Bala -> Agree with you on the family thing. But come on, wouldn't there have been a person or two outside that circle of life? Those are the ones I am talking about. But it's not like the touch was lost over the years... it was probably lost as soon as she got married n moved.Thanks for the long comment btw and lets hope Amma reads all of it!

krish said...

Cute tribute to Mommy dearest... and like MysticMelodiez said, while we "pity" the lack of friends in their lives, they don't seem to miss it/realize it at all. They sure were a content lot. Good post.

Gandalf said...

Nice one babe. Keep 'em coming.

Jaya said...

Krish, Gandalf -> Thanks a bunch! And keep visiting of course!

Anonymous said...

Such a beautiful piece. You've captured it. That's all there is to say. You mommy must be proud.

Anonymous said...


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