Mothers Day couldn’t have come at a better time. This year, it comes just as we reach the purported end of the government imposed movement control order (MCO) to contain the Covid-19 pandemic
This is 53 long, long days of being teacher, home organiser, meal decider, cleaner, cook, coffee/tea maker, designated grocery shopper, dishwasher, activity planner and referee. She is all of these on top of her day job or business, while trying to juggle a healthy lifestyle and self improvement. And you are exhausted after reading just this one paragraph.
Here are 5 thoughts every Amma has had during the MCO
“Ugh, I need to wake up now,”
Sleep is a luxury when you’re an Amma. Remember that day many moons ago when you woke up thinking of that piece of homework or assignment that was due the same day. Remember how much you wanted to continue sleeping, but you knew that it was time to wake up and get to work.
That is how Ammas feel on a daily basis, especially when everyone is going to be home and she needs to juggle her job alongside the household chores.
“I wish they’d help me”
Amma’s frustration is exacerbated by Appa, who doesn’t feel the need to help while she’s slogging in the kitchen. For him, it is more important to watch the many WhatsApp videos he’s received, at the highest volume of course, while chomping on his favourite variety of kacang.
The kids are glued to their phones, laptops and tablets, and Amma is not sure if they are doing school work/working or pretending to do so, she was sure she caught a glimpse of a Facebook page on the older one’s device.
And then there is the washing up, which is further complicated by Appa, who has now moved on to gobbling mangoes to pass the time, leaving strips of mango skin in the sink because in his mind, it is a magical self-cleaning kitchen appliance.
“What do I cook today?”
The age old question that many generations of Ammas have faced, almost always not knowing what to do until push comes to shove.
Having to cook a meal for an entire family is no joke, especially if it is being done alone. The whims and fancies of all in the household need to be appeased, and that in itself is a challenge. When one person doesn’t eat fish and the other retches at the thought of chicken, what do you do?
“The MCO is so stressful!”
As mentioned earlier, the MCO has awarded Amma with even more job descriptions than what she was used to. Never did she expect that she was going to have to manage a household and coach the kids from home after their measly hour long session with the school.
Add to that the worries of the household, her own challenges at work and planning the finances, Amma has never been this stressed. To top it off, there are the buffoons on social media who spin the MCO into a productivity contest, saying things like, “This is the time for you to write that novel and get on that fitness regime, because how can you be worthy if all you’re doing is running a household?”
“I love seeing the family together,”
In spite of all these feelings, Ammas love seeing the entire family together. The stress of the day dissipates as she sees her own laughing over a game of Monopoly in the evening, or enjoying a comedy together. That makes it all worthwhile.
If your Amma is with you, help her with the chores not just today, but every single day. There is no point in posting a picture of yourself with her on social media, only to treat her like a maid for the rest of the year. Let’s not take her for granted anymore, guys.
Ammas, if you are reading this, please know that we will help you if needed, please don’t stress yourself out over the little things. And if you need that extra hour or two of sleep, let us know and we’ll do what needs to be done. We love you and are so thankful for all that you do for us! Happy Mother’s Day to all Ammas out there.