Accept my mothers day wishes, mom.

Whenever mom calls, my tone of voice changes. I suddenly become authoritative. Commanding. I had not realised this till my husband pointed it out to me. And that happened when I pointed out to him – that he is so assertive with his mom.

Soon after we got married, everyday my husband would complain to my mother-in-law about the why so and so subzi was made that day, why was breakfast not served at 8 am, why did she install unauthorised apps in her mobile (which made it crash) etc etc. She would very gently try to reason with him and still provide multiple options to him if he disliked what was made. It boggled me. My man, of impeccable manners, was so rude to his mom. I started thinking. Perhaps, this is how he really is and soon he will start talking to me in that manner. And one day I took that up with him. We had a big fight (we don’t fight often, it drains us too much), and he said that its between him and his mom, nothing to do with us. And that’s when he started pointing out when I used to bully my mom on phone or in person.

Now every time I am talking to my mom I am aware of it. I try to be gentle with her. If I can be accommodative of colleagues, friends and other relatives, ofcourse I can be reasonable with her.

Mom and I have had our share of fights, oh we used to fight so much until about I was 22. Like every teenager and twenty year olds, I wanted to do everything she did not approve of. My dad, a Mumbai police office, had seen very bad things happen to girls and hence he used to be super paranoid for me. And my poor mom was always the shock absorber. Dad and me (and my brother of course) would all throw tantrums and she would be the one trying to keep some harmony while everyone threw fits of rage or silently sulked for days. But when did she get a respite? I wonder and don’t find an answer.

As far as I remember , my mom never went to her mom’s house for more that 2-3 days. And ever since I got married and before i had a baby, I  went back to stay for one night in three years. But now once baby Arjun was born, I feel so much more connected to her. When I spent the first 40 days post delivery under her care, I knew only she can handle my post-partum messiness and mood swings. Nevertheless I kept bossing her around.

Perhaps now since I am a mother , I am constantly scrutinising mother-child relationships and wonder how ours would be. Would my boy be like his father? And if he does, do I have the patience of my mom-in-law? Or would Arjun be like his mother, like me? In that case, I know that I don’t have the tenacity to withstand tantrums like my mom did.

The only cushion of comfort is when I hear my mom talking to her 77 year old mom with the same ‘Do-this and dont-do-this’ authority, I know that if they can do that for 50 years, we too can.

Nevertheless, today I will charm her. And life will go on from tomorrow.

Mom and me

O mother, it’s mothers day again!

I am almost glad Mothers Day is over. I have failed to understand the hype over it. I am always good to my mom, and have been ever since I remember. Sure, as a teenage girl, I had my share of fights with her, but then they didn’t particularly cease on Mothers day. And plus they were circumstantial fights, and not conceptual ones, so by and large we have been very good to each other.

But come Mothers day and the anticipation of what you are going to do, or literally the social media competition of who is doing the crazy what reaches such a stage that it gets nauseating. Photos of people as kids with their moms, which are hardly recognizable to us who know them only once they are full-grown adults, or typical photos of girls pouting on their wedding day with their mom in tow, starts doing the rounds. Come on, give it a break!

As kids I remember, because my friends and their friends were doing it, we used to get a card for mom on Mother’s day, and of course one for dad on Fathers day. Typically, my mom would look at it, read if there was any handwritten message, smile, give us a hug (which she would do anyway) and go back to preparing the next meal or ask us about homework. That’s it. That’s how spectacular an effect that card had on her. But eventually and finally I realized that I don’t need this drama of a special day because I can get a hug from her anytime, I can keep my head on her lap and cry as long as I want. Anytime. And if I had done something wrong, and she wanted to be mad at me or scold me, she would give two hoots about it being mothers/daughters/parents/birthday/dont-shout/take-it-easy or any other god-sent day.

Parenting is a full-time job which doesn’t stop on any day. Ans similarly kids have to be naughty, mischievous but still responsible and nice to her, dad, grandparents, brother, sister, the dog, cat, plants and every body else as much as possible and at all times. It’s not different on any  A-day, a B-day or a C-day. It’s just Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, so on and so forth.

And hence in retaliation and partly because of the enormous pressure of having done something, I let the mothers’ day pass. And let a sigh of relief.

Needless to say, me and my mom do the mother-daughter things all the time. We have taken vacations together – just the two of us, we go shopping, watch a movie, I go to her house to have a scrumptious meal at least once a week, I always get her favourite bitter chocolate bar whenever I go somewhere, we fight, we squabble, we hug, we cry, we discuss, bitch, talk, and in short we are us. For each other, and for ourselves, carrying a part of the other in our hearts.

Sometimes I think it is easier for guys. My husband hasn’t wished his mom a Happy mothers day, and there ain’t even a need to do so. He did exclaim ‘Ah, its mothers day’ and he and his mom, and me and all of us went on doing our regular business as usual. She made his favorite lentil soup, and my favourite paav-bhaji, we all had lunch, cleaned the tables and went off to take a Sunday nap. It was that easy and that peaceful. Special yes, very special, but in an everyday kind of away. In the evening we all played some carom, but we do it often without any special day signs and balloons plastered all over.

And I am sure, when I have kids, I am going to make it clear to them that no amount of bribery in the form of cards, letters, chocolates, balloons or whatever is going to spare them from eating vegetables, or doing homework or simply being kind to anyone , on any day, be it on here or on the moon.

Ah. Never-mind, to close on a positive non-cynical note and because this is rare phenomenon captured on camera of 5 generations of us , I am sharing this photo with a big, bright, colorful Happy Mother’s Day to you all. And that’s practically each and every day. Cheers.

(Seen here in the photo from right is my mom, her mom, her mom, and her mom, with me as a baby. Ages 90-70-49-22 and 3 months).5 generations Snd


On that occassion, presenting here a Chocolate mud cake, chocolate being my mom’s favourite, but no, I did not make it for the day, I made it because I knew she would like it. Any day.

Chocolate mud cake

I got this recipe from my friend Charlene who makes some awesome chocolates, who got it from her friend and was kind enough to share a tried and tested mud cake recipe. This recipe makes an 8-inch cake and like its name, it is super chocolaty and yum.

Chocolate Mud Cake

What you will need:

  • 140 gms dark chocolate
  • 140 gms salted butter
  • a pinch of salt if using unsalted butter
  • 215 gms castor sugar
  • 140 gms flour
  • 11.5 gms baking powder
  • 15.5 gms unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 225 ml warm water
  • 2 eggs

For ganache :

  • 100 gms dark chocolate, chopped
  • 100 gms fresh cream

What to do :

  1. Pre-heat oven to 160C.
  2. Melt chocolate and butter over double boiler or in a  microwave in short bursts, whisk to combine.
  3. Sieve flour, baking powder and cocoa.
  4. Add sugar to the dry mixture.
  5. Add water to the flour mixture and mix till smooth.
  6. To this add the molten chocolate and butter mixture.
  7. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk eggs. Add it to the chocolate mixture. Whisk till combined.
  8. Grease and line 8 inch round or square pan and pour the prepared batter in the pan.
  9. Bake at 160C for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or till knife comes out clean when inserted.
  10. For ganache, take chopped chocolate pieces in a heatproof bowl.
  11. Heat the fresh cream, pour it over chopped chocolate, cover for 2 minutes and then whisk to form a smooth ganache.
  12. Once the cake is baked, let it cool completely before pouring the ganache over the cake.
  13. Cut, serve and eat.

Piece of chocolate mud cake

Notes:

  1. This is a fairly simple cake that can be whipped up very easily. Be careful while baking as the dark chocolate color can be misleading. Do not overbake.
  2. If while pouring the ganache it has cooled down, slightly heat it in a microwave or spread the cooled ganache over the cake with a spatula.