Monday, March 17, 2008

Do mothers really lie to their kids?

Before I had my daughter, I was already a cry-baby when it comes to talking about mothers – the more I became when I turned out a mom myself. I vividly remember how my aunt and I shed buckets of tears after watching the movie “Nasaan ka Inay?” eons ago in Maricel Theatre. I would cry too even if I’m just reading articles or stories about mothers that once again, I couldn’t help but cry, unmindful of the passersby, while I was reading an article forwarded to me via email.

Did my mom ever lie to us? If yes, how many lies did she tell us? Why did she lie? Did she really have to lie? Then I asked myself, did I ever lie to my daughter? Or would I ever lie to my daughter? I don’t have the answers now…


This story begins when I was a child: I was born poor.

Often we hadn't enough to eat.Whenever we had some food, Mother often gave me her portion of rice.While she was transferring her rice into my bowl, she would say .."Eat this rice, son! I'm not hungry."This was Mother's First Lie.

As I grew, Mother gave up her spare time to fish in a river near our house; she hoped that from the fish she caught, she could give me a little bit more nutritious food for my growth. Once she had caught just two fish,she would make fish soup. While I was eating the soup, mother would sit beside me and eat the what was still left on the bone of the fish I had eaten. My heart was touched when I saw it. Once I gave the other fish to her on my chopstick but she immediately refused it and said,"Eat this fish, son! I don't really like fish."This was Mother's Second Lie.

Then, in order to fund my education, Mother went to a Match Factory to bring home some used matchboxes which she filled with fresh matchsticks.This helped her get some money to cover our needs. One wintry night Iawoke to find Mother filling the matchboxes by candlelight. So I said,"Mother, go to sleep; it's late: you can continue working tomorrow morning." Mother smiled and said"Go to sleep, son! I'm not tired"This was Mother's Third Lie.

When I had to sit my Final Examination, Mother accompanied me. After dawn,Mother waited for me for hours in the heat of the sun. When the bellr ang, I ran to meet her. Mother embraced me and poured me a glass of teathat she had prepared in a thermos. The tea was not as strong as my Mother's love, Seeing Mother covered with perspiration, I at once gave her my glass and asked her to drink too. Mother said .."Drink, son! I'm not thirsty!".This was Mother's Fourth Lie.

After Father's death, Mother had to play the role of a single parent. She held on to her former job; she had to fund our needs alone. Our family's life was more complicated. We suffered from starvation. Seeing our family's condition worsening, my kind Uncle who lived near my house cameto help us solve our problems big and small. Our other neighbors saw that we were poverty stricken so they often advised my mother to marry again. But Mother refused to remarry saying .."I don't need love!"This was Mother's Fifth Lie.

After I had finished my studies and gotten a job, it was time for my old Mother to retire but she carried on going to the market every morningjust to sell a few vegetables. I kept sending her money but she was steadfast and even sent the money back to me. She said,"I have enough money!"That was Mother's Sixth Lie.

I continued my part-time studies for my Master's Degree. Funded by theAmerican Corporation for which I worked, I succeeded in my studies. With a big jump in my salary, I decided to bring Mother to enjoy life in America but Mother didn't want to bother her son; she said to me .."I'm not used to high living!"That was Mother's Seventh Lie.

In her dotage, Mother was attacked by cancer and had to be hospitalized. Now living far across the ocean, I went home to visit Mother who was bedridden after an operation. Mother tried to smile but I was heartbroken because she was so thin and feeble but Mother said,"Don't cry, son! I'm not in pain!"That was Mother's Eighth Lie.

Telling me this, her eighth lie, she died ...YES, MOTHER WAS AN ANGEL! M - O - T - H - E - R "M" is for the Million things she gave me"O" means Only that she's growing old"T" is for the Tears she shed to save me"H" is for her Heart of gold"E" is for her Eyes with love-light shining in them"R" means Right, and right she'll always be, Put them all together, they spell "MOTHER" a word that means the world to me.

For those of you who are lucky to be still blessed with your Mom's presence on Earth, this story is beautiful. For those who aren't so blessed, this is even more beautiful.


Dhang said...

Aawww made me think of my mother and how much I miss her. Although we often talk on the phone, there's just no substitute for physical presence. Gusto ko na tuloy umuwi and give her a hug.../sniff

noeds said...

thanks for posting this Jane,it's really beatiful and touching.I was 10 when my mother died and i know she's a great mom.
I think it's not bad to lie,especially or as long as you know it's best for your child
Cheers to us all mothers!!

Jane 101 said...

Hello Dhang, thanks for dropping by. I go with your sentiments...

Hi Noeds, no problem. Yeah, cheers to all mothers! :)

lovelyn said...

Beautiful lies Jane!

Jane said...

Indeed, Lovelyn! Beautiful lies...