Mothering Sunday vs Mother’s Day

There is a difference between Mothering Sunday and Mother’s Day.

Firstly, Mothering Sunday is celebrated in the UK and Mother’s Day everywhere else in the world.

Secondly, Mothering Sunday is celebrated on the fourth Sunday in Lent and Mother’s Day is on the first Sunday in May.

Thirdly, traditional Mothering Sunday is when people return to their mother church but then it turned to when those in service (household workers) are given a day off to visit their mothers and they will pick flowers (traditionally daffodils) on their way to their mothers’; Mother’s Day was started by a an American Lady to honour her mother.

So, today is Mothering Sunday in the UK which is nowadays treated the same as Mother’s Day… but it’s not.

Loss

When the news came in to say that there is now no hope to find anyone alive from MH370, I looked at my daughter and wonder.

China has a one child policy. How are these parents feeling of losing the only child that they ever had? They had no choice but only have this one and only child that they dote on.

Losing any child is horrendous, no matter how many children you have. I know my late grandmother was distraught on losing one of my aunts even though she still has her eight other children around her.

I still think about the two miscarriages I had and how lucky I am to have my daughter with me. I wish I have more children but to have her is wonderful.

And if I ever lose her, I just don’t know what I’d do.

Be Grateful You Ungrateful Child

During my journey this morning, my ear pricked up when I heard a conversation between two people, let’s call them A and B.

A was doing most of the talking and B was doing most of the listening.

From what I understood, A was complaining about her parents. It seems that A is still staying with her parents and she looks about mid to late 20s. A was talking about her parents keep interfering with her life but what really got on my nerves was when she was saying about at least she’s not paying rent and something like her parents never asked but if they did, why should she as it’s her money.

What?!

Maybe I’m from a different generation… I’m definitely from a different culture. If I was living with my mom, I would pay her rent even if she didn’t ask. I would pay my share of bills and I would even give her some extra for all the trouble.

Even now, I’m in a different country from my mom, I feel guilty that I do not have the extra funds to give her. She had (and still is) sacrificed a lot for me and a few pennies here and there that I could give her is nothing compared to what she has (and is still) gone through.

Please understand, my mom will never ask… I just wish I could give.

I just hope when my child grows up, she will not have the conversation A and B had about me. I hope my child will be grateful of the little things that I can give her and not think about the things that I am not able to give her.

No Tricks No Treats

carved pumpkin

31 of October. The day we celebrate everything ghoulish. Where parents let lose their children to demand treats from total strangers. I don’t know when Halloween started to be big in the UK because when I came over 20 years ago, I don’t remember seeing so many Halloween products plastered in every shop. But then it could just be me being me and totally oblivious to my surroundings back then.

I admit, I can see the fun side of Halloween. As you noticed from the picture I pasted on this post, I carved a pumpkin. I did it for my little girl to take to nursery where they will have a little party at the end of the day. I bought her a cheap costume as she said she wanted to be a witch this year. I brought ghoulish shaped ginger biscuits to work. And as I’ve carved a pumpkin, I will be using the pumpkin flesh to make pumpkin pie.

But one thing I will not take part in or encourage my little girl to do is trick and treating.

Why would I want my little girl to go out and harass strangers for this one day when on any other day my advise to her is be friendly but be careful with strangers?

Why would I want my little girl to collect all the sweets, chocolates and other sugary things under the sun for this one day when on any other day I limit her intake of sugared goods?

Why on earth should I open my door to kids demanding sweets or, if I don’t have sweets, money when on any other day they would not dream of doing so unless they are mugging me?

Apart from that, I do think that Halloween is fun as I love carving pumpkins, making pumpkin pie and seeing my little girl getting excited about her costume and her party.

Am I the Christmas Scrooge/Grinch?

It’s mid October and I can feel Christmas approaching.

It’s mid October and I cringe at the sight of anything Christmas.

It’s mid October and Christmas is in the meeting agenda at work.

It’s mid October and my little girl is getting excited at the sight of Christmas decorations in the shops.

IT IS MID OCTOBER FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE!!!

Please don’t get me wrong. I am a Muslim but I do not have a problem with Christmas. It is a Christian celebration to commemorate the birth of baby Jesus and I think it is a beautiful thing. I used to have an annual visit to St Martins in the Fields to listen and take part with the Christmas carols. I always accepted invitation by the University Chaplain for the annual Christmas carols gathering. I do like the feel of the spirit of Christmas.

The problem I have with Christmas is the commercialization of Christmas and the spirit of want, want, want and give me, give me, give me.

I do not like this tradition of writing to Father Christmas or St Nikolaus (yes, I have a problem with Santa Claus) a list of what you want for Christmas. Why should you get presents for Christmas? It’s not YOUR birthday.

I do not want my little girl to grow up expecting presents on Christmas day. Of course I will get her a little something to open on Christmas day, but that is it, a little something. If she wants a bicycle with pedals, she will have to wait for HER birthday. I want her to be spoilt for her birthday but not Christmas.

As my little girl is getting bigger and starting to understand things, I feel that I need to start curbing and I hope that my husband will be on the same page as me. He knows my feelings about it and I’m not going to stop his family members from getting our little girl presents but they have to be one little present from each family, as in one little present from her grandparents, one little present from her aunt’s family, one little present from her uncle’s family.

I would like her to understand from a very early age that Christmas is not about getting presents.

Yes, I know that some parents use it as leverage as in ‘if you’re not good, Santa is not going to bring you any presents for Christmas’ but that is not the sort of bribery that I want to advocate. She has to learn to be good regardless.

So, this is how I view things. I’m not saying that spoiling your children during Christmas is wrong, it’s just not the way I want my little girl to be brought up.

Oh… a couple of weeks ago I bought a Dr Seuss book for my little girl which contains five stories. One of the stories is  How the Grinch Stole Christmas. My little girl asked me to read it for her and I told her that I will only read that story to her in December. Yes, I’m such a mean mama.

Absent at Term Time

I was listening to a radio talk show and one of the topic was about a mother getting fined for taking her son off school for a couple of weeks. She was getting married in the Caribbean and wanted her son to give her away. She gave the school one year notice about this and the school rejected her request. She still took her son off school and was fined £50. Out of ‘principle’ she refused to pay and she was taken to court and now she has to pay around £500.

The radio presenter was agreeing with the mother and some listeners agreed with him, saying that the price for a holiday may go up by £1,000 during school holidays.

One listener agreed with the mother taking the son off school but said that she should have paid the fine and left it at that.

What would I do?

I think as my mom was a teacher and to me education is important, I don’t think I would take my child off school. By taking a child of school, what do you teach the child? That it is OK to go against authority?

Yes, the world is your oyster and you will learn a lot by traveling to different parts of the world. But education is important!

I don’t remember ever being taken out of school during school term. I was lucky enough to be able to travel and even if I didn’t, I had really good education at school that even though I have never been to Japan, for my O-level equivalent, I did geography and answered really well on the Japanese seawater pearl cultivation.

My mom was a geography teacher and I had a really good geography teacher at school.

Of course I could understand taking a child out of school due to special circumstances is understandable but it is the school’s decision. If you decide not to abide with the school’s decision, you should then face the consequences.

To miss two weeks of education is a lot. If your child does not do well for his/her exam, I bet you will still blame the school.

There are kids in other parts of the world who hunger education. Please don’t take it for granted.