My mum’s birthday is approaching soon. When we last spoke, she asked for me not to send flowers, or spend money on gifts as she has “everything”…typical mum. It got me thinking what I could give her as a birthday present, so I decided to start writing and here it is, eight hundred words about you and for you, mum. Like many other expats here in Abu Dhabi, we are far from family – so as much as I may want to, I can’t just turn up on mum’s doorstep to take her for a meal or help her with a simple chore like grocery shopping. I am a believer that actions speak louder than words, but on this occasion I think perhaps these words may be a better expression of my birthday wishes to my precious mum.
I also hope the acts as a reminder for those lucky enough to have that special someone in life to make sure and let them know how much they mean to you. So I may just send those flowers, chocolates, and little gifts that are a token gesture of my love and gratitude. I want to see you enjoy them whilst we both can and not wish later that I had done so when I had the chance.
My mum’s kindness, support, and dedication towards my sisters and I has been the most constant things in my life. Being blessed now with a little daughter of my own, I have some idea of how motherhood can be both a trial and joy at the same time. How you managed to gracefully juggle looking after the family, our home, and a full time job I will never be able to figure out. And yet I can not think of a time when you were not there to listen, advise, and pray for me. As a child the comfort and safety you gave me through your loving actions and words has been immeasurable, and this has continued throughout adulthood. But only now that we are both older, I understand that you don’t have all the answers all the time (nobody does), but you always will be the one who knows best.
Your support has not just been during the hard times and life changing decisions, but also the simpler things like supplying a recipe or most recently, how to apply hair dye to cover greys! And in speaking for myself and on behalf of my siblings, I am so sorry for the times we may have caused you hurt or if you had to hear harsh words because to us. All I can say is that while some things in life may not quite have turned out the way we planned – career choices, relationships, and so on, I really did hit the Jackpot when it came to mums. I’ll even go so far as to say, (and please accept this as praise for all the hard work and sacrifices you have made for us), though we may not believe in reincarnation, if I were to come back to this world in another life I would want to come back again only as your daughter.
The love in your soulful green eyes that you had for your children is now the same you have for your grandchildren – I am so glad that we can share this gift of happiness and life through them with you. When my own daughter is older and can comprehend better, I hope that she feels even a portion of the love and kindness you showered on my sisters and I, and that she recognizes her luck in that it’s a lifetime’s worth. There is so much to express, and these words will never be enough but they go some way towards showing you the depth of thankfulness I have for everything you have done and still do for me, and how much I love you.
Beyond being a mum to me, I can now better appreciate the bravery you exhibited as a woman during times of adversity; you have shown such dignity and courage that it truly magnifies your beautiful persona. I know that reading this will bring tears to your eyes, as it has done for me in writing, but I am so glad that I have done so and that you have an idea of what I feel. I can only hope that one day my own daughter will read this and share the same sentiments for me – what bigger compliment for a mother than to have her daughter recognize what a great job she has done and what more can a mum ask?
So, Happy Birthday darling Mum! I salute you, I adore you, and I am so very blessed that you are mine.