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With the rampant commercialisation of Mother’s Day over the years, it can feel like a cash grab of an event where florists, restaurants, fashion brands and other businesses conspire to squeeze as many dollars as possible out of you. It’s easy to forget what Mother’s Day is all about: honouring and paying tribute to mothers and all that they do for their families. Whether you’re having a simple event or a big bash to mark the day, it should be about telling the most important woman in your life how much you love and appreciate her.
To celebrate the occasion, we asked some mums and dads for their thoughts on motherhood and what they’ll be doing on Mother’s Day.
Here’s what the mothers said:
How did you feel when you became a mother?
Jean Peh, mother of two children aged three and six: The feeling was indescribable, I was really over the moon. Excited, happy and overjoyed.
Ho Chia Hui, mother of two boys aged seven and 10: Becoming a mother has been like a roller coaster ride. It was a totally new experience with no expectations. It was exciting because of the newness; I didn’t know what to expect and what was in store. It really tested my threshold.
It made me more mature as well. Matters that used to be a big deal in the past became insignificant.
J.K., mother of two children aged two and four: Most amazing feeling in the whole wide world! Once you’re a mother, you really feel invincible physically and mentally.
Mrs Chew, mother of two girls aged 15 and 17: Three words best describe my feelings when I first became a mother.
Wonderment – In a state of wonderment, knowing that the little bundle of joy squirming around in my tummy over the last nine months is now my little bub whom I can now see and hold in my arms. Indeed, true to every aspect of being “fearfully and wonderfully made”.
Relief – The biggest fear of every parent is having a sickly child. So it was a relief to me that all digits were intact, and the baby was healthy and angelic-looking.
Responsibility – Overwhelmed with a sense of responsibility, knowing that this is an endless journey to provide and care for this little being for the rest of my life.
What is the most fulfilling part about being a mother?
Jean Peh: Seeing my little ones grow up healthy and happy.
Ho Chia Hui: Everything. Seeing the JOY in them, whether it’s preparing a meal for them, packing their school bags or watching a movie together.
J.K.: Playing such a critical role in moulding and shaping my child’s growing up years.
Mrs Chew: Seeing the core values that I have been instilling in them taking shape over their growing up years. I also continuously observe how they interact with people and will step in to correct or reproach when necessary. When faced with challenging situations, guiding them to access useful resources or tap on inner strengths to overcome their weaknesses is an on-going process. Seeing them overcome obstacles with confidence is always the icing on the cake.
What is your wish for your child/children?
Jean Peh: No big expectations, I just want them to be healthy and happy but most importantly, to possess these three key things in life – love, compassion and empathy.
Ho Chia Hui: Be happy. Love what they do.
J.K.: To always give their best in anything they’ve set their minds on achieving and to never lose their zest for life!
Mrs Chew: My wish for them is to be happy in doing what they are best in, be of good character and be able to contribute positively at work, in the community and in their personal social circles.
And now from the fathers:
What is the quality you admire most about your wife?
H.C. Leong, father of a 15-year-old girl: Her ability to support and love me in sickness and in health.
L.S. Gan, father of two girls aged five and one: Patience, dedication and being a great vacation planner.
N.C., father of two girls aged three-and-a-half years and nine months: She is a god-loving person who always puts others before herself.
M.K., father of two children aged nine and 12: Her patience and willingness to make sacrifices on a daily basis.
Ken Hay, father of two boys aged 11 and 17: Her frankness.
How will you celebrate Mother’s Day?
H.C. Leong: We don’t celebrate Hallmark holidays. However, there was one memorable occasion where we inadvertently did.
Once upon a time, we were out shopping at IKEA on a Sunday. I recalled we had a late lunch and by the time we decided to have dinner, it was pretty late; we were tired, and our daughter was cranky. We happened to pass by a Thai restaurant and figured we could order one or two bowls of tom yam soup and call it a dinner. Only when we sat down did we realise it was Mother’s Day, and the only thing on the menu was a super fancy multi-course Mother’s Day set dinner that was also extremely expensive.
Our daughter fell asleep right after drinking her milk, so I had to carry her on my nap throughout the remainder of the dinner, while we tried to finish the large meal and not fall asleep ourselves in the process. (No, we couldn’t finish the meal.)
Luckily it wasn’t Valentine’s Day (another Hallmark holiday), so at least it wasn’t super dark and I could still see what I was eating.
L.S. Gan: Bring the whole family out for lunch or dinner.
N.C.: A big hug from me and the children, and a nice family meal!
M.K.: I would gently encourage my children to be spontaneous and create a moment that is sincere and expresses their gratitude.
Ken Hay: Celebrate with a good meal at a restaurant.
What do you want to say to your wife on Mother’s Day?
H.C. Leong: Thank you.
L.S. Gan: You are a great and dedicated wife and mother who is always there to take care of our kids when I’m not at home. Have a beautiful Mother’s Day.
N.C.: You are an awesome mum! Thank you for loving us despite the headaches we cause you! The children and I thank God for you!
M.K.: “There is no way to be a perfect mother but a million ways to be a good one”, and you most certainly are one.
Ken Hay: Thank you for being understanding and taking care of the kids and me. I love you, always.
To all the mothers out there, Happy Mother’s Day!