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A woman of extraordinary strength
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March 21, 2007

On March 8,  Women's Day, we invited readers to celebrate the woman who made a significant difference to their lives. We asked them to tell us why this woman was special and send us a photograph. This series features the best entries.

All mothers, by their very nature, are good and inspire their children.

Some are superwomen. Some are not. But one thing is certain; all mothers are strong pillars of a good and successful family.

Our mother is one such person. She is just a matriculate from a vernacular medium. She is a 66-year-old widow now but maintains her 'strength' for herself and for the family.

She was a solid pillar of support for my father in his days of struggle. She would keep awake till 4 am in the morning everyday, helping him complete the work he used to take up part time along with his regular private service.

We are seeing good days due to our father's hard work, coupled with the shoulder-to-shoulder support of our mother.

Today, my younger brother is a successful engineer. And my sister is a manager with a company. I am 45 year old, practiscing labour consultancy, and usually return home by 11.30 pm.

Our mother goes to bed by 10.30 pm, but always keeps her ears open/ alert to my footsteps, so that she can wish me good night when I pass by her room to enter into mine. After she confirms that I have reached home, she retires for a good night's sleep.

She usually gets up by 2 am in the morning every day. Her routine starts with winding up her bed, followed by cleaning her bedroom, then the drawing-cum-dining room. She then cleans the mess in the spare bedroom that my young daughter uses during the day for her studies, music, hobbies, etc.

She goes to the gurudwara daily between 3.30 am to 3.45 am and returns at about 6.45 am. Then she prepares a cup of tea for herself. This is her second cup of the day. She has the first at about 2.30 am, which she prepares herself. My wife and I sometimes try to give her tea before 6.45 am, but we fail most of the time. She is quicker than us.

Then, she sleeps for some time before joining us at the breakfast table by 9.30 am.

In the morning, she completes the home accounts and other bank related work of our family business. She co-ordinates with my wife about the household work, planning/ budgeting/ maintaining of all bank-related work except our personal accounts, which we manage.

The general welfare of the house is her responsibility. She manages the bank work of her younger son (my younger brother), who is an NRI, and keeps it in order. Following up with me to keep the same updated is an important part of her daily routine.

She has taken on the responsibility of the religious rituals relating to the small gurudwara in our residence, including cleaning it regularly with her own hands. Changing the clothes of Granth Sahibji and doing the daily sewa of Granth Sahibji forms an integral part of her spiritual existence.

After all this is done daily, she socialises with some good natured, mature and responsible friends and also attends kitty parties. She is revered in her circle as a person of wisdom; everyone seeks her counsel.

She is one of the most sought-after person for reading/recitation in the akhand path programmes where our holy Granth is read for religious purposes.

She does all this and much more, which I may have inadvertently omitted, in spite of the fact that she has severe arthritis that has totally immobilised her knees; they need immediate replacement. Even though her arthritis is very serious, she travelled alone to Dubai to see her new grandchild just a few weeks ago. 

She is a Libran, born on October 15 and shares her birthday with our President, APJ Abdul Kalam.

Celebrating Women: The series
Where there's a will, there's a way
'She refused to be orthodox'

'My sister created my future'
'My wife taught me responsibility'

Don't miss!
Women's Day special

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