From Ma, With Love #5 | Don’t You Know?

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From Ma, With Love is a campaign celebrating recollections of feminist tales and lessons, passed down to us by our mothers, this Mother’s Day. The first edition of this compilation has 16 heartwarming stories. ‘Don’t you Know?’ by Prerana Kamat is the fifth in this series. You can download the entire publication here.

Mumma, you believed in feminism and you didn’t even know.

When you looked down proudly acknowledging me as your daughter

And not your long lost son,

Telling me not to shy away from the male pharmacist when my period began.

Letting me take part in all the activities with my brothers

And shouting at us for the mess we had made.

 

I admire you,

For the way, you can hold your ground,

The way you tell me I don’t have to wax

To please people around.

For making me comfortable enough to walk in my own skin, body hair and all,

For teaching me how to work with electricals and letting me fall.

For boosting my confidence to go about with my face bare,

Pimples and acne scars no longer give me a scare.

 

I appreciate you,

For not letting me believe that there are separate toys for boys

And not degrading me for my choice.

For letting me enjoy all the sports

On days I felt dejected, thank you for being my voice.

 

I wish I could go about painting a flawless picture of you

But alas! I cannot since it won’t be the truth,

On days when you bow down to the patriarchal society

And don’t put up a fight,

Makes me wonder, was everything a beautiful lie?

Then the next day you go about enlightening our family, of wrongs and rights

Leaving me confused, yet filled with delight.

 

“Don’t laugh at mean jokes, it’s not funny.”

“Carry a handkerchief, your nose is runny.”

“Don’t slouch, sit up straight.”

“Remember, you need to help me with dinner so don’t be late.”

I smirk as you nag my brother,

I think to myself, you are a fine mother!

 

Mumma, you believe in feminism and you don’t even know,

Mumma, you are a feminist and it shows.

Rohang Mishal.

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