Jai Mata Di

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What did you get your mum for Mother’s Day? asks DEVNA LUTHRA

Everyone says their mother is special. My Mum, or my Mataji as I refer to her (a deeply entrenched remnant from Hindi School, thanks Mala Aunty) is especially special as she comes with a certain flaw. She is very hard to buy gifts for.
Mother's Day.Indian Link
I stroll past the shops with bright displays, advertising their hardbound pastel-coloured Swedish-designed organic paper notebooks that are ‘Perfect for Mum this Mother’s Day!’ And I know if I bought one of these diamond-encrusted notebooks (that’s got to be the reason they are so expensive, right?!) she would give me a big hug and a “Thank you, darling!”
But I can just guess what will be going through her head.
‘Who needs such fashionista paper? Scrap paper is fine for me. I’ll put this in the gifts drawer and give it one of my friends on their birthdays.’
Mataji: 1. Billion dollar consumer market advertising: 0.
Mother's Day.Indian Link
What about a nice spa voucher? Actually no…paying someone to press her feet and paint her toenails besides me seems more like a present to myself. And I know my Mataji too well, she will keep putting off the day she will use the voucher until two hours before it expires, giving it to me at the last minute to ‘use today or the money will go to waste’.
Breakfast in bed is not ideal either. The first thing my Mataji does when she awakens is brush her teeth. Before speaking to any of us. Before bending down to pat the dog. Before the first sip of chai and exhaled ‘ahhhh’ that follows. Even before checking her phone! (I told you…special, right?)
Mother's Day.Indian Link
She’s suffered through enough of those torturous Mother’s Day mornings, where a six-year-old and a three-year-old have taken over the kitchen and told her not to get out of bed until they bring up her ‘surprise’. (This following a week of ‘casual questions’ of what she likes to eat for breakfast if she could choose anything in the world, and frantic phone calls to dad at work asking what a vada is, and can he bring some home.)
Mother's Day.Indian Link
And fellow kids take note, under no circumstance should anyone give their mother cleaning supplies or any such derivatives… never. As Lilly Singh (‘Superwoman’ on YouTube) so poetically put it: “Don’t give your mum cleaning supplies as presents. It’s like giving a live chicken a packet of flavoured seasoning and saying ‘you know what to do with it’.”
So, where does this leave us? Let’s make a checklist of components required in this gift.
*Must make her smile and feel genuinely happy to keep it
*Must alleviate stresses in her daily life
*Must be something useful
*Must be something she actually enjoys
*Must show the essence of being a mother
Ah ha! After careful analysis, it seems the only logical present is something that she’s had all along.
It’s me!

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