As I laid in my bed tonight I suddenly remembered the mother of my friend. A university friend of mine, he was from the same year but different major with me. We were together in the swimming club of our university, and we were very close for several years of our studies.
He was a dear friend, a very dear friend. But his mother was an exception. I didn’t know his mother too well, but she left a deep impression in my heart. I have my utmost respect, appreciation and somehow love for this woman.
We never really talked. The only times we talked with each other were the times I called my dear friend at his home – no celular phone yet that time. I called him and it was always his mother picking up the phone,
“Hallo, may I speak with H, please?”
“Oh, H is sleeping. Who is this?”
“I’m Irene, Tante (Aunty), is it possible to wake him up? I really need to talk to him.”
“Yes, sure, please wait a minute.”
And there she’s gone calling her beloved son. And after that, I would spend his son’s time for at least 30 minutes long, chitted chatted about all nonsensical subjects ever existed in this world and on top of that, because I was using a public phone (it’s a personal phone of my boarding house and yet we have to pay to use it), I ALWAYS asked him to call me back after one minute talking. And he willingly did that!
Not only that, this very dear friend of mine was almost always available driving me everywhere for our club’s project. He’s someone who waited on the gate waiting for me until I went in my house to make sure I was safe inside. And no, we were not dating. And no we were not in love. He was simply a very good friend, almost like a big brother for me.
My point is, being a mother myself now, I don’t think I would be able to act like my friend’s mother did that time. She never sounded crossed when she picked up the telephone, although she knew that I would spend her beloved son’s time. She was always warm and welcoming in the very few opportunities I had to meet her, never had this look – ah, this is the girl who made my son her personal chauffeur. And on top of that, on every single Chinese New Year we had when we were still in university, this very dear friend of mine gave me a tin of cookies that was baked by his mother. And even several times after we graduated and moved to another city we got to meet and still I got my favorite Chinese New Year cookies!
I will never never never forget that very sweet gesture. And no, again, we were not in any romantic relationship. But I presume it takes a very kind heart to be able to give her own baked cookies to a girl who is not even her son’s girlfriend.
And she’s a woman of endurance. She’s basically a single mother raising 4 children, and looking at how her son turned out to be a very fine gentleman, I would say that she did a very good job! And it must be because she’s a fine woman herself.
I feel somehow melancholy remembering this woman. But I come to a conclusion that there are some special mothers here in this world that are not only being a good mother for her own children, but somehow able to radiate her motherhood beyond her own family and let her kindness felt by other children she gets to meet.
This memory became another call for me to review my own conduct as a mother. Not only I haven’t been reflecting a loving motherhood to my own children and need to learn more to do it right, but also being a mother is also a chance to provide love and safety for the friends of our children, or other children I get to meet in my life.