This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Radhika Mathur. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

It Takes A Superwoman To Be A Mom Like You

By Radhika Mathur:

In the very busy lifestyle that all of us follow…daily assignments and targets, computers and mobile screens occupy our entire day; leaving us with little or no time to notice, acknowledge, appreciate and show love.

Very recently, I was forced out of this busy routine when I fell sick. It was the day my Mom took me to visit two doctors to find the right person to diagnose my sickness. On the way, she stopped at a grocery store. That’s when I saw it, outside the store, which in the evening becomes a hub for Moms. I saw a Mom driving her Father-in-Law to the doctor, another with a son in front and a daughter behind on a scooter and another walking to the grocery store holding a little boy’s finger. Some of them were my Mom’s age and some of them were close to my age. It was at that moment that it struck deep inside me; “I was surrounded by Superwomen”.

supermom

Every time we’re in trouble, we wait for a superhero to come rescue us. Superhero, a concept so fictional, that we stop believing in it on growing older. We never realize that it’s superheroes who have taken the courage to give birth and raise us. Our busy lives, our successes are all the result of how these superheroes raised us.

It’s irritating sometimes, when Moms keep asking us when we’ll eat, and yet, when we have flu, it’s just her hand we want to hold. Whatever we ask for, not once does a Mom turn around and say “No, I won’t do that for you.” Some of us also feel that if our Moms are at home or are doing a part time job, they have ruined their lives and we won’t do the same as we’ll be career oriented.

I’m also at a phase in my life where I’ve been thinking of some life plans and career choices. I realized that I don’t have the courage to build a family, take care of someone other than me and basically, do the things that my Mom did. It’s not always social pressure or not being modern or not studying abroad that makes a woman make this choice. Trust me, it is irritating to keep wondering when your child will eat, to take care each time s/he falls sick and to always say yes to make a midnight meal or cook breakfast and lunch early in the morning. And this is not a blind decision one makes. It’s a lifestyle and a career choice, which plain and simple takes COURAGE.

It takes courage to be a mom, to build a family and to take care of a household. It may not relate to the ‘modern society’ you have created in your mind, but nonetheless, they made these choices and took these decisions for us. What we generally think of as their ‘duty’ is a conscious decision they took. It takes a Superwoman to do this! To go through child birth and to take care of someone all their lives.

This Mother’s Day, I want to acknowledge the Superwoman my Mother is — for giving birth to me and my brother, for all the care she’s given us even though she’s struggled with her family, for forcefully making some choices as a daughter-in-law, yet never letting it compromise with the love she has for us. And after raising us as two strong individuals, she has begun standing up for herself. No woman asks for it or is made for it. She takes a conscious decision, goes through it, lives through it and is still a strong individual as herself.

At work, away from my Supermom, I have another Supermom, who’s running between her aspirations and vision for a better world for children, and is running between two organizations and is still running a household, is always there for her children, and amazingly also for her colleagues. I want to acknowledge her superpowers too.

This Mother’s Day, look around you. Acknowledge the superwomen around us. Wish them a Happy Mother’s Day and remember to thank them.

You must be to comment.
  1. Reeta Nyati

    Amazing Radhika beta and beautifully written, genuinely coming straight from the heart . Blessyou beta

    1. Radhika Mathur

      Thank you Reeta Aunty 🙂

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

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MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

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Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
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