A dash of Pepper…

…with a splash of Mint


Posted by Pepper on November 28, 2017

is the day my mom leaves for India. After three and a half months with us, it is finally time for her to leave. I know most parents have an inbuilt nurturing instinct that compels them to care for their children, but I can’t even put in words the kind of care I have received beneath her wings. It’s been months since I cooked, did dishes, laundry or changed sheets. And as exhausting as it is given our circumstances, being forced to take on the mantle myself is not what will make me miss her the most.

What I will miss the most is the freedom she gave me to take liberties with her. I knew I could count on my mom to help out in times of need, but my mom stepped in even when needs didn’t exist. Did I need to take an hour long bath when even a 5 minute shower comes at a premium? No, but I would often tell her, ‘Mama, I am done with this. Deal with it alone while I park myself in the bath tub’, and she would actually encourage me to get away despite knowing how hard it is to juggle with two crying babies all alone.

Did I need to sleep in even after 10 am despite having had a relatively good night? No, but there would be times where I would say I don’t want to wake up, and she would pat me back to sleep at the cost of driving herself into a tizzy as she washed bottle parts, ran to tend to Cotton as he yelled, ran back to finish chopping her onion, rushed to feed Candy when she got cranky, ran back to get Cotton’s bottle out of the warmer before it got too hot and so and so forth. Yes, she would run her own private circus for the sake of my beauty sleep.

‘Mama, I’m hungry’, I’d say and she would make sure I eat first while she held the babies. ‘Mama, I’m sick of cleaning poop and don’t feel like it anymore’ and she would tell me to take a break while she would take care of the dirty bums for the day.Β  ‘Mama, I have a headache’ and she would apply balm on my forehead and give me a head massage. ‘Mama, the babies just refuse to sleep’, I would go to her room at 4 am and complain. And she would gladly wake up and take the baby I was handing over. ‘Mama, I feel like buying myself a new pair of jeans’, and she would assure me she could manage two babies while Mint and I went shopping.

My mom allowed Mint and me to be children. She literally took care of 4 kids. All of that will end tomorrow. My MIL arrives the next day. Can I really tell my MIL I don’t feel like cleaning poop without being subject to a few kilos of judgement? Can I tell her I want to sleep in even after 10 in the morning, or tell her I want do indulge in frivolous activities like shopping while she managed the kids? Most certainly not. After all, I am supposed to be a responsible and caring mother who is unfazed by baby poop or a lack of good jeans.

My MIL is going to stay with us for 6 months, and while I genuinely appreciate the help she is willing to offer, I am also worried as I enter this period of transition. Let me also say that our relationship with the in-laws hasn’t exactly been spectacular. We’ve been riding on rough waters ever since we expressed our desire to adopt a baby. You would think things would get better since we actually ended up having biological kids, but then we chose to give the kids my last name and things went south again.

We’re still in the thick of a storm as we convince the in-laws that no, Mint has not denounced his family (their words) or changed their family name altogether (!) by giving the kids my last name. Mint and I are trying to deep breathe and calmly point out to them how supremely sexist their thought process is. It has been very unpleasant. So I have no idea how the MIL’s trip will pan out. Please do wish us well.

Meanwhile, I will try to hold on to the good times we had with my mom around. There is absolutely nobody who can pamper you the way your own parents do. Here is a picture of all of us, my mama sitting in the midst of Mint and me, as we hold our babies. She has literally been the central pillar of our lives these past few months.


20 Responses to “Tomorrow..”

  1. Hope the MILs visit goes well. I think – if she is traditional- she might actually let you rest more, and take over the load. At least that’s what I’ve seen with MILs/Mothers down south.
    Do rest, and take care πŸ™‚

  2. Ranjini said

    My in-laws and I have an amazing relationship. Even then, things got a bit complicated once Mihi came along. I don’t mean to scare you but I would probably start with with having zero expectations and work your way up. But woman, you need help. A little help. A lot of help. Some help. Any help at all. But help, you need. And this is coming from someone who drove herself crazy wanting to do it all even when she had help around.
    Are you on Instagram? I want to see the babies! πŸ™‚

    • Pepper said

      I’m not on Instagram, yet. But I get asked by the whole world to join the bandwagon. I probably will, sometime. Not sure πŸ™‚ Meanwhile if you want to see the babies we can connect on email, or if you ever visit SF/Bay Area, let’s catch up.

      • Ranjini said

        Yea Instagram is neat.
        Also, I should have probably started with this. We moved to CA last month. πŸ™‚ We live in San Jose. We are in India this month though and will be back in Jan and let’s catch up then?

        If there is anything I can bring back for the babies from here, let me know.

        Hope is all is well at home.

  3. Shreya said

    This pic is precious…n I agree with you 100% that no one can pamper you like your parents. I had my in laws too to help me out…The only thing I focused on was my child is getting the love of grandparents and that I don’t have to live with them forever and lastly this is my only opportunity to do something for my husband’s parents considering my husband does so much for my family….that gave me strength to be good to them despite of multiple disconnects in my head… Hope you have a good time…

  4. Minu said

    Heartiest congratulations to you, Mint and your entire family for the wonderful addition of Cotton Candy! I’ve been following your blog for sometime now, this is the very first time I’m dropping in a comment! I’m located in bay area as well πŸ™‚
    Your post took me back to my delivery and postpartum time (3 years back) when my mom did exactly the things that your mom did in past few months! Moms are the best in this world!
    It will not be easy but it will all be so worth it! Enjoy motherhood and spread the love!

  5. Preethi said

    I can very well relate to this post. My mom has been my pillar of strength after my delivery and let me have my β€˜me’ time whenever I needed.
    Wishing and praying that your relationship with in-laws would get better and they get to understand your perspective too. I am sure the Cotton and Candy would help you in bridging the gap πŸ™‚

  6. Geetha said

    Although I don’t know you, I have been following your blog and absolutely love it. I am so happy for you and your family. Sending you good vibes from D.C. congratulations again!

  7. Aarti said

    Good luck Pepper… all will turn out well …..i am sure you will bond even more with your MIL .

  8. Having seen and known Aunty, I think it is safe to say you got one of the BEST Moms , hands down! Heck, my own wouldn’t pamper me sleeping past 10 or refuse cleaning poop, especially with twins to care for πŸ™‚
    Wishing you peaceful transition with the MIL and the least amount of clash, since that’s unavoidable anyway. May there be peace and lots of smiles {{Hugs}}

  9. No one can beat mom’s pampering. I can totally relate to you coz when I moved back with my son to my parents house I felt that my mom engulfed with her blanket of love πŸ™‚ And I don’t think the MIL can ever give you that warmth.
    Having said that Pepper, you have handled sooooooo much now that you will be able to sail through her visit πŸ™‚ I have full faith in you. Will share one nugget of perspective with you. Sometime when I would find myself reacting to my MIL, I would pause and ask myself “would i have reacted the same way if my own mom said/did that to me”? Sometimes the answer was “No. I am over reacting”. Sometimes that tiny pause helped me in responding to her instead of reacting. πŸ™‚

    Loads of hugs my dear and looking forward to your next post.

  10. metherebel said

    Good luck pepper!!! Sending you best wishes and hugs!!

  11. Ashwathy said

    Your mother takes unconditional love and caring to a different level altogether. God bless her!
    And yes the transition would be tough, but hopefully you will ease into having your MIL around. Any help is welcome, like we discussed!

  12. wifeathome said

    U r lucky then pepper … not all moms are like that…


  13. BowAndArrow said

    Oh wow! Heartiest Congratulations to you and your hubby! These two cutie pies are too adorable!
    I had been following your blog for a long time, from Singapore, and this is the first time ever messaging you. The last post i read of yours was on your sister’s visit and i got totally tied up by my own 2 yr old. So imagine my pleasant surprise when I saw this post of yours! Anyways I am very happy for you.
    And definitely a thumbs up for you on bringing an adorable pair to this world. Take care!

  14. Maya said

    Please update. Looking forward to your new year update πŸ™‚

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