7 life lessons I learned from my mother

It has been almost a year since she left for her heavenly abode. My first love, my first teacher, my creator… my mother. It was quite difficult to digest that she is no more, but her teachings have helped me in living this part of life without her. She has been the strongest pillar of our family, holding everyone together, and we all are blessed to be a part of such a strong-willed person!

I am sharing a little bit of her life and the lessons that she taught us. Hope it will inspire many of you.

She wanted to but couldn’t study any further after her school due to financial issues in her family. Got married at a young age and shortly due to some mishappening, the marriage was soon over. She got remarried in the early 1980s. My father is a hero for us for making this happen at a time when marrying a widow was kind of taboo. My mother faced a lot of trouble for this initially, but due to her nature and positive attitude, that tough time also passed by. She became stronger!

My father met with a tragic accident, she took care of my father, did all the household work, as well as tried her best to help my father with his work. This was in addition to the three kids she had to handle, and the fourth one was about to be born in a few weeks (me). None of the “family” members helped her at that time. She became stronger.

As mentioned in my book, she used to walk to the market instead of taking a rickshaw, so that she can save some money and buy something for us on her way back home. There were times when there was only 1 mango distributed among 6 members of our family. She took the center part with the seed of the mango with almost no pulp. She used to eat her dinner at the last so that there is enough food for everyone else, but later I came to know that she had eaten only half a roti or only a spoonful of curry so many times.

Time changed, the worst part was over, and the future was even better. All my three sisters were married, I was pursuing my MBA, and was just waiting for the final year to get over so that I can get a good placement offer and support my family financially. When suddenly, I came to know that my mother was not well, her health was deteriorating with every passing hour. After a lot of consultations from our small town to big cities and then to the capital, we came to know that she was suffering from kidney failure. Life’s final test was waiting for her.

Both her kidneys had shrunken. We thought this was going to be the toughest moment of our life. She will soon leave us. But her strong will, my father’s love for her, and my sisters’ support gave her a new life. This happened in 2016-2017. This not only made her stronger but changed her attitude towards life.

She was operated on in January 2017, and from then onwards medicines became a big part of her diet. Her health was not very good after that. Then came COVID 19, and we all were stuck in lockdown. She couldn’t get her regular checkups and during the peak of the 2nd wave in April 2022, we had to get her admitted to a hospital, and on 5th May 2022, she left for her heavenly abode.

Losing a mother can be the most painful time in anyone’s life, but on the other hand, it would have been a relief for her as she was suffering a lot. This and the teachings from her whole life made us stronger!

Some simple life lessons that she taught us and practicing them has removed the heaviness from my life, and made me a calm, understanding, and practical person.

Teaching No 1 –

Om Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah
Sarve Santu Niraamayaah |
Sarve Bhadraanni Pashyantu
Maa Kashcid-Duhkha-Bhaag-Bhavet |
Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih ||

Meaning :

May all sentient beings be at peace,
May no one suffer from illness,
May all see what is auspicious, may no one suffer.
Om peace, peace, peace.

She used to tell me to recite this when I was young. I never understood the meaning, therefore never practiced it. But now, I recite this daily in the morning and it gives such a nice feeling, a positive vibration. It removes negativity right from the time I wake up.

Teaching No 2 –

The first thing to do in the morning is to thank the supreme power for giving us another day. If we understand that each day is an opportunity, things get better and we try to become even more productive.

Teaching No 3 –

The second thing in the morning is to touch the ground before stepping on it, and thank Mother Earth for providing us with home, food, water, air, and whatnot! This teaches us gratitude. When you practice this, you start practicing gratitude throughout the day. Trust me, there is nothing better than gratitude to live a happy life.

Teaching No 4 –

Be thankful and happy for what you have, and don’t cry for what you don’t have. We generally have most of the things as per our needs, but our wants can never be satisfied. Those who compare their life with others, or who only want to be happy when they achieve something very big in their life, mostly stay sad or depressed most of the time. As mentioned in my book, enjoy the smallest of the achievements of your life and you’ll always be happy.

Teaching No 5 –

Similar to the last one, she used to say that never borrow money from anyone. In Hindi, we have a saying that, “जितनी चादर लम्बी हो ,उतना ही पैर फैलाना चाहिए” which means that your expenses should not exceed your income. Although she did not go to any college, she taught me that the first expense from income should be towards savings. This simple teaching has helped me a lot and it has become a habit now. Now, these things are being taught to MBA students in “Personal Finance”.

Teaching No 6 –

Don’t use bad language for anyone. It won’t affect them, but us! Anger eats us from the inside and as we all know that stress is the root cause of so many diseases. Stay away from anger and stress, and ignore or stay away from such people who are the cause of these two things.

Teaching No 7 –

Smile! Even after so much that she went through in her life, we always saw her smiling. A little smile has the power to change everything. It not only brings positivity within us but also spreads happiness around us. Try it! 🙂

Tell your feelings to the people around you, you never know what will happen the next moment. Life is unpredictable.

I wrote a poetry for her and she loved it, I’m glad that I was able to express my feelings and love for her – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuXdI3HiKZM&ab_channel=VedantKhandelwal

4 Responses

  1. Megha khandelwal says:

    She was very strong… I still can’t believe that she is not with us, bcz as u said her teachings r with us.. she was amazing.. unse jyada strong lady maine nhi dekhi, cz problems were always around her, bt she always used to smile .. shadi k pehle tk kbhi pta hi nhi tha mjhe ki unki life me itni problems bhi thi, bt jaise jaise pta chalta gya ki how she spent her life, she became an example for me… And thanks a lot to u, u explained her whole life, very beautifully..

  2. Shashank Srivastava says:

    She’ll be sitting in the heavens and feeling proud to have a son like you.
    Stay strong and keep smiling mere bhai as she did.

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