Mother’s Day: From the stepmom to the single mom, here’s a tribute to all the mothers we know and love

A mother’s work is never done, whether you’re a single mom taking on the world, fitting into a blended family or silently supporting your child from behind the wings. On Mother’s Day, here are some mothers who have captured our imagination.

It’s mom to the rescue for our Indian politicians, whatever their party affiliations may be. During state elections two years ago, as Aam Aadmi Party swept the Delhi polls, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s mother declared with evident pride that her son was an honest man. Today, another mother, that of former water minister Kapil Mishra, has accused Kejriwal of being a liar in a corruption case. Not so long ago, during the demonetisation exercise, Indians woke up to media coverage of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mother getting into a bank queue to collect cash, showing us that she — and by extension, her son — was just like us. And how can we leave out Rahul Gandhi, the poster boy for the dialogue “Mere paas Ma hai”!

These enlightened mothers were always a rare breed. Author and former High Court chief justice Leila Seth, who passed away recently, watched with a protective eye as her children achieved successes in unconventional careers, stepping out of her comfort zone to accommodate their life and career choices. Asha Devi, the mother of Nirbhaya, has stood strong as she waited for justice to finally be served against those who gang-raped her daughter. It hasn’t been an easy journey, but one full of courage. There are several mothers who are the wind beneath the wings for their sons and daughters, like Hiroo Johar, who takes on the challenge of co-parenting her son Karan Johar’s twins, born through surrogacy.

Did former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav’s troubles with father and former party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav begin because of some potent black magic by stepmother Sadhana? We seriously doubt those charges have merit, but we do hear that she’s the chief conspirator against her stepson. While some stepmothers can definitely be difficult to handle, there are others who fit in amicably with their blended families. Much like Melania seems to, with husband and US President Donald Trump’s brood of kids. A generation ago, when late Bollywood heartthrob Shammi Kapoor married Neela Devi after being widowed, she raised his kids as her own. Coming to today’s modern families, it’s heartening to see celebrities like Kareena Kapoor Khan and Kiran Rao socialise with their partner’s kids from previous marriages.

There have been many iconic mothers in Hindi films, from the long-suffering Nirupa Roy to the bubbly Farida Jalal and relatable mothers of today’s films, like in Kapoor & Sons, played by Ratna Pathak Shah. But the award for most powerful mother goes to Sivagami, who pits both Baahubali and Bhallaladev for the race to the throne in the Baahubali franchise, showing chinks in her armour only when her diktats cost Baahubali his life. Who says motherhood isn’t complicated?

These mothers are doing a great job, and they’re doing it alone! When actor Sushmita Sen posts a video dancing to Ed Sheeran’s Shape of You with younger daughter Alisah, it truly melts hearts. The former beauty queen set high standards when she adopted her two girls, and the trio certainly don’t look like they’re missing a man! Many years ago, an unmarried Neena Gupta went against societal norms to have her baby, now well-known designer Masaba Gupta. Single motherhood maybe more commonplace now, but that doesn’t make it any easier! Hats off to these fearless women.

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