Silk Carnations 


It’s was Mother’s Day yesterday.  My phone vibrated non-stop since early morning – girlfriends were sending me Mother’s Day messages, with photos of flowers and the joy of motherhood.  My second son sent a disappearing instagram message from Iceland which disappeared before I even knew what was going on. He’s away and I am glad he thought of me. 

A friend posted on Facebook that she already had the best Mother’s Day gift: her children are healthy and happy.  Another declared she doesn’t want any flowers nor cakes, just kind children.  I salute them for being so unconditional with their maternal love. I wish I m like them. 

This morning, day after Mother’s Day, I found three stalks of silk carnations strewn on the dining table,  the same stalks I’ve seen sticking out of my youngest son’s school bag. Since he had wished me verbally yesterday morning,  I had assumed the flowers were meant for someone else. So when he came down for breakfast this morning,  I asked what are those flowers.  For many times,  I find discarded stuff from my children on the dining table,  waiting for me to either keep,  dispose,  or recycle. He said in the usual flippant manner that they were for me. And no, they were neither presented to me nor handed over despite being a day late.  If you are not a mother, then imagine seeing roses on the dining table after Valentine’s Day while your lover has his breakfast and replies that the roses are for you,  only he forgot to give you for Valentine’s. 

My first thought was that he wanted me to dispose or recycle the flowers, and I didn’t want them.  To know that they’re for me made me weep with sadness.  It made my motherhood so pathetic. 

My classmate-chatgroup have deemed me ungrateful,  for many mothers don’t even get any acknowledgement. They want me to see how blessed I am, late or otherwise. 

I am still navigating the misty path of gratitude ahead, trying to hold on to my stalks of silk carnations. 

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About vickychong

Just an ordinary woman.
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6 Responses to Silk Carnations 

  1. Richard says:

    Love is letting those we care about be themselves and not imposing our own conditions on them ❤

    • vickychong says:

      I guess I don’t know what love is then. Isn’t it funny how a gift can bring both happiness and sadness, depending on circumstances? I m also trying to understand my emotion. Hope it’s not a symptom of menopause and I hate to use sexist excuses like that.

  2. Sjaak says:

    Hi Vicky,

    The nicest presents are the ones you like and expected. But the unexpected ones can also be very nice, when you didn’t expect that at all. But mother’s day should not be one day but all days.
    Once a year the shops will get advance of this special day. It will bring some extra money in business. Money makes the world go round, they say. But actually money does nothing. You can’t eat it, drink it or do anything with it. It is just coins, a piece of paper or your bank account with a figure on it. Love and the caring thought about friends are more valuable than just presents and money. Why doesn’t have a Buddistic monk (or nun) any money, because money can make you unhappy and is unreal. Well happy mother’s day every day, Vicky.

    The thought of friend,
    Sjaak

    • vickychong says:

      Thanks Jack for the wise words. I understand the commercialization of special days but I guess it’s something only women have that men would not understand. Still, I would try to be mindful of my thoughts and emotion. I wonder what Ajahn Brahm would tell me. 🙂

      • Sjaak says:

        Ajahn Brahm had once took some given money. But his wishlist became so big, that this amount of money could not cover for all his expenses. So he gave the money back to this particular person and found out that money made him unhappy with too much worries. A monk can’t accept any money, so he made once this mistake and never again. By the way money is a measurement of welth or what you earn by working for it. The funny thing is that the “real” value of money can vary in an instant by emotion or bad/good news. An inch/meter, as example, stays always the same, but the value of money can fluctuate. I wonder who invented money anyhow? A man or woman? Well advanced civilizations have invented this concept. However at some temples the monkeys trade their stolen stuff from tourists for food and drinks. That has more value for them than stuff, coins or banknotes. So who is more clever? In this case the monkey.

        It is maybe a monk(ey) business. I hope you will smile, Vicky. Writing just for fun. :-).
        I hope you don’t mind my view about this.

        Sjaak.

  3. vickychong says:

    Hi. I like your wisdom and honesty. Sometimes I am too sensitive. Blame it on hormones. (I hate to use the sexist excuse but it’s true.)
    I will smile more. Ajahn Brahm said it takes less muscles! 😀

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