Living: Mum’s the word

Celebrity mothers share their take on motherhood & parenting highs and lows

Raveena Tandon, actor, mother of four

On becoming a mother…
I was only 21 when I became a mother to my adopted daughters, Pooja and Chhaya. The mothering instinct instantly kicked in when I first met them. But I couldn’t have done it without my family’s support. I think a woman becomes a mother the moment she holds her baby…it is so natural. The instinct to nurture and care for something is immediate. The motherhood made me a kinder and a more compassionate person.

On her relationship with her kids…
My two older daughters are my best friends. My eldest is just 11 years younger to me, so she is more of a friend to me. With my younger ones, I can see myself saying the same things to them that my mother would have said to me. 

On raising daughters…
I was lucky to have daughters first. The mother-daughter bond is just so special. It is extremely satisfying and fulfilling experience to see them blossom into these confident, independent young women. Having sisters has also made my son Ranbirvardhan, a more understanding and sensitive boy. In fact, his teachers tell me how well behaved he is, when the other boys his age are naughty and boorish.

On values taught to the kids…
I always wanted my kids to be good human beings first. I have never told them to chase material success. I want them to be kind, generous and compassionate people first.

On parenting...
I was never big on baby talk. I always spoke to my kids on an equal footing. Most mothers say ‘no’ each time kids do something wrong, but they never explain why. I believe that for the kids to know right from wrong, you must first explain why something is wrong.

 

Juhi Chawla, actor, mother of two

On becoming a mother...
Growing up, I was only focused on what am I doing. I was taking risks because I think that is one of the qualities of the youth — you jump into situations, you’re not thinking too much. The adventure is exhilarating, you’ve nothing to lose. Now, after having kids, I look back and think of my parents. I’m comparing myself and my ways of parenting with theirs. I wonder if they had felt the same anxiety and emotions for me then that I feel for my children now. 

On her parenting style...
Somewhere I don’t find the need to be hugely strict with my children. I know that they are kind-hearted kids. I do try and guide them. I want them to learn the value of things. Today, our children are in a privileged position, and so it is easy for them to disrespect and disregard. I try to remind them that things don’t come easy in life. I try to set the right example for them, to guide them in the right direction.

On lessons learnt...
At the end of the day, you need to realise that no matter how much you wish your kids to be like you, it is important for them to follow their own dreams and passions. You have to let go and help them blossom into whatever they wish to be. I realise that my kids cannot live my dreams, they must have dreams of their own.

 

Shilpa Ganesh, star wife, mother of two 

On experience as a mother...
It’s been fantastic. Most of my friends tell me I should have been their mother. To the outside world, I come across as an outright rude person, but when it comes to my kids, I just go soft. I take care of whatever they need at this age. I want to make sure they enjoy their childhood and teenage years the most.

On her relationship with her kids...
I am more like a friend to them, especially with my daughter, Charithriya, because she understands me better. My son is only two-and-a-half years old and way too young. I go easy on Charithriya. I want her to understand that more than a mother, I am a friend to her, and she can talk to me about anything.

On motherhood...
It’s the most special gift a woman can get. I think we are truly blessed to experience the joy of carrying a child in our wombs. Men can never truly understand what it means to be a mother.

 

Ashwini Iyer Tiwari, filmmaker, mother of two

On her experience as a mother...
Motherhood is not the end of your outlook towards life. It the beginning of a new journey of discovering yourself and a little one. I don’t mind dirtying my hands in paints and exploring new places with my children.

On relationship with her kids...
We learn something new about each other every day. Thanks to my kids, I have discovered a different side of me.

On lessons learnt...
Motherhood has taught me a lot of patience. The fact that there is another being on this earth who is here because of you and you are here because of your mother is such an undefined experience. Once a mother forever a mother!

 

Priyanka Upendra, actor, mother of two

On becoming a mother...
It’s definitely been a life-changing experience. The thing is, once kids are born, your life belongs to them. My entire life revolves around my children. Motherhood makes one responsible because it’s not just about you anymore. The fact that my children look up to me has made me more responsible and disciplined. When children are young, you have to do everything for them. But as they grow up, parenting becomes more about understanding and guiding them. But every phase is about giving them, unconditional love.

On her relationship with her kids...
Right now, since my kids are entering their teenage years, I have become more like a friend to them. Because Upendra is busy, I spend a lot of time with them. Since both of us are in limelight all the time, it’s important that our kids know how important they are to us. Of course, we try to protect them from everything, but sometimes, we also let them be on their own. I am particular that my kids eat right, have strong values and a good education. Instead of pampering them gifts, I believe in spending some quality time with them.

On motherhood...
My children are my first priority in life. More than being a wife, a daughter or a daughter-in-law, I think the most important job I have right now is being a mother. It’s the closest to my heart. Uppi often complains that he always comes second for me, but I believe how we shape our kids now will help them throughout their life.

 

Swetha Menon, actor, mother to a five-year-old

On being a mother...
When you have a child, you settle down emotionally and life becomes a full circle. You become more patient; you are no longer short-tempered or overemotional. Once I became a mother, I started respecting my mother even more. I realised what my parents must have gone through to raise me. When I first saw Sabaiina after I gave birth, I hoped that I had been a good child growing up.

On her relationship with her daughter...
Today, Sabaiina is a five-year-old who has proper conversations with people and has her own personality. And when she talks to me, I wonder, ‘is she the little girl that I gave birth to?’ When I look into her eyes, I know that she is going to be my best friend.

On parenting...
The way I was brought up is different from the way I am raising Sabaiina. My parents treated me as an individual and gave me the freedom to think and express myself. This is one of the most important things that I am trying to inculcate in my daughter.

On lessons learnt...
I love the way Sabaiina interprets things. The way we, as adults, look at a situation and the way a child looks at it is so different. I won’t say that I learned something from her but rather that it is amazing to see things from her perspective.

 

 

As told to A Varsha Rao; Pooja Mahesh; Nasrin Modak Siddiqi & Arundhati Pattabhiraman

Liked the story?

  • 0

    Happy
  • 0

    Amused
  • 0

    Sad
  • 0

    Frustrated
  • 0

    Angry

Comments:

Living: Mum’s the word

0 comments

Write the first review for this !