Sunday, 17 August 2014

Heart & Soul: Mummy dearest, my sparring partner

Faye Dunaway as the mother from hell in the 1981 film 'Mommie Dearest'.

Faye Dunaway as the mother from hell in the 1981 film 'Mommie Dearest'.

“I REFUSE to believe that I’m meant to do ordinary things, let alone marry an ordinary person.”

That’s what I told my mother the other day. I used to imagine wearing a wedding gown fit for a queen even though I’m Indian. I can’t imagine how my mother would react seeing me in a white gown and not a traditional sari, draped in gold chains and garlands as heavy as rocks around my neck for my wedding. Well, I’m allergic to gold anyway. I got a three-day “lecture” for pointing that out.

I was home for my semester break for about two weeks, and had intended to catch up on some peaceful reading and beauty sleep of which I’ve been deprived of in recent weeks due to my final examinations. However, I could not keep still without picking a fight with my mother.

Not so long ago, a squabble like this would have been a long-winded argument that would carry on until we ended up giving each other the “silent treatment”. But now it has turned into a fight-­for-­fun distraction. It’s weird to say that I enjoy arguing with my mum, because many of our arguments are baseless anyway. For example, she would say I should not wear anything black because it’s bad luck, and instead, I’ll ask if I should dye my hair purple.

She wanted me to get her a cooking book just because the pictures looked so interesting (which I bought for her anyway), but refused to try the recipes because “she would need butter from Australia and cheese from New Zealand”.

When I asked her why I couldn’t have a boyfriend when I turned 21 last year, she said I had to graduate first. She had been using this excuse since I was 14: that I needed to pass my PMR, my SPM when I was 17, my foundation studies when I was 18, and now my degree.

On the other hand, I merely view a relationship as a platform for emotional balance, and it has nothing to do with education. So, you understand now why there’s seems to be an eternal debate between us.

This time round, I told her that I was in a relationship with an actor from Singapore whom I had met on Facebook. I showed her photos of my handsome “boyfriend” (whom I had googled and saved before coming back home). I even set it as my laptop wallpaper to make it seem real and illustrate how devoted I was to him. That was the extent I went to just to make my mum’s blood boil. I told her I couldn’t stand marrying a normal guy. And that I despised doctors, lawyers and ordinary working males. I told her that they were too mainstream. (Of course, I was jesting.)

However, to my surprise, she giggled and was quite excited when I told her his occupation, interests and that we had been dating. She didn’t even mind that the age gap between us was 10 years! She was happy that my “boyfriend” was quite good-looking and thanked her lucky stars that her grandchildren would look good! She even challenged me to bring my so-­called boyfriend to meet her if he had the nerve to come forward.

The day after, she kept pestering me to to test if I was telling the truth. Since I needed to rest and get my beauty sleep, I told her the truth and I ended up with another three-day lecture for deceiving the queen of the house. She told me she was quite aware that I was pulling a fast one all along, and that no actor would want to marry an “over­dramatic actress” like me. Indeed, sarcasm and drama run in our family.

And yes, I’m always excited and happy to be home!

Tags / Keywords: Heart Soul , believe , mother


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