The Best of What I Am, She Made

My mother and I have always had a fraught relationship; she isn’t on Facebook, so won’t see this, but I think she’d agree.

My friend Roshani, who knows us both very well, says that there’s more of Jacintha Mohanraj in me than I want to admit, and probably that’s right. Both of us strong-willed, hard-working, passionately engaged with our communities. Intensely stubborn.

Both of us generous too, I think, most of the time. Amma is always ready to stay up late and cook another dish to bring to the party; if she could, she’d feed everyone. She’d feed the world. All of that in me is from her.

We have some serious points of divergence, but this Mother’s Day, I want to acknowledge that much of the best of what I am, she made.

It can’t have been easy, crossing the world, and then raising me in America. Amma has always been committed to being the best mother she knows how to be.

These days, I try to pass along the best of her to my children too.

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