August 14, 2020 27 By Fatuma Hassan Hussein

I often hear people say that one is disadvantaged if they are physically handicapped or mentally or any form of disability, but I have never quite understood how to term the situation where one grows up without a mother, a father or even both of the parents. Isn’t that more disadvantageous?

Well, I know some people are going to differ with me on this but growing up without your mother by your side is more or less like an emotional disability, the trauma that comes with it is so deep like an abyss. As a girl child I know what it means to grow up without someone to call mother, that one person who’s love is always unconditional, so caring and concerned with her child’s every move.
Every time when I remember how growing up without my mum felt like I’d rather choose to be disadvantaged in any other way but not to live without a mother’s love and protection.

To those of you who may think that I’m exaggerating the whole thing, well, allow me to break it to you how growing up without a mother feels like or rather how it looked like.

Do you know that feeling of being woken up in the morning and how you are also tucked into bed at night with sweet stories being read to you better yet, how when you wake up in the morning and you’re sure that breakfast is ready due to the mouth-watering aroma of fried eggs or sweet potatoes that feels the air, how you don’t have to worry about your dirty laundry because you know mommy will have it sorted, and before you go to bed at night she’ll be right there making sure that you’ve taken your bath and fed. How during school meetings she will be seated at the front or how she will be there to defend you when you get into a fight with the neighbor’s kid even though you were the one who threw the first punch, not to mention how when she comes home from the market she will bring you your favorite snack or a new toy because that’s what mothers’ do for their children right?

Unfortunately for those of us who grew up without our mother’s by our side we cannot tell you how the luxury of all those things and activities felt like because we literally mothered ourselves and for us growing up without someone to call ‘mama’ was more like a punishment and the worst one for that case.

As if that is not enough, as a girl child growing up without a mother feels like salt is being added to an open wound. Do you know how sometimes you get all moody and the only person you wish to talk too is your mother because you are certain that she’ll understand what it is that you’re going through? Until when you just remember that you don’t have a mom to begin with. How about when you experience your first menstrual cycle and there is no one by your side to show you how to put on the sanitary towels or how to take care of your hygiene during that time. Also, do you remember that boy that you liked and you wanted to tell your mom all about him or that girl in your class whom you didn’t get along with and you just wanted to talk to your mother about so as get the advise whether to strangle her or not.

This may sound like some fantasy story from one of those fairytale movies for the one’s who did not grow up with a mother figure by their side. I do not need to mention that feeling when it’s ‘mother’s day’ and each of your friends is posting a picture of their mother and celebrating their presence with long captions whereas you do not have a picture of your mother let alone the juicy caption.

In other words growing up without your mom by your side is one of the worst experience that a child has to grow up and live with all their lives. If anything it should be added among the a thousand ways to die because one is likely to perceive themselves as walking dead. I would say that I’m sorry to my readers for making the whole scenario feel too much but I couldn’t find another better way to put what and how it really feels like growing up without a mother because at this point I’m certain that all of you can agree with me that it’s not a walk in the park neither is it a bed full of roses nurturing yourself.

With that, it’s my hope that for those of you who grew up with your mothers’ will learn to appreciate their presence in your lives while they are still around and also treating your friends, loved ones and those that you care about who grew up without their mothers with love and care because they need it much more than anything else in this world.

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