What I Learned From My Mother’s Walks Not Talks #Walk 14

Preparing for me my trousseau my mother did unbelievable effort in a very short period of time. I got engaged and in six months I got married. During these months my mother and I spent time together more than usual, looking for furniture, fabrics and every single detail needed for the house of the bride. 
As a bride in my twenties I had minimal experience in such stuff. My mother almost scanned all shops and stores in our city before buying anything. Durable was her first criterion. She insisted to check that anything we will buy will be in best quality and price. 

Though almost two decades had passed since then, my mother still do the same. She would get a list with the shops and their numbers and call them to check all details and decide the best option and then hit the store to buy it. She does it with proficiency, devotion and passion. 
From this walk I learned that with same amount of money one can buy a lot more by checking offers. I figured that the price we pay in goods must be relevant to the durability and usage. I learned that passion always remain the same while practicing it might change depending on one’s circumstances. And most of all I comprehended that being stressed in time must not be an excuse to lower our standards. 
Read the intro to this series of articles at:

https://imanrefaat.com/2016/09/16/what-i-learned-from-my-mothers-walks-not-talks-prologue/

  

What I Learned From My Mother’s Walks Not Talks #Walk 13

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” This quote for Benjamin Franklin reflects many of my mother’s walks. Since I was a child my father used to throw parties often. My mother would ask me to give a hand in setting the dinning table, in writing the grocery list or the menu. She would dictate and I write. After the meals she used to ask for help in the kitchen, keeping a share from the food for the less fortunate and storing the rest, always in clean dry boxes.
During the holy month of Ramadan, though having helps, she would distribute some of the Iftar responsibilities on my sisters and me. One would be in charge of the salad, another for the table setting, one for preparing the juices and one for filling the dishwasher at the end. 
From my mother’s walks at home I learned one of the most important parenting lessons. Good parents should embed in their children the sense of responsibility and ensure that they can serve themselves and live independently, as life has its ups and down, so they must prepare them for the unexpected. 

Even though we had helps at home, my mother ensured that we can do almost every home chore which made us reliable wives later. From these walks I learned how practicing a task over and over develop the person’s skill and let him have what we call ‘experience’, even if it’s on a small scale. And for sure this walk made me comprehend how tasks become less stressful and less time consuming when divided on many persons. I learned that family members must collaborate together. I understood that children must give a hand at home since their early years. I learned that mothers must not handle the family chores alone. Most of all I learned to use lists to plan my tasks and how planning is fundamental to success. 
Read the intro to this series of articles at:

https://imanrefaat.com/2016/09/16/what-i-learned-from-my-mothers-walks-not-talks-prologue/

  

What I Learned From My Mother’s Walks Not Talks #Walk 12

I hate cooking, I dislike kitchen work and I prefer any other home chores rather than cooking. When my children got enrolled in school I started preparing them lunch boxes and I still do even that my son became a university student. When my children turned into teens some of my colleagues advised me to stop preparing snacks for my children and let them do this task themselves. Though my son and daughter are responsible and independent in many areas of their lives yet when it comes to their lunch boxes I insist to do them myself. 
Thinking of my mother’s walks it was easy to relate my attachment to this chore. Food was a love language that my mother practiced for many years. When her close uncle got severely sick she used to cook him herself his favourite dishes and go feed him in his mouth. In feasts, despite her old age, she refuses to hire cooks and insists to cook for us our favourite yummy dishes. In my primary years I was underweight and she used to prepare me food for school and insist that I eat what she serves me at home to be in good health when I grow up. 
From my mother’s walk I figured out that love is very different than what I watched in movies. I learned that love is a verb. I comprehended that people can happily do what they dislike when they do it out of love. I recognised how food can nurture our beloved ones when they are sick if it’s prepared with love and how it can help them heal. The sad part is that I still hate cooking. Yet when I prepare lunch boxes for my family members, their breakfast or their dinner I do it with love and I tell them that this food was prepared with genuine love. I use it to fuel them emotionally not only to nurture them physically. 
Read the intro to this series of articles at:

https://imanrefaat.com/2016/09/16/what-i-learned-from-my-mothers-walks-not-talks-prologue/

  

What I Learned From My Mother’s Walks Not Talks #Walk 11

My mother got married in her first year of university. Though being married and giving birth to my two eldest sisters, she insisted to continue her education, trying her best to excel in her studies. 
Years later she started working. Busy with my sisters, my father and me, she limited her working hours as a professor for college students to ensure being at home before we return from school. When I turned eight my mother started pursuing her dream of getting her Masters degree. Months later she got pregnant, which was neither planned nor expected especially that she was almost forty years old and already had three daughters. Few weeks later my mother quit both her job and her masters and freed herself completely for the baby and us.
Though thirty years had passed since this event, I find my mother one of the most intellectual persons I know. Quitting her job and her masters didn’t catch her from nurturing her mind and keeping herself aware of the world around her. She reads daily and watches informative and valuable TV programs. Every time we meet she has something useful to share.
 My mother never complained that her family caught her from fulfilling her dream. And from her walk she taught us many valuable lessons. She was able to put first things first like the effective people Stephen Covey talk about in his 7 habits book. She never played the victim leaving her brain to rotten and blaming fate or circumstances. She modelled how a person can live as an independent life longer learner. Her thirst for learning was contagious to me and my youngest sister; the unexpected baby.
Read the intro to this series of articles at:

https://imanrefaat.com/2016/09/16/what-i-learned-from-my-mothers-walks-not-talks-prologue/

  

What I Learned From My Mother’s Walks Not Talks #Walk 10

Commitment is the thing people commend me the most for. Whether in my work, my personal life or my passion, people always praise me for being committed. 
My daughter, in her primary years, needed lots of help from my part to create for her work routines, to help her organise her working environment and to train her to become independent. It took me months to see some progress and years to turn her into an independent learner. 
Reflecting on myself as a parent I remembered my mother who had devoted herself to help us, her daughters to improve academically. In my school years I was always an average student except for Maths in which I excelled. Yet in all other subjects I used to get a B and few times a C. I would go home after my demanding school days to find my mother preparing for me exercises and worksheets to practice my lessons. Though having already worksheets and tons of homework given to me by my teachers, she never found them enough. I was enrolled in a French school and there weren’t any external books available back then in French. My mother would buy external books in English and Arabic and translate them to French to prepare for me the extra worksheets. As a child, working more than any of my classmates, practicing and studying frustrated me. I used to complain from my mother for suffocating me with studying and working that much. 
Connecting the dots lately I related my mother’s walk to mine. What she did with me in my childhood wasn’t about subjects, grades or results. It was way more profound. She was embedding in me values, developing my attitudes, stretching my abilities and shaping my character. Her walk taught me to do my best whether as a student, an employee or a mother. It developed my endurance and made me persistent. From her walk I learned that I should keep doing my best even if I don’t witness prompt results. I comprehended that it might take children decades to practice what they were taught. I figured out that what we teach to children never goes in vain. And most of all I believe that this walk made me the committed person people praise and commend. Her walk was a great inspiration in commitment and parental love. 
Read the intro to this series of articles at:

https://imanrefaat.com/2016/09/16/what-i-learned-from-my-mothers-walks-not-talks-prologue/