As one half of the sister force at Zariin, there are many facets to Mamta’s personality. A voracious reader, passionate runner, a keen traveller, lover of good words, a powerful entrepreneur and a strong mother are several realms to her personality. Her multi-tasking skills and the balancing act as a single mother and entrepreneur have been daily lessons for us. She defines the moment of having Kabir as the most powerful one and the beginning of the Part B of her life when she truly experienced the force of being a woman. The inspiring mom that she is states that “The biggest gift that my mum has given me is TIME and that is what I try to give Kabir as well. It’s always been quality over quantity. I try to be as present as I can.” For the Mother’s Day edition of the Real Women series, we peek into this incredible relationship of the mother-son duo.
What do you remember of the day you had Kabir?
29 September. 2008. Chicago. Dreamy…..surreal……
I was in my mid twenties when I had Kabir, so in some sense having him in my arms when he came out, I feel that day I had grown into a full woman. Until then I felt that I had lived the part A of my life and right after that’ something had changed within me..I had created life within me. It was a very powerful feeling.
What has surprised you the most about being a single mother? What has it taught you about yourself?
I feel I can really truly can do the role of both mom and dad. Though I have a village to lean on but I can raise my child with full strength and conviction - alone. Whatever it has come down to, whether it is travel, daily decisions or financial responsibility, I have tried to take on the role and the fact that I see a happy thriving kid….I must be doing okay.
How important was your support system? What are the ways in which it helped you?
They say that it takes a village to raise a child so my support system has been incredibly important to me. I cannot count my blessings enough. I moved back from the US with Kabir when he was 15 moths old and promptly got into the action of starting Zariin, find myself in the world, have my own journey as well so that way my family has really been there. My mom has been a second mom to Kabir and everybody in my family, my siblings, they had a role to play and shaping Kabir to become who he is today. I think everyone has played a fundamental role in their own way and I’m very very grateful for that.
The most JOYFUL activity with Kabir.
I think travelling is our most joyful activity together because neither of us have our schedules to bother us there. There’s a lot of spontaneity, lot of discovery and exploration. We are both calm and easy. There’s so much joy to create when we are travelling together. We love doing that. We steal every opportunity to get out from the routine and go out and travel together as mom and son.
Your most memorable travel trip together with Kabir.
Our last trip to Austria when we had gone to Innsbruck and he had a summer training camp for his climbing. It was really memorable. It was a small Alpine town. Our day consisted of cycling and trekking. We would bike together to his training facility where he would take on his role as a climber and I would explore the town. We would then collect for meals, walk around, have an ice cream…gelato everyday…good memories!
What are the best traits of a Sagittarius mom? How have those traits helped you be a fabulous mom?
Sagittarians are basically very spontaneous and open minded and that has helped me in a lot of ways as a mother because I have understood that my son be cannot be everything that I want him to be. He’s a different person. I am open minded to accept him and not project myself on him. The other thing is spontaneity…there’s a lot of room in our lives to change the course. We both embrace change really well. Sagittarius being a fire sign, there’s a little bit of hot headedness so I can be strict and take charge when I have to. It has had its role to play.
What are the challenges of being a single mom? What are you most proud of as a single parent?
One of the biggest challenges is that I have to play both the good cop and the bad cop. I am not able to outsource the bad cop part to a coparent. I have a growing teenager so there are times when I wish there was someone there to say “You cannot talk to your mom like that!” It’s me who has to advocate for myself. But the challenges are not too bad because overall Kabir is a good kid and we overcome all the challenges together.
How has your own mom influenced your parenting?
The biggest gift that my mum has given me is TIME and that is what I try to give Kabir as well. It’s always been quality over quantity. I try to be as present as I can. When he was growing up as a baby, I tried to adapt my work schedule around him. I believe in creating priceless, timeless memories with him. My mom has always been very approachable, very emotionally available for me. She’s tried to create that safe space where I could talk to her about anything. I think I have succeeded in learning and translating that same sense of being approachable and being there for my son wherein he feels comfortable to talk to me about anything. We have our winding down routine where he talks about his day and I talk about mine. I feel that I’m really tuned into his life and that is something that I learnt from my mother that being emotionally there is a very important aspect of being a mother.
Your biggest victory as a parent.
I feel very happy that I have raised a person who is kind, who has found a passion, who is always happy to try new things, who is driven, who wants to do well and who is not shy or hesitant to express his love for me or for the family. He is a very expressive and a communicative child. But above all I am just very grateful is he’s kind and his base note is that he’s a happy child!
What would you tell your younger self today?
Take risks, make mistakes….I probably didn’t make many mistakes as a child so a lot of learning came when I was much older. So I would tell my younger self to go out, be bold, take risk, don’t be too safe because I think that’s what culminates into a very wholesome life.
What is your dream for Kabir?
Well as a mom I can always hope and pray that he has clarity of his dream and I’m always there to support him. Be the wind beneath his wings and be his strongest cheer leader where ever he goes. Always be there to support him, witness him, be there for him. But it’s his dream, his life and he has to blossom into the person he is meant to be.
Any advice for other single moms?
I think we mums have got it. We know what is best for our kids. But in the whole process don’t lose yourself, make space within yourself to heal grown and nurture.