Thank you MOM !

By T.U. Dawood
Tue, 05, 20

Mother’s Day is a celebratory occasion, honouring the mother of the family, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society.It is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in the months of March or May. In Pakistan, we celebrate it in May. This week You! talks to some female celebrities and trailblazers who share their love for their moms with our readers...

  • What is your favourite memory of yourself with your mom?
  • How has your mom influenced you?
  • How are you going to celebrate this Mother’s Day if we’re still in lockdown?
  • Any special words for your mom?
  • What is your favourite dish of your mom?
  • If you have a daughter, how do you want to see her grow up?

Sarwat Gilani, Actress

  • My mom, Nawabzadi Tahira Feroz Shah, humming ‘Chanda Mama Dir Kay’ (lullaby) at night while I would go to sleep.
  • What I am today – not just professionally but by heart – is exactly like her. She used to do charity and would take us along to various charity welfares as children because of which now I am involved in so many causes myself. She was an artist too thus she always encouraged towards Arts and so I took up Art educationally and after many years I reconnected with the artist inside me in quarantine because of her.
  • I am going to make a handmade card and print a wrapping paper with the help of my children and wrap a gift that I have kept for her. We plan to make buntings and along with a packet of balloons, we shall send them over to my mom’s.
  • Thank you for each and everything you did for us, thank you for all the sacrifices you made for our wellbeing. I love you, ma!
  • My mother cooks an amazing daal chawal and bindi.
  • I want to see her grow up as a reflection of her family but be her own person.

Shaniera Akram, Social worker

  • I couldn’t possibly pick one. My mum, Greta (known to my daughter and the boys as Grandma Greta, Glam-mar and Tatoi) has contributed so much happiness to my life, she defines who I am as a person. I shared my mom with 3 other sisters and although she had her hands full most of the time, she was always there for me. When I was down, she was there. When I was picked on at school, she was there; when I just needed a shoulder to cry on, she was there. And like every mom, the list goes on: learning to drive, buying a dress for the formal, crying over the boy that dumped you at the formal, learning to cook, my first job, homework, birthdays, moving out of home, coming back home, career paths, love, babies and much more.
  • My mother is like a lioness. I have seen my mom stand up to some very intimidating people defending me and I suppose I’m a bit like that, I won’t let anyone hurt my children or make them feel like they are bad, wrong or different. My mother’s love is unconditional. I go through life knowing my mom loves me completely and that kind of love is incredible.
  • Like I always do, with a phone call a few laughs and a few tears. She knows that wherever I am in the world my thoughts are always with her.
  • There is not a day that goes by that I don’t thank you for giving us your everything.
  • My mom is European and has been taught by her mom to cook for big families. Her mom lived through a war and can make amazing dishes from scratch with no recipe. Her dishes are always healthy and full of vegetables and throughout my life, there are always pots of food in the fridge. She cooks from her heart, she never let me have fizzy drinks or processed food as a kid. It’s always about home cooking and cooks to suit the weather and the season. I cook like this!
  • With the knowledge that she comes from a long line of strong, passionate and loving woman.

Noorjehan Bilgrami, Owner of Koel

  • I fondly look back to the times when I was 10-11, my mother - Ghayyur Jahan called Gigi by her friends - would gently guide me in correcting my drawing and painting in watercolours. She initiated my interest in Art.She was a workaholic, had immense energy to multi-task. Apart from managing the house and children, she taught at a school, she was an announcer of External Services of Radio Pakistan, and yet had time for us. I think I inherited her ability and learnt to multi-task from her.
  • Best way is to spend quality time with my Amma at home. Lockdown days have been all great Mother’s Days!
  • May Allah give all moms health and fulfilling joy from their families.
  • Her shami kababs and dahi barey are unbeatable!
  • I have two grown up daughters with their children. Mashallah, it gives me immense happiness to see how involved and loved they are with their children.

Naseem Hameed Abbasi, Athlete

  • So many beautiful memories of my mom Nasreen Bano. The best memory was when I won the gold medal for Pakistan in 2010 and the way she hugged me and gave her blessings.
  • My mom wanted me to be her wings to fly as she never quite had the courage to do. I love her for that. I love the fact that she wanted to give birth to her own wings. She has greatly influenced me.
  • I am learning cooking in lockdown period. I am going to surprise my mom on Mother’s Day by cooking her favourite dish.
  • Ammi - you made my life wonderful and pushed me to be successful. I love you.
  • Shami Kababs.
  • I hope I would see my daughter grow up as a happy, healthy, confident and rational human being.

Spenta Captain Kandawalla, 

Chairperson, Captain PQ Chemical Industries (Pvt) Ltd.

  • So many wonderful memories, but story time was always special, because it was alone time with just my Mum - Frainy. Whether it was Lamb’s Tales from Shakespeare or teaching me Persian couplets (which she learned from her father- a Persian Scholar and a Barrister), she always found a way to make story time educational and fun- a time of each day to look forward to.
  • My mother went to England in the ’30s for her higher education, and received a Master’s degree in Chemistry and Geology. In the early fifties, she worked side by side with my father to start and run our family company Captain Chemical Industries, which is now in its third generation. She taught me the value of education and a career so that I could stand on my own feet. This is something I passed on to both my daughters, one of whom is now running Captain PQ Chemical Industries and the other who has a successful tech business of her own in New York.
  • My mum passed away 5 years ago. She would have been 100 years old this year.
  • I made a hardbound book for her on her 90th birthday; a story of her life in pictures and it was prefaced by messages of love and appreciation from each member of the family.
  • My mother had a great interest in cooking and the many, many handwritten recipe books, I have inherited from her are a testament to that interest. I couldn’t possibly list all my favourites, but some of them were cinnamon walnut pinwheel bread rolls, ginger snaps with cream filling, and a dish called Dutch Omelette, which consisted of many thin layers of plain omelette, with delicious fillings between each layer and then covered with a cheese sauce. It ended up looking like a big round cake - delicious.
  • I have two daughters who have grown to be everything I, as a mother, could have ever wished for. They are kind, loving, caring, smart, highly capable and with a strong head on their shoulders; and they make wonderful mothers for their own children. I am very blessed.

Frieha Altaf, PR mogul

  • My favourite memory with my mother, Yasmeen, is going to see films of Zeba Mohammed Ali in cinema. I was the eldest so she would take me as her plus 1.
  • My mother’s family - my nani, mamoos - were extremely affectionate, always teasing, hugging, and pulling pranks. My mother inspired me to shower the same love on my children.
  • I am spending a lot of time with her chatting, doing house work. She is old. I'm grateful to have this time with her.
  • I love you and your ability to love me back unconditionally. To always be by my side to listen to my rants and pray for me.
  • She makes amazing bhunna howa ghosht (mutton).
  • I want my daughter to be strong, sensitive and independent. She already has a lot of empathy and talent. She's confident & beautiful.

Angie Marshall, Makeup Artist

  • Every moment I spend with my mom – Rozi - becomes a memory for me.
  • I have learnt from her that determination and hard work are the keys to success. Also, whenever there was any difficult time in life, prayer and faith in God was what kept her going and I too have unconsciously adapted the same.
  • This Mother’s Day is going to be different since we will not be able to go to church due to lockdown, so we will start the day by praying for all mothers. This year we’ll have our meals together, watch television, and since she loves gardening, I will spend some time with her in the garden.
  • ‘Bui’- that’s what I call my mom - is my shining star, my pillar of strength and my counsellor. Without her guidance and love, I would not be the person I am today.
  • My mom loves to cook not only for the family but also for friends. There was a time when she would easily cook for over 50 people. My favourite is her mutton karahi and caramel custard.
  • I don’t have a daughter.

Komal Rizvi, Singer

  • Gosh, I have so many wonderful memories with my mum - Rana Tariq Rizvi. If I absolutely had to pick one, it would be when she and I took a vacation together to Sri Lanka as my birthday present a few years ago. And she made a real effort to go on safaris and visit historical temples and take in some adventure for my sake.
  • ­My mom and I love to cook and we love to eat to. Hahaha. Maybe we will just have another fun cook of for the whole Rizvi clan for dinner!
  • I love you mom… you are the strongest, most angelic person I know.
  • Mutton yakhni pulao.
  • Not applicable

Tara Uzra Dawood

  • My favourite memory of my mom, Hamida, is picking me up from school when I was little, especially when she wore this very pretty navy-blue top with pink flowers. I always felt safe and loved.
  • The biggest way she has influenced me is in trusting her inner voice and connection with God, rather than being overly concerned with the opinions of others. Her integrity and disinterest in running after anyone inspires me to no end.
  • We’ll celebrate this year with a cake and selfies, if we’re in lockdown. Otherwise, we normally go out for her favourite – sushi!
  • This Mother’s Day, I simply want to say: I love you. You are my inspiration and favourite person. Thank you for being you.
  • My favourite dish of hers is khaosuey (savoury) and Florentines (sweet).
  • If I’m lucky enough to have a daughter one day, I would love her to be as true to herself as my mom is.

Haniya Minhas, 

Tennis prodigy, aged 9, is currently ranked #1 tennis player in Pakistan age 10 and under

  • When my mom - Qurat ul ain - and I were in the water park together.
  • I have yet to learn a lot from her.
  • If I am still in lockdown, I will make a card and bake a cake and surprise her with it.
  • My mom is really kind. She cares a lot about me. Whenever I am losing a match, she cheers me up whenever I am down.
  • I love my mom’s cooking. I just like everything she makes.
  • I would want my daughter to be kind and a good human being.

Sharmila Faruqui, Politician

You! Your favourite memory as a mom?

The first time my son, Hussain, called me ‘mammmaaa’.

You! How has your mom influenced you as a mother?

I celebrate motherhood every day.

You! How are you going to celebrate this Mother’s Day if we’re still in lockdown?

I shall bake some muffins for him this Mother’s Day.

You! We all know you cook, what is your son’s favourite dish you make for him?

My son’s favourite food is roti!

T. U. Dawood is CEO of 786 Investments Ltd., President of Dawood Global Foundation, and sits on the boards of Pakistan State Oil and Pakistan Refinery Ltd.