“She is only 7. They live in a very dark house. As her mother was paralyzed after her father’s death, there is nobody to care for the home, and the electricity has been cut off. There is only her little brother and herself to take care of their mother. The neighbors try to help. Several bowls of food are brought to the house every day, and they put some money in their pockets. What she likes best are the stories her mother tells. When she falls asleep listening to them, she has sweet dreams.


Social Welfare hears of the situation. They think, “These children need care, we must place them in a care center.” They ask Children’s Psychological Health for an evaluation. They ask the child to draw a picture. She draws a girl, about 15 years old. She has rainbow colored skirts. It is a fairytale land. It is green everywhere, decorated with multi colored flowers. The girl in the picture is very happy. If a fairy showed up and asked this girl to make a wish, what would this 15-year-old girl in the picture wish for, they ask. She says, for her mother to be able to take her to school just once, like all the other mothers.


After a series of evaluations, they reach a decision: “These children are very happy with their mother. It would be wrong to separate them. The best thing would be to give them material support in their home. We can send a caregiver to see to their needs. And if we give the mother a wheelchair, she can become a “storyteller” for the school.”


 


This was the most impressive life example of my student years – an example that engraved in my heart how basic, and yet how simple the need of a child for his mother is.


If you are a mother, sometimes just being there, and letting your presence be felt is enough. You may not be able to do everything for your child, but you can smile. You can give him/her a hug. You can listen. You can sing with him/her. You can tell a story. The toys you buy, the courses you send him to, the gifts you give, can never take the place of what you give from yourself, or the love you share. 


On this mother’s day, I wanted to remind you of this once again…


 


Expert Psychologist Derya Gülterler

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