Six top traits of those loving and caring Jamaican moms
Jamaican mothers are a unique species of the human race. Although fathers are expected to play important roles in their children's lives, it is the female of the species to whom nature has entrusted the sacred responsibility of nurturing the young from conception to birth.
The act of conception creates a bond that lasts far longer than the cutting of the umbilical cord, a bond that creates a sense of duty as they attend to the physical, social and emotional well-being of their children.
That bond has notably been manifested in some really special traits of the very loving Jamaican moms whose breath-taking love for and loyal to their children are second to none other elsewhere on mother earth.
Here are six of these special traits of the real Jamaican moms:
- Jamaican mothers are often expected to mete out discipline. So growing up, be prepared to be besieged by aphorisms such as: “stick bruk inna yuh ears…” or “yuh a walk pan dem?” Everyone remembers the machete-wielding mother in St Thomas, who beat her daughter with the blade in an eruption of frustration and anger. Sometimes, Jamaican mothers don't have the facility to make themselves firmly and clearly understood with mere words, particularly in high-pressure situations. So you are guaranteed to hear rhetorical witticisms such as "mi gi yuh anything fi bawl fah?" delivered in the middle of a whipping after the ominous “guh fi de belt”. But amidst it all, is the uncanny fixation on the well-being and future prospects of the children, albeit the whipping.
- Jamaican mothers can generally cook good! Forget about Chef Boyardee; Jamaican mothers can cook him under the table. Scrumptious meals such as ackee and saltfish, roast breadfruit, stewed pork, callaloo, curried goat, baked chicken. Sometimes, just the smell of a meal years later can send you tumbling back to your childhood home. Just ask Merciless who declared, 'Mama's Cooking ah di Greatest".
- They would have given you the gentle reminder that they are the alpha, the omega and the omnipresent being in the household with the skewed, dreaded but purposeful logic of, "Mi bring yuh into this world…mi can tek you out!"
- Jamaican mothers don't like certain pronouns. Certainly you can remember getting a quick box on your ears for referring to your mother with that supposedly innocent pronoun “she". Even when making reference to her when in conversation with other people, mother must always be qualified as “mummy”, "mama" or “mom”, but never “she”. Yuh mad?
- Maybe this is universal, but Jamaican mothers never shy away from a lecture on the incredible profligacy of throwing away or wasting food. “Do you know how many children are staring in Africa...” it begins. “Clean that plate, young man,” it ends.
- Hush baby. In other cultures, hush means to ‘shut up’, but in Jamaica, hush is a word used to provide comfort to a child in pain or emotional distress. “Hush, mi baby” still holds pride of place from the Jamaican mom with all the love in her heart.