Estelea's Blog

French Mum, humanitarian, restless explorer and doer on sabbatical in Cebu (Philippines): one Attila in each arm, I am exploring the “toddlers safe” corners of the region, while trying to keep some room for Me.

Who do I call? La Mama, of course!

Today’s prompt:  Have you ever faced a difficult situation when you had to choose between sorting it out yourself, or asking someone else for an easy fix? What did you choose — and would you make the same choice today?

by Mandy Schmidt

by Mandy Schmidt

The answer to this question was almost a surprise to my own self. Me, the independent, fierce traveller, justneedairtobreath kind of girl did not even think twice when asked who I would call when faced a difficult situation !

I would call Ma Maman. It took us a while before we really became friends. I guess I am not this conventional daughter she would have dreamt of. While all my classmates were having the kind of life that would make their Mum proud (= get married and find a stable job, preferably as a civil servant), I was driving my Land Cruiser among mine fields in Sudan, free as a bird. While the Nathalie, Sophie and other Isabelle were busy reproducing, I was feeding starving children in Niger. Our views on the world were so different that a simple chat would turn into a passionate debate of opinion. Totally frustrating and exasperating.

When I met Marcel, I was already on the less sparkly side of my thirties. You would not believe her words when she met him. Her confidence in my “engagement skills” were so appealing that she literally thanked him for being with me! Even more embarrassing, she confessed she had prayed so hard for this day. I still wonder if she had realized that her words did actually get out of her mouth..


One of those magic things that traveled all the way from Europe to India. When it comes to packing, I am sure Mary Poppins learnt it all from my Mum!

Then I got pregnant with Maelle. I was alone in India, Marcel could only visit me every three months, and ice on the cake, I was bedridden. As strange as it then seemed to me, the only person I wanted by side was my Mom. I did not even had to ask. Here she was, she had traveled all the way from Paris to Delhi in a the blink of an eye!

Those days in my little apartment.. I still resent the asthmatic aircon coughing its cold air far too sporadically to be of any help. Those damned pigeons waking me at dawn (you have no idea how much I hate them!), turning me into a depressed sleep deprived  zombie. I had nothing left to read, no TV, my computer had crashed a week before… Basically, we had nothing to do and nowhere to go. Scary, no? Truth is, those days were actually blessing in disguise.

We finally had time to discover each other, to really talk our heart out, two women getting to know each other. Nothing judgmental, no more “daughter” or “mother” labels on our foreheads.

I was freaking out by the mere thought of giving birth, had a couple of panic attacks that she handled with so much fun and positive attitude. We would spend hours trying those “meditative and positive technic” she had read about, but never really made it because we would laugh too hard. She braved the inferno of Delhi 50 degrees and its yellow smoke of pollution to venture in the market, so she could cook me my favorite meals (who would believe a real couscous would make me so happy? this precious memory still make my chin quiver!).

I discovered a woman so energetic, witty and adaptable. For someone who never left Europe before and hardly spoke any English, she was just amazing! Her impulsive and indecisive self that used to irritate me so much had simply vanished.Fblr

I welcomed the news of my “medical evacuation to Europe” with a mix of relief to finally get back home; and anxiety to have to live the next 6 months with.. my Mum!

I won’t pretend we lived in perfect honeymoon all the time, the apple never falls far from the tree. She has her temper, I have mine. But I still cherish the memories of those bonding times, and I am so proud to call her my best Friend. In retrospect, when I realize how great she did (and still does!) with me and my brothers, I know that if I turn to be half the woman my Mum is , I would have succeeded!

Whenever I am in doubt with my options, when I feel lost or just need a little pad in the back, I’ll call Mum! She knows exactly how to pick me up when I am down and trade her warm smile for my frown.


For all the dreams we have shared, the tears and laughter too: Je t’aime ma p’tite poulette !!!!!


31 comments on “Who do I call? La Mama, of course!

  1. graydaysandcoffee
    November 26, 2014

    Very moving. Makes me want to call my mom right now. And the top photo is so lovely

    • estelea
      November 26, 2014

      Thank you 🙂 We had the photo taken in Bangkok last year, was fun to have the 3 generations finally on the same continent..

  2. ady
    November 26, 2014

    Thank you very much for sharing some of your precious memories 🙂 I am not sure if a single line comment would suffice how I feel. I can just say, I am happy I read this,I am glad it turned out beautifully for you and mom, and both of you are indeed brave and kind 🙂

    • estelea
      November 26, 2014

      Thanks so much Ady for your lovely words 🙂 she still has a gift to drive me crazy, but at least it does not last as long as it used too! Took me a while to realize that being a mother is not as super easy as I initially thought it would be 😛 X

  3. Yvette Bouaziz
    November 26, 2014

    Hé bien, tu auras réussi à me faire pleurer ce matin …..mais c’est de l’émotion pure.
    Cette déclaration d’amour me récompense de toutes mes angoisses. (Classiques angoisses de mère) et en tant que super maman toi même, tu découvriras comme c’est simple finalement…ce que tu appelles dévouement, n’est que pur amour.
    je t’aime aussi très fort ma fille.♡♡♡♡♡♡.

  4. Regis ABITBOL
    November 26, 2014

    C’est trop beau cette échange d’affection entre 2 supers femmes. Je vous envoie pleins de bisous

    • estelea
      November 26, 2014

      Merci Merci! Des milliers de bises en retour 🙂 et les vraies en mars!

  5. Regis ABITBOL
    November 26, 2014

    vivement Mars alors 🙂

  6. trablog
    November 27, 2014

    Yoy have a very inspiring life. Nicely written. Loved the featured image! Such cute smiles all around!

    • estelea
      November 27, 2014

      Thanks a lot! Not sure it is inspiring, but definitely inspired 🙂

      • trablog
        November 27, 2014

        That is nice. Keep inspiring and inspired 😀

      • estelea
        November 27, 2014

        Will do 😉 Keep clicking and sharing then, you’re definitely part of the circle!

      • trablog
        November 27, 2014

        Haha,, im humbled 🙂 Thank you so much 🙂

      • estelea
        November 27, 2014


  7. lauramomma27
    November 29, 2014

    What an amazing story!! What an exciting and thrilling time and life you are living!!! I love your story and you told it so beautifully. Can’t wait for more!

    • estelea
      November 29, 2014

      Oh thank you so much :)) this was indeed a very special time. My daughter has my Mum’s name as her middle name. And beyond that, they have a special connection, it’s super sweet 🙂 thanks again for your very kind words and have a grande WE 🙂

  8. lauramomma27
    November 29, 2014

    Reblogged this on Beginning Life at 43 and commented:
    I had to reblog this beautiful story by this amazing blogger mom. Though living a world away literally and figuratively- a mother filled with the very same passionate love. Loved your story Estelea, thanks for sharing it!

  9. deborahcrocker
    November 29, 2014

    Thank you so much for sharing this. Awesome! My Mom passed away last December 13. I miss her right now.

    • estelea
      November 30, 2014

      Oh I m so sorry for your loss. Hope my little story brought back sweet memories … Have a lovely day 🙂

  10. Yvette Bouaziz
    November 30, 2014

    Mais quel succès!tu vas culpabiliser tous ces enfants ingrats qui oublient d’appeler leur maman…et qui vont se dépêcher de le faire. (Grâce à toi.) Bisous.

  11. smalltowngirlsmidnighttrains
    December 7, 2014

  12. Priceless Joy
    December 20, 2014

    I absolutlely love this Estelea! Your children are absolutely adorable!!

  13. Pingback: Don’t be shy, I can do most of the talk | Estelea's Blog

  14. Pingback: The French word of the day: mamie | Estelea's Blog

  15. Pingback: Happy Bday Maman (and thanks for aging so much more gracefully than Madonna!) | Estelea's Blog

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This entry was posted on November 26, 2014 by in Family, Me and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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