Now, since I grew up mostly with my Mom... all I can say is that in my family's case... it's true when they say that "behind every successful man is a woman".
If you've met my Mom, you'd agree with me that she most definitely isn't a typical mom or a typical Malay. She has "radical" thoughts and opinions on certain things, but if you really read the Quran or religious books... you will realise how her thoughts are NOT RADICAL AT ALL; it's just the way she puts it across that makes it look like she's radical.
My Mom does alot of the thinking (and doing) in the household; she thinks about the groceries (and buys them), she thinks about her kids and their education and future (she will climb each and every staircase she can, to make sure that we receive the education we deserve), she thinks about our savings (she never spent a penny of the monies we got from our angpaus and the other monies people gave us occasionally PLUS she saved her money for us in our accounts as well) and she thinks about the best way to invest money for the family. She basically drives the ship that we are all in.
Growing up, I admit that I didn't really appreciate her as the person that she is. But now that I'm married and also a mother myself... all I can say is that all this while, she has been grossly misunderstood. There are not many mothers like her who protect her cubs (even when married) like a lioness. There are not many women who can think about the best assets to invest in, not just for herself, but also for her children. There are not many women who are able to think on their feet and provide solutions when people are in trouble. There are not many women who
can are willing to use up all their hours in a day to care for her family. And we are definitely lacking women who have a balance of some sort in their lives.
Growing up, I never saw my mom sit still. If she wasn't trying out a new recipe, she was spring cleaning, if it wasn't that, she would be reading, or sewing or playing with us. In my mind, there never existed the word "tired" or "lazy" in her dictionary. She was always up to something.
Now that my Mom is older... she's slowed down in some ways but in alot of ways, she's still the same person she has always been (with more wisdom), sometimes making me question my competence as a mother.
And since my Mom is the way she is, every time I meet another mom who is not like mine... I tend to think that what the other mothers are doing (or rather not doing) is... wrong(???). And though deep down, I know it's not really wrong... I always think about how well my mother drives the ship and think about how every mother should be like her; a mother who her children are able to rely on for anything imaginable and is the epitome of how strong women are and should be.
Because that's the only way I know how (real) mothers should be; like Mama.
And for that, I hope and pray that the highest of Heavens is waiting for her.