She is fierce, yet beautiful. She is protective, yet trusting. She is emotional, yet your biggest rock. No points for guessing, because there’s nobody else who can be all of that, but a mother. So, this Mother’s Day we’ve taken the opportunity to speak to one such mother and a celebrity nutritionist – Pooja Makhija. She is a mother of two beautiful children and a nutritionist to some of the biggest celebrities of B-town such as Deepika Padukone or Mira Rajput to name a few. Given how much the Indian society expects out of women, being a working mother is certainly not easy!
Pooja comes from an extremely conservative Sindhi family. The daughters of their house were not expected to follow commercial professions. Having said of that, it was her mother who saw her interest in health and food and coaxed her to be a nutritionist. Even after her marriage, things weren’t very different. However, her mother-in-law helped stood by her and insisted she pursues the career she has studied so intensively in. Thus it is the strength and determination of both her moms that have helped her get where she is today!
We were curious to know what helps her maintain the balance between family and work. “For me, instead of balance, it’s the passion for both. My job is my passion and needless to say for every mother her child is her inherent passion. What works me is the ‘guilt quotient’. So when I’m at work, and if I’ve worked overtime, I’m constantly feeling guilty about not being around the kids. So when I meet them I go all out and make up for the lost time. That helps me be a better mother too. And vice versa when I’ve been away from work, I get back to it with vengeance so to say. So instead of using guilt to set me back, I use that as a trigger to make sure I do a better job of both,” she says.
Women are gifted with a superpower to multitask. Being a successful professional and a mother is only a result of that. However, every working mother has at least once reached a point where they break down and are willing to give up because it can get too much. But then when they wake up the next day, they’re not willing to give up on their job, just yet.
Pooja’s tip to every working mother out there would be, “Pre planning is key. Don’t leave things to the last minute. Chalk out your day or even your week for that matter. For me, I have multi column schedule. Right from all meals, to the classes kids have to be at. It’s all planned out and the house help and drivers all know the routine. It’s very easy for your children or husband to turn around and say, ‘Why do you care, you’re busy working,’ and they may not even mean it, but it’s natural. So to avoid such things, I try and pre plan as much as I can.”
While it does sound like she’s completely winging it, it comes with its own set of challenges. She has had to give up on A LOT of lunches with her friends or night outs. If she could go out for a meal with her friends, it’s almost a luxury because of the tight schedule she works on. Pro Tip: You have to work it to wing it.
It wouldn’t be fair to be speaking to a nutritionist and not have a fitness tip shared. So here goes, “Never fear food. NEVER. It’s not your enemy, it’s not calories or fat. Food is fuel. Learn how much and how often you need to eat. If you fear food, then people like me will rule your lives,” she says laughing.
Pooja Makhija signs off as a professional saying, “You are what you eat,” and as a mother she signs off saying, “Whatever you do, do it well.”
This was our tiny attempt to draw an insight into the life of a mother. They give in a lot more than we can ever imagine, be it a homemaker or professional. Here’s Team ASD wishing every mother a Happy Mother’s Day. May the generation after you be just as amazing and giving.
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If you like what you read, share this with your mother to brighten up her day and tell her thank you!