Motherhood means a roller coaster ride, sleepless nights, XXL clothes. But again, it is a feeling of completeness encompassing myriad emotions like seven coloured rainbow. It is the best gift a woman can have from God.

Call her mother, mummy, amma, ma or aai, irrespective of the term used for her, she will always remain that special person who bears intolerable pain and sacrifices a lot of her desires for the sake of her child.

But motherhood is not merely defined by bearing and raising of children. There is a mother in every woman whether she has gone through the pain of giving birth to a bay or not. The dormant motherly emotions in very woman finds expression whenever nature puts her in such a condition where she is required to pour her motherly bliss on a sweet angel, who may not have come into this world through her womb.

The challenge for such mothers to bring up a kid is all the more tough. But there are many such women who have successfully justified their role as a mother. This Mother’s Day, ‘Sakhi’ is taking the opportunity to salute such moms through their children who have shared their story of special bonding with us.

Shahid Kapoor: “Step-mother is an alien word for me”
When I was just three years old my parents (actor Pankaj Kapoor and actress Nilima Azmi) got divorced. After that I started to live with my mother. I tried to understand what led to their separation but could not. Till now I am clueless about it. Whatever, after that mom decided to stay unmarried while papa got married with Supriya ji (actress Supriya Pathak). When papa got married I was mature enough to understand his decision. As I grew, I came more close to my father and started to live with him and my step-mom Supriyaji in their Lokhandwala residence. But I never ever felt that she is my step-mom. She always loved me and took care of me as her own son. Even my step-brother Ehsan is like my own brother. He is so attached to me that he refuses to dine without me. Suypriyaji has always been a moral support for me even in my bad days. As my papa is one of the best actors in India he wanted that I should make a mark in the acting field on my own. By the grace of God and invaluable blessings from both my mom’s I have achieved a foothold in this industry and carved my own identity. Over the years, I became so attached with Supriyaji and Ehsan that now I have bought a flat in the same building where they reside so that I can be in close proximity with them. Personally I feel that differences and ego may hamper relationship between a husband and a wife but the kind of bonding a mother shares with her child is unbreakable. Supriyaji bestows so much affection and love on me that I never felt that she is less than my mother in any aspect. There is no place for the word ‘step mother’ in my dictionary.

Sushmita Sen: “Heart to heart bonding is stronger than blood relation”
I cannot overlook the importance of blood relations but at the same time think that relations created by heart are equally deep and important, this is what Renee and Alisha (my second adopted daughter) have taught me.

Even if I have not given birth to Renee and Alisha, I have struggled a lot to get their custody. As per the rules of our country, one has to take the permission from juvenile court before adopting a second female child. So, I had to even fight a long legal battle for Alisha. I had to fulfill a lot of legal necessities.

Even if I have many helpers to help me in my household activities, I cook for my kids myself and make it a point to take care of them personally. This brings me more close to my daughters. Unless my work doesn’t take a toll, I don’t leave my daughters alone even for a minute. I even take them with me for important functions.

Alisha is too young now, but with Renee things are much different. When she does something wrong, I scold her like any other mom, and when she does something good, I don’t hesitate to compliment her. Like an alert and responsible mother, I do take care of her homework, assignments and results.

I do not believe that only biological mothers have an emotional bonding with their kids as I feel the same responsibility for my kids.

We cannot hide the fact of adoption from kids as with due course of time they will come to know. Now, this is the responsibility of a mother to ensure that the kids don’t get to know this from any outsider.
The child hardly cares if a mother is a biological one or not, what matters for the kid is only love.

Bhavna Reddy (Kuchipudi dancer): “I am blessed with two mothers”
I have been blessed with the affection of two mothers. My father Raja Reddy got married with Radhakka when he was 11 years old. As they did not have any child, my father married Radhakka’s younger sister Koushalya who gave birth to me.  Marrying one’s sister-in-law is not uncommon in the Reddy families of Andhra Pradesh. And surprisingly just after the second marriage, Radhakka gave birth to her first child, Yamini didi. Yamini di is eight years older to me. My mother ‘Koushalya ma’ used to take care of her. I feel very connected with Radhakka as she is very emotional like me. She is a great cook whereas I am a big foodie. She adores me a lot. I always say that my one mother is there to teach me discipline and the other one is to pamper me. Before my elder sister got married, we both used to prepare a surprise menu for our mothers on ‘Mothers day’.

Now that she is not here, I have taken the charge to do something special to honour both my mothers on this special day.

Goutam Rajadhakshya (Photographer): “My creativity is a gift from my aunt”
I lost my parents at the age of eight. I was brought up by my aunt (buaa). She was a dignified lady with enormous knowledge on photography and classical music. My aunt was a vivid reader. She had a diploma in Fine arts from JJ College of Fine Arts. She is the one who taught me the right way to live life. She was a disciplined person and this quality of hers has added a lot to my success. As she did not have her own child, she bestowed all her affection on me. After completing BSc I had to choose a certain career, my aunt called me and asked me politely what I wanted to do in life. She gave me an option to persue Masters. When I told her that I wanted to build my career in advertising she brought several books on the same topic. She never influenced me to opt for the career she wanted. She always said, “Whenever you get time, try to do something new as it helps in your mental growth.” Whatever I am today is because of her, all credit goes to my aunt. She was the embodiment of motherly love and warmth for me.

Raveena Tandon: “Ours is a unique relation”   
When I was trying to make a mark in Bollywood, a very sad episode occurred in one of my relatives place. A mother passed away leaving behind two daughters and their father decided to get married again within a year. The kids were around 8 and 9 years of age. Everyone in my family was apprehensive about a new mother taking care of the kids. It was then that I decided to take the responsibility of the kids (Puja and Chaya). And in 1990 I got their legal custody.

After completing graduation, they started doing jobs and later I even got them married. Now they are very happily settled and often drop in to meet me.
Even if I am not their biological mother, I share a very unique bonding with them. I think there is something more than a mother-daughter relationship between us. For me they are my daughters, sisters and even friends. These girls gave me the blissful feeling of motherhood at the tender age of 18.

I have a son now, but the place which they occupy in my heart is something very special and unique.