Familiarity over Maternity

Familiarity Over Maternity
There are many responsibilities of motherhood, some of which require sacrifice for the betterment of the child. While most mothers happily and willingly accept maternal duties, unfortunately there are others that do not. “Search” by Nahid Rachlin (1999), is a tear-jerking story of a woman’s pursuit to find Pari, the mother that abandoned her as a young child. When choosing familiarity over maternity, Pari’s initial and continued self-centered actions solely contributes to her family’s emotional damage, which is opposite of a mother’s instinct to protect her children from pain and suffering. Of the emotional distress caused by Pari, only heartbreak, depression, and unhealthy relationships were the outcomes for both daughters.
In this story, happiness equates to familiarity for Pari. When an unexpected visitor, the neighborhood boy she would have married from Persia, came knocking at the front door, Pari says, “he had punctured a capsule in which powerful memories had been bottled up” (Rachlin 193). Memories from Persia rush through her mind, awakening her from a trance like state resulting from depression. It is the secure feeling of the known, the familiar, which gives her happiness in her life once again.
It is not only the initial act of suddenly abandoning her children without notice that leaves them broken hearted and damaged, but it is also the continued desertion that freshly preserves the emotional anguish. Instead of responding to the many letters pleading for her to return home, Pari chooses to ignore her daughter, Miriam. She closed the door for communication and, in turn, closed the door for emotional closure for her estranged daughters. Even after responding 16 years later to a letter from Miriam, Pari writes back as Aunt Mahin and not as herself. Again, her selfishness trumps motherhood in order to protect her new life, one that does not include the daughters she left behind. In the letter, Pari writes, “keeping a...