Marie Seng Bagheri
Marie Seng Bagheri has been a full-time mother for the last couple of years, but now that both her sons, Aydin and Aryan, five and three respectively, have started school, she has more time on her hands. She has recently embarked on a new project with her sister, Reasey Seng. “We’ve launched a children’s clothing line called Yasmeen et Alex, which is only available by appointment. Reasey designs the line as she studied fashion design in London, and the clothes are made with European fabrics. We provide vocational training to a young girl in Cambodia named Hui. By teaching her how to create our designs, we hope to provide a brighter and sustainable future for her. The aim is to expand this initiative to give more girls like Hui a chance to flourish and become self-sufficient. As for the packaging, we made the conscious decision to work with a Singapore company that uses recycled paper and is working with the Yellow Ribbon Project. We want to help Cambodia, where we’re originally from, as well as Singapore, which we now call home.”
What is the best thing about being a mother?
To be honest, there are so many things. The unconditional love and the blind trust between a mother and her child, for one. It is pretty incredible to be a mother – you’re nurturing the next generation, providing them with all the necessary tools to become confident, balanced, healthy and happy adults. But while being there to help and guide them during their journey, it is sometimes hard to refrain from constantly telling them what to do. I keep reminding myself that as a parent, I need to let my sons live and experience things on their own. That is how they can then truly learn. Oh, and let’s not forget the incredible support that mothers can provide for one another!
How has motherhood changed you?
It has made me more humble, compassionate and empathetic to the needs of my kids, other kids and other parents around me. I’ve started questioning myself on a daily basis; I wonder how my actions will impact my children in their development. We’re not only parents, but also teachers, nurses, friends, superheroes and everything else to them. They believe everything we say and do. Being a parent is definitely not an easy task, but it is one that I wouldn’t trade for anything else.
Tell us about your own mother.
My mother is the strongest and most patient person I have met. Born in Cambodia, she lived through the Khmer Rouge regime and was the only survivor in her family. I remember my mother telling me as a child, “I’m providing you with the tools that will guide you as much as I can, but I can’t live your life…” She is a deeply religious and spiritual person; she takes annual pilgrimages to Buddhist temples and monasteries. But her faith is more than that. She has been a strong guiding force in our family and has kept the family together. I hope I can learn from her and be a similar pillar of strength, guidance and unity for my sons.
What advice would you give your sons when they turn 21?
Live your life to the fullest; love yourself! Don’t waste your time comparing yourself to others – just be the best version of you. But follow this one rule: Make sure that your happiness does not harm anyone else.
Art Direction: Audrey Chan
Hair: Ann Lin/Athens Salon
Make-up:TG Goh, using Shiseido