Mother of three ML Radeethep Devakula shares her views on what it means to be a mother, strengthening ties with her kids, and watching them grow.
In Thailand, Mother’s Day always falls on August 12, in celebration of the Queen Mother, Her Majesty Queen Sirikit, who was born on the same date. A time to celebrate the woman who’d brought us into this world, Mother’s Day is about gratitude — about appreciating our mums, and thanking them for all the big little things that have made us who we are.
As the day nears, we spoke to ML Radeethep Devakula, the deputy vice president of Thai Beverage, who herself is a mother of three — Kamonphorn, Supipa, and Vutichart Buranasiri. The high-flying lady and loving mum shares her thoughts on what motherhood means, establishing ties with her kids, and watching them grow into independent individuals.
What do you think it means to be a mother?
Becoming a mother can be difficult, and not everyone has the chance to do so. I think of it as a blessing, being able to bring someone into this world, knowing that they carry a part of us. As mothers, we’re very lucky to be able to watch them grow, and I wish that my children will be able to become good, kind people, who can help others in the future.
Do you place any expectations on your kids?
Well, I expect them to be independent, and eventually build lives for themselves. I don’t put pressure on them to make a lot of money, or become wildly successful or anything like that. It’s more important that they’re able to set their own goals that they find meaningful, and work hard to achieve them.
Does your relationship with them change over the years?
I’m actually very close to all three of my children, especially my daughters. Of course, these things change naturally as they grow up, but I still try to be there for them in every way — both physically and mentally. My third child is 15 now, and he’s starting to have his own plans, so for me it’s about adjusting, because back in the day our lives would revolve around our kids, but now they’ve got their own lives. My oldest daughter has also just finished studying, and she’s working now. She gave her first salary to her grandmother, who cried when she received it.
How similar are you to your kids?
Well, since we’ve lived together for so long, there must be some similarities here and there — my daughters are probably the most similar to me, in that sense. But really, all my children are very different characters.
What values do you hope to pass on?
I just want to make sure they’re aware — you know, to think before they do things, because life is filled with lessons. I always tell them to stay focused, and keep a cool head when trying to overcome the issues they face.
What’s the most treasured thing they’ve given you?
Actually my kids give me things all the time. They’re always trying to surprise me, but I always tell them there’s no need, because I don’t want them to spend excessively. To me, what’s most important is their love. They don’t need to buy me any material gifts at all, because it’s their love that’s most special.