My four-year-old daughter was sitting at her desk, carefully colouring in something. I squatted beside her as my one-year-old son crawled around happily beside me. ‘What are you doing, sweetheart?’ I asked. She looked up with a smile and showed me her masterpiece. It was a picture of the Indian Flag that she had drawn herself. The kids were discussing world cultures in my daughter's pre-school, here in Manila, Philippines. And she was representing India. Though both my children are Indian citizens, they were born here. While both of them have spent vacations in India, the bulk of their lives so far have been spent living overseas. Despite this, my daughter strongly identifies as an Indian and misses the country of her origin even though it is not the country of her birth.
As an Indian expat mother, I find raising my children abroad both a blessing as well as a challenge.I could wax poetic about this but let me keep this short and sweet. I want to share with you three of the blessings and three of the challenges that I, as an Indian expat mother, have faced while raising children away from my home country. Living away from India has also attuned me to some blessings - as also struggles - that only Indian moms face.