I am in love with this quote, which I found in a dear friend’s signature:
“This is the true joy in life – being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.”
-George Bernard Shaw
In the incessant balancing act of motherhood, between validating the difficulties of motherhood and being selfless and uncomplaining, between finding time for myself and being who my children need me to be, between being a mother and a community activist, and between needing to nurture myself so I may give more and going for long days without a break I mustn’t forget that ultimately I am not seeking a place of bliss and happiness. Not in this dimension of life.
We may find peaceful places along our journeys, rejuvenating moments, friendships, deep wells of tranquility and contentment, our child’s head on our lap, the coolness of prayer. But we were created to move on to another life and this one will not last. Those moments will pass, time will never be still, and we will be moving forward, working with our head down, onward to meet our Lord. If we understand well, we will be making something of the time we’ve been given here on earth, in the ways that Allah has opened for us. On that journey, we may find a deep sense of peace and realize our potential, but we mustn’t linger too long or spend too much time soaking in the sunlight. Or else we may become distracted and never want to leave.
If I could meet my Creator truly worn out, exhausted, spent to every last breath … yes, I think that is how I would like to meet Him.
Maha Ezzeddine lives in Texas with her husband and four children. She is a dedicated MAS worker, wannabe crunchy homemaker and part-time writer.