I’m Not Sorry We Aren’t Pretty Enough For You

After having two boys, I was thrilled to have a girl. Throughout my pregnancy, people reminded me to read Surah Yusuf lest I have an ugly child. Not to argue its merit, but I had always found this advice to be off-putting. It would be accompanied by an encouraging smile, which made me feel like my husband and I were ogres and that between the two of us only Surah Yusuf could save our poor child.I have a confession, I rarely read Surah Yusuf while pregnant. Beauty was never a huge priority … [Read more...]

How to Restore Yourself While Raising your Child: Advice from a Psychotherapist

Child rearing is difficult beyond measure. There’s nothing that could have prepared you fully for this, and no end in sight to the multitude of tasks that lie ahead. Some of you have slowly begun to forget the world outside, the work you did, the things you learned, the dreams you have. The strength, ambition and drive that you had before have been severely depleted. Your relationship with your spouse has slowly changed. You want to be the you that you once were, but you can’t gain sight of her. … [Read more...]

The Day I Became a Trump Supporter

When I found out I was joining the Grow Mama team, I tried to think of a topic or theme to write about.  With all of the heart-wrenching news I come across on a daily basis, I wanted to write about something light and relatively mindless.  After some soul-searching, I settled on one of my most embarrassing yet wildly entertaining past times - celebrity news.And then Trump won. I decided to share an incident that shook and challenged me as a first-time mother.  I was picking up my son from da … [Read more...]

To the working mother: you are not alone!

A dilemma many working mothers face: do I go back to work or do I stay home with my little one(s)? I remember having this internal dialogue for months during my maternity leave. The mere thought of leaving my child to the care of someone else for eight hours a day shook me to my core and left me feeling miserable for days on end.As my maternity leave came to an end, I couldn’t fathom not having the flexibility and spontaneity with which I was spending my days with my son. I began to stress a … [Read more...]

The Khan Chronicles: Adventures of a School Administrator and Her Two and a Half Children

My life and career as an educator has ensured that my list of “The Truly Shocking” has—for better or worse—dwindled with time. As a former elementary school principal and current high school vice principal, I’ve dealt with the full gamut of child-related issues. Just name it: crying children screaming for their mommies, fist fights breaking out in the cafeteria over ‘yo mama’ jokes, students struggling with mental health issues—I’ve seen it all.So you’ll forgive for once thinking that, as a b … [Read more...]

Ramadan is in the air!

My kids are still babies, the oldest is 6 (going on 16), but my nieces and nephews are newly minted teenagers. I have to say that, mashAllah, the good upbringing that their parents used to raise them is starting to blossom through their manners, priorities, and actions. In a group family message, they shared their resolutions for this Ramadan:Pray 8 rakat duha, daily Complete the Quran Watch the tongue and stay positive Do not touch anyone with anything that may hurt, annoy, or … [Read more...]

Rotten Oranges

Pfffft! My eighteen-month-old son, Ibrahim, spit an orange slice out of his mouth. A few seconds later, my husband, brother in law, and I spit ours out too, realizing that the orange tasted rotten. “How did Ibrahim realize that the orange was bad before us?” I wondered out loud. “I guess babies can sense when something isn’t right,” my husband answered.This incident stuck with me all evening. It reminded me that we are born with a natural instinct, or fitrah, to do right. Our fitrah innately … [Read more...]

A Private Sorrow

I have a sadness buried deep within my heart. It’s a private sorrow shared by many of us who don’t realize how we are ultimately connected, sisters in grief. Last year, just a week before Mother’s day, I had a miscarriage.I’m one of the lucky ones who has been already blessed with two children Alhumdulillah. Each time before, I got pregnant months, even weeks, within ‘deciding’ that we wanted a child. I was foolish and arrogant enough to think that it was up to us, specifically up to me, to t … [Read more...]

And the Minutes Tick By

I am waiting.I know the time will come. I just don't know when.I try to get things done, and piddle around finding things to do. I prepare as best as I can think of, yet I feel it's never enough.I know my life is going to change forever, yet in the back of my mind I feel calm.I finish some work, start some more, and keep on counting the days, wondering when. Always wondering.Who knew that awaiting birth was so similar to awaiting death?I know I am going to die. Every day … [Read more...]

Cupcakes for Two

I hated who I was when I became a mother for the first time. I was angry, low, stressed and I did not take care of myself mentally, spiritually or physically. I remember it being tough time for me and my marriage. I had become a negative person and pushed away a lot of family members. I fought with my husband daily. My daughter was born 2 months premature and I think I read too many books that made me paranoid. I hated listening to advice from family members and just wanted to “break free” from … [Read more...]