What Time Is It?

What time is it? I ask my son for the umpteenth time. I’m counting every minute lately, and still I’m racing, racing, racing with the clock as it tick, tick, ticks away.  I’m juggling laundry and making Eid sweets, making sure there is something for everyone at iftar time, helping my kids with homework, the baby is on my constant tail, tugging at my skirt. My daughter announces she needs to take a token gift for her classmates (we decide to remold old crayons), the boys need to be dropped off at … [Read more...]

How to Survive Your First Year of Motherhood in a Foreign Country

All right, I’ve been here in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for about three and-a-half months now and I’ve probably cried the equivalent of at least one of those months so far. No, don’t say "Aww, she’s miserable."  For the record, I’m not miserable or suicidal; I am a first time mother of a beautiful five-month-old baby boy who moved halfway across the world with my husband seven weeks after giving birth.  Do I love my little boy in a completely indescribable way that only other moms would be able to un … [Read more...]

GrowMama Roundup: The Season of Motherhood

A constant question that arises in our minds as mothers is how we can maintain individual fulfillment while making sure that our children are being nurtured and cared for. One of our GrowMama mothers posited the question this way: Why is the mother’s role frequently limited to raising leaders instead of being leaders, or being the seekers of change? Am I raising two girls so that they will raise more girls who will raise more girls? Sometimes I wonder when WE get to be our own people in … [Read more...]

Resentment or Reward?

I have a vision of how I want to earn the pleasure of Allah (swt). This vision is filled with intensive learning, spiritual halaqas, and being in the company of those who fill me with His remembrance. I yearn for a deeper understanding of the Qur'an, learning the etymology of the rich Arabic words that are pregnant with meaning. I dream of going abroad, praying fajr in different masaajid, sitting at the feet of learned scholars, going from one spiritual high to the next. I find myself … [Read more...]

Pause

If I interrupt this silent reverenceWith a hurry up, come, what do you see?I divert her quiet moment with nature,And point it instead at me.At screens, voices, more stimulation,Questions, answers and explanationsBut what really matters, what makes it real,Is that here she learn to listen and feel.Touching the textures and rhythms of creationThis reverence may one day lead to worshipOne day she may hear the pulsing glorificationFrom rocks under foot and leaves over … [Read more...]

Six Year Old

Last night, as I was tucking my daughters into bed, I watched my six-year old cozy up to her two teddy bears, one on either side of her, and lay her head on the pillow, almost inviting slumber and dreams to envelop her for the next 10 hours. She’s a great actor, that little drama queen of mine! The last to fall asleep and the first to get up, she’s often the only member of our family who sees my husband leave for work. She and I both knew she had at least another hour ahead of her before she tru … [Read more...]

One Step Forward, Ten Steps Back

A few weeks ago I went with my family to the WALK NOW FOR AUTISM walk, in Washington, D.C.Groan. Talk about walking three miles with two two-year-olds who don't want to walk at the pace of the other hundreds of people. Or with your group. Or with Mama or Baba. Or according to anyone else's wishes.Nope.Two-year-olds walk the way THEY want to.So we started at 10 a.m.By 10:05 we were way behind our group. By 10:10, I couldn't see our group anymore. By 10:30, I couldn't even … [Read more...]

The Pacifier

The Pacifier. Yes, I capitalized the P. Where do I begin? My son hated it the day he was born. On day two, while getting circumcised, the doctor was trying to force it to stay in his mouth. I guess other baby boys don’t scream during the procedure. I thought the doctor was going to tape it over his mouth. My son must’ve gotten the point, because he suddenly took it. And kept it. Nineteen months later, I’m trying to take it away now.Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like it’s always in his mouth. S … [Read more...]

Breaking Life Into Little Pieces

I always thought I had to find my one thing, the pursuit or career through which I would make my contribution to Islam, society, or humanity. Taught by motivational lecturers and life-planning books that a jack-of-all-trades would never make a difference, I thought that to give my life meaning I had to excel phenomenally at one thing. I panicked in college as I looked for the perfect formula—the field that I liked, full of potential, filled with passion, that I could realistically do with kids a … [Read more...]

Rantings- One Mother’s Way Out

It’s rather bizarre how most of the thoughts that run through my head these days are like a rant. A long-winded rant. A rant that ranges from my latest obsession with schooling options, to philosophical thoughts about motherhood and sacrifice, to aging parents, and finally around to getting some brown colored shoes. What’s wrong with me? Why have I become so incoherent – in my own thoughts?! I feel the onset of dementia sometimes.It’s no doubt, motherhood has made me a worrywart, about everyt … [Read more...]