It is the amount of time a mother spends on her children 😀
The physical stress of children I had expected. I had expected sleepless nights, tired limbs, mountains of laundry…. And perhaps, because I did it regularly on a much lesser scale, I thought I would be able to handle motherhood.
SubhaanAllah, now that I think of it, looking at just how much some mothers have to do – how patient they have to be – it’s a miracle that they survive the day.
The most difficult thing of all, perhaps, is the time. Or, well, lack there of. Once you have children, you have almost no time for anything else.
I wake up in the morning when my daughter wakes (which is usually at the time of fajr prayer – before sunrise). I was her up and then attempt to make breakfast with her close by. My son wakes soon after…. The day goes on and on until both of them are finally down for the night. Then, I am given about an hour of respite (God bless my husband), in order to clean, do my kitchen wrap-up, pray and shower. I am dragged off to bed by my 6 month old. It is with them that I wake, and with them that I eat, play, do work….And eventually sleep.
I know that there are moments in the day – say when the tiny one is sleeping – that I can go off and od my own thing for awhile, but then I have to use that time for the older one. I don’t want him to think that when the baby is down, I can ignore him. I want him to know that I’m still crazy about him and that I’m still there for him.
I realize now why people give their children to sitters so much – they have to have that free time, or they’ll lose themselves.
For me, I know that this stage is not forever. InshaAllah my children will be grown one day. I don’t want to regret a thing. I realize that I put this grueling method of motherhood on myself – the infant potty training, no baby food out of a jar, not leaving them for more than an hour unless necessary – and the list goes on. But just like labor, this too will pass.
And Alhamdulillah for being Muslim! I may not succeed at what I began to do. I may not do a job that I can look at and say, “I’m a great mother!” But Allah knows what I intend. He knows what I give up. He hears the screams I cannot release (and the ones I do!) He sees the tears I push away. He knows the loves that I gave up. And in the end, it is only His approval that I want. It is only His reward that I seek.
If I take this trust that He gave me and deal with it the best I can, He can reward me with far better than what I gave up.
And for an eternity longer 😀