Motherhood

Motherhood is ELECTRIC.
The moment I found out I was carrying a life within me I was awe struck and everything in my life shifted. It was the start of motherhood. Nine months later childbirth experience was full of energy, of chaos. An emergency c-section came unexpectedly after hours of pushing. Recovery from the surgery and the journey through breastfeeding dealt me the most pain I had ever endured. But it didn’t matter to me. I pushed through because the single most important thing in my life became my child.
Being face to face and skin to skin with my  little Sufyan for the first time gave me a jolt unlike any I had ever experienced. He was beautiful! He was perfect! Alhumdulillah, there could never be enough thanks given to God for Sufyan’s presence in my life.
If that wasn’t electrifying enough, nurturing and raising a whole other person full-time certainly is. Being fortunate enough to stay at home full time with Sufyan has taught me a great deal about myself as a mom and a woman. Becoming a mom has given me an entirely unique perspective on my relationship with my mom, and a newfound appreciation for all the love she has given me since my own birth.
The one thing I will always do my very best to instill in my little man is self-love. If he can love who he is and recognize that he can do anything, he will certainly be able to love  others, live responsibly, care for this earth, and do something good every day to make the world a better place.
Sufyan has a meaning in Persian; a walking thunderstorm. Since he creates the thunder, motherhood has to be the lightening . I hope to always show him the light in a rainstorm.

Chaos

I guess you could say things got a little hectic after I gave birth to Sufyan… because clearly I haven’t gotten on the blog to post anything!

Maybe it’s just that in the little free time I now have, I choose to relax or take care of the many chores around the apartment.

I think I also got a little intimated at the idea of consistently blogging and actually having people view what I share.

WELL…. I just got charged the annual fee for my blog hosting site and as a stay-at-home mom I felt the $99 better not go to waste… I better start writing.

Eid Mubarak | Special Announcement!

A little over a year ago (April 29th, 2016), my hubz and I tied the knot! Now, we have some exciting news to share with all of our friends around the world…15

You probably guessed it – We’re expecting!

Our little one is due on July 12th, 2017 inshallah (God-willing). We’re a little late on the announcement but we thought today, Eid Al-Fitr, is the perfect day to spread the happy news!

We are so thankful for all the sweet wishes and can’t wait to be parents. We have just a couple of weeks left to prepare. With all the reading I’ve done and the random facts I now know about babies, one might assume I’m an expert…. but we’ve talked to enough people to know that you can research all you want but no one can describe the feelings you’ll have, experience you’ll gain, and tough moments you’ll tackle when you actually become parents.

We’re excited for all of the new adventures we’ll be having with the new addition to our family. If you have any advice for first-timers, we’d love to hear them – leave us some love in the comments!

Shoutout to my amazing husband for all of his love and support throughout this journey, and for the sweet maternity shoot. In these photos I’m wearing this dress by Louella, and basically lived in Louella tunics throughout my pregnancy. SO comfy. More about that later 🙂

We hope all of our Muslim friends have an amazing Eid spent with loved ones ❤

Eid Mubarak!

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Dealing with Distance

Ever since I moved to Texas last April (2016), I’ve felt a deep homesickness. I had a lot of changes in my life at that point – getting married, starting a new job, and moving to a completely new state. I’m going to talk more about my moving experiences and how I stay positive (when I do!) in future posts, but for now I just wanted to give two big tips on how I keep in touch with my family and friends in my home state, Virginia. This is not a sponsored post, these are just really great services that I personally recommend!

Tip #1: WhatsApp. This app is my saving grace, for two reasons;

CHAT | I use the chat feature daily to connect with my family. If you don’t have it already, I highly recommend downloading it and creating a family group. It’s worth it to spend an extra few minutes to teach older adults in the family how to become more whatsapp-savy. We text updates throughout the day, send photos to one another, and make plans for visits. My sister will send photos and videos of my niece and I feel like I’m close-by watching her grow up!

CALLS (VIDEO/AUDIO) | The second feature I use is the audio call feature. I personally have an iPhone, but half of my family doesn’t! We can’t FaceTime, so instead, to improve call quality, we use the WhatsApp audio calls. On the weekends, we sometimes catch up with the video call feature. It’s way better than the direct mobile calls simply because the sound is so much crisper! This is especially true when you’re on wifi.

Tip #2: Southwest AirlinesI rarely travel via any other airline. This is for several reasons;

POINT SYSTEM & CREDIT CARD | Knowing my home-base (and heart) is in Virginia, I knew I’d be traveling there often. Sticking to one airline makes the most sense to me because I can accrue points and travel using these points. At a previous job when I was traveling 85% of the time, I quickly earned A-List status which allowed me to board in the first set and also to skip the security line. Talk about a game-changer! With the credit card, I easily earn points through my purchases. They had an offer that got me 50K points in 3 months, and Nunu (hubby) and I used those to fly to SF for our Hawaii trip! Without that boost, we may not have been able to make the trip happen at such a good deal.

CANCELLATIONS | I had a nightmare situation with a different airline one time – They wouldn’t refund my ticket cost when I had accidentally booked the wrong date. To make matters worse, it was a work booking. The entire situation put this fear in me of booking with other airlines. Southwest Airlines does not charge when you cancel or change a flight. Depending on the type of ticket you purchase, the funds will remain on your account for future purchases. This works for me because I’m obsessed with traveling and I know I’ll use the funds.

BAGGAGE POLICY | Two free carry-ons and two free checked bags (at 50lbs max each)? Unbeatable.

When you live away from the place you consider home, it’s hard to feel connected to that place and the people. I’m always looking for ways to see my family, and WhatsApp and Southwest Airlines have made my living apart from them a whole lot less difficult. If you have any questions about my experiences moving away from family or home, drop a comment and let’s connect. If you have your own tips, I’d love to hear them! 🙂

 

Facing Fears

From now on, if something scares the crap out of me… I need to do it. As long as it’s lawful and not going to kill me, there’s no reason I can’t face it. I want to be real with myself about what I can do, and the truth is, I can do anything. I just don’t believe I can.
I’m going to stop myself from getting in my way and start chasing goals rather than avoiding them for fear I won’t live up to expectations.

Other peoples’ expectations of me really don’t matter all that much. It’s the expectations I have of myself that I need to pay attention to. If someone else reacts to me a certain way, or hurts me in some way, that’s actually their problem, not mine. That has nothing to do with me and who I am, so it shouldn’t affect how I live my life. And it won’t.

I treat everyone around me very well. I respect people, and I would never tell someone they can’t do something. So why do I tell myself that? And I do it without even knowing it! It’s all these subconscious ideas surfacing themselves in the most inconspicuous ways that are creating barriers in my life.

This post is for me, and a promise to myself. I will love myself more, and believe in myself more. I’m completely capable. I’m a leader. I’m a change agent. I’m intelligent. I’m creative. I’m all the things I think I’m not. I can do anything.

So there, old self! You’re history.