Thursday, July 7, 2016

Let's try Mumsy!

"I can try Mumsy! I know I will be able to do it" That's what Little Missy told me. Ok! So let's rewind a little:
Z was trying to write some words, and her hand writing wasn't neat enough (according to Ms. Z). So she kept on erasing and doing it again. I didn't want to see her struggle (well, actually, I didn't want to hear "Oh No! Not again" for the nth time). 
I told her "Sweetheart! Please just leave it for the time being. We can try it later." 
And that's when came her reply "I can try Mumsy! I know I will be able to do it".

She tried to walk with a lemon and spoon, she failed, didn't give up, and on the 5th day, she finally did it...

That's something she does every single day, she shows me she can do much better than what she's done. She never wants to give up before she's achieved the results she wants. Though let me tell you... she'll only do those things with this attitude, which she willingly wants to do.

This was something I usually don't expect from a 5 year old. Believe me, I work with kids, and I say so many 5 year old children give up... without trying, "I don't want to do it", "it's boring", I can't do this"... I hear these things very often.

And then, I've seen so many parents push their children... the more they push, the more kids resist. They might do something out of respect or fear but not out of the sheer joy of doing it.

We've never pushed Z, I mean right now, she's too young, but we don't intend to do that in future. Of course, we might suggest what to do, what not to do when needed... but eventually, she takes the decision. Maybe that's the reason why she's not scared or too tired to try. Maybe her eyes sparkle after she's achieved something, because she knew she'll do it.. Maybe this trait of hers will take her places, Insha'Allah. Maybe this is nothing to feel proud about, for any of my readers, but it's definitely a little victory for me and Faizan as parents.

I do keep complaining about lots of things Z does, but then there are many many more things that I love her for... I'm super proud of... And I'm immensely proud of this quality of hers. I can see so much of me in her, when I see her determination, a stubborn streak, when she gets after something. She needs to get it done. As we say in Urdu 'Junoon sawaar ho jaata hai'.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Yes! I took up the #MotherhoodChallenge

Yes, I took up the #MotherhoodChallenge early this year.  I don’t regret based on a few blogs floating around claiming how the #MotherhoodChallenge was insensitive and not well thought off. 

Image courtesy scoopnest

What is ironic about the whole situation is that some parenting bloggers are writing their voice against the challenge. Why? Don’t they celebrate motherhood on social media every single day? The #MotherhoodChallenge is a celebration of sorts as well.

Well call it a dare, a challenge, a celebration… Being a mom is a huge part of my identity and I wear this badge with pride. I (Alhamdulillah) feel, this is one of the biggest blessings of God. The biggest and the best…. I also feel, it is one of the biggest challenges of my life. Parenting isn’t easy; I don’t have a guide for being a mom who is perfect.

OK, judge me, but hear (in this case, read) me out first.... I face challenges every day. Starting from a C-Section, a long-drawn recovery, depression, weight gain, and then exercising each day and thinking before I keep a single morsel of food in my mouth (best part is, it hardly shows)... What about sleepless nights, taking decisions for the child. What about those nights spent in the hospital, when I didn't sleep a wink... OK, only a mother lives in a Zombie like state for years... Dressing up for me is jeans and a shirt and not my workout clothes... scheduling our lives around the child. And what about being judged constantly... 24*7

Sometimes, I just have to take a shot, without even thinking where or what will happen next. Am I doing the right thing? I just have take that risk at times. So, there you go, motherhood (parenting in general) is challenging and risky as well… Why can’t we call it a challenge or a dare? Why do we always have to stick to socially acceptable terms to express ourselves? It is a challenge, a risk, a dare and of course a celebration. 

Talking about being insensitive, I cannot even imagine the pain a mother goes through when she loses her child. Her loss is something I don’t want to think about, because it gives me jitters. I know it’s tough, but as they say life must go on.

We, all of us, have certain blessings that help us live our lives happily. We also (all of us) have certain tragedies we deal with. All tragedies are equally bad… when I lost my A.J (dad), or when I lost touch with my family, or when a childhood knee injury, at the age of 10, gave me a permanent knee pain for life… I did go through a lot. That doesn’t mean I mourn every time I when my friends tell me about incidents/moments spent with their dads. On the contrary, I remember dad, my eyes get moist, but there is a precious smile that comes on my lips. I do have my mom (Alhamdulillah), but we have so many differences, we are like chalk and cheese. We hardly speak to each other, coz when we do, we argue. 

Our blessings... I prefer celebrating my life (Alhamdulillah), and thanking God for what I have. I do feel the pain, every time I think of my sorrows and my challenges, but my blessings make me a happier person. 

People are going on and on about the challenge, the DARE... Why are we missing the point here? Well, it a challenge, a risk, a dare... It is also a CELEBRATION... Why can't mothers be allowed to celebrate? And, as I read somewhere... the best part is this challenge is about all the moms out there... ' foster mums, adoptive mums, step mums, biological mums, mums who’ve lost their little ones, and mums from all walks of life share their own experiences with the world.'

I know I will receive a lot of flak for this article, so be it. I have always been pretty vocal about my feelings; I have never been ‘politically correct’. And I’m a pretty strong believer of ‘to each their own’. 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Manners... We Care

Manners, a word we tend to forget about and/or we think, we are too cool for manners. Unfortunately, the truth is manners make you cool. I've (we, hubby & I) always been particular, that our 5 year old always says her thank you, sorry, excuse me, pardon, from her heart... It comes very naturally to her. 
Today, in the morning, when she spoke to my house help (who she refers to as Aunty) in a loud tone, I was sure she needs to apologize. When she didn't, I took the matters in my hands. Instead of forcing her to apologize, which wouldn't have solved the purpose... I had this conversation with her:
Me: You did something wrong in the kitchen, do you remember?
Z: No.... Hmmmm what Mumsy?
Me: Think about it... Something you said to Aunty.
Z: (after thinking) Maybe I shouted at her.
Me: You did certainly shout at her.
Z: oooo... Sorry Mumsy.
Me: You need to apologize to Aunty
Z: (trying to avoid it)...but I'm scared
Me: No Z, you have to do this. You have to apologize.
Z: Can I get some time out (that's the phrase she uses when she wants to be left alone)
Me: Sure, but you know what to do...
After 2-3 minutes, she entered the kitchen apologised to the house help, smiled at her, gave a little hug and went back in her room... After a couple minutes I entered her room. Another thing, we believe in as a family is giving space to each other. I sat beside her, squeezed her hand
Z: Thank you Mumsy.
Me: (smiling) Do you feel better now?
Z: Yes Mumsy, I love you.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Book Review - The Midnight Library

Imagine a library opened through the night, with the most amazing books to read... with an adorable little librarian and a few library helpers, who are nocturnal. Imagine visitors facing problems of one kind or another and the librarian helping them with the perfect solution. I got this and much more from The Midnight Library by Kazuno Kohara (I would like to thank an acquaintance here, who introduced me to the wonderful world of Kazuno Kohara). I love the author, and The Midnight Library is the best of his work, I have read thus far.

When I heard about The Midnight Library, I knew I had to pick it up. When I did, I could see a lot of myself in the book, and so did Z. 

The book takes you (and the child of course) to a beautiful world of the The Midnight Library. And what a world it is. Z was totally mesmerised by the book and she has read the book over and over again, since. This book is simple. The magic of this book lies in its simplicity, the illustrations and sweet little situations, which any child who frequents a library would relate to.

If you are looking for a nice soothing bedtime read for your 3-5 year old The Midnight Library by Kazuno Kohara is a perfect pick.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

To Be a Girl's Mum

** This post was written for MyCity4Kids

When I was pregnant, I so wanted to have a baby girl, but something inside me told me I'll have a baby boy. I did try to prepare myself.

On the 26th of November, 2010, I was pleasantly surprised when I held my precious little baby in my arms. I confirmed and re-confirmed it with Faizan, and then I just couldn't hold back my tears. My parents brought 3 daughters in this world, 3 head strong, independent, very opinionated daughters. And I was blessed with one on that day.

In these 5 blessed years, I have experienced a lot of moments, moments which were extraordinary, moments where I wanted to tear my hair, moments where I consoled her and moments where she gave me a shoulder to cry on.

I can talk to her and I know she's listening, she'll not zone out. I might not be the 'only girl' in the family, but I truly have a BFF in my family. Someone I can completely rely on, and I can talk to whenever and wherever I want. I know I'll never be 'judged'. I'll always be the best for my Z.

When I hear some people go...

'Oh My God! Girls are so cute, pretty dresses, clips, dolls..."
"Do you play dress up everyday???"
"Awwwww! Do you have to hide your make up already?"

Let me tell girls might be all this (might), but they are much much more.

Well, Z gets lots of cute dresses (as well as jeans, shorts, shirts) and clips, not because we play dress up... but because, I have good taste ;-). Her hair is long and nice, but she prefers tying it in a bun or high pony when she goes out cycling or playing. She doesn't like dolls (yes you heard that). No, she doesn't like makeup maybe because she rarely sees her mum use it.

Being a mum of a girl is way way way beyond all these Ahhhhh, Oooohhhh, Awwwwws.

Unlike the popular belief, Z shares a beautiful relationship with not just her Fizz, but with her mum as well. She gets pampered rotten by her dad and looks up to her mum... Everyday when I get up, I have to make sure I set the right examples for my 5 year old, because she looks up to me. I'm her favorite and so is her dad (girls know how to balance relationships, and so do boys. In fact, any child raised in a sensible manner will love her/his parent, I'd like to believe this).

She is emotional, strong, dramatic (very), funny, all this and much more... She's my little bundle of joy. I can hug her, kiss her, cuddle her and I will not get those 'what are you doing mom' looks.

Beside books, she loves her Lego set, her kitchen, her crayons, her racing cars and her bike. Whatever she does, she completely gets engrossed into it. You should see how creative she can get with her colors as well as her legos.

I have always maintained how blessed I feel when I think of Z and how she has made our life beautiful. I don't know how it is to have a son, but I, as a mum feel, I'm lucky to be a girl's mom... I'm lucky to have a daughter like Z. Alhamdulillah

Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015...the year the was.

I did start blogging actively in 2015, but unfortunately, I was not able to keep the momentum going. Overall this was a good year, though we as a family did have to go through two huge losses in the year. My dad-in-law and my grand mom expired, this meant, I had to explain the concept of death to Z. We were able to do pretty well on that front, she did get a little upset though.

Professionally, Alhamdullilah, I did pretty well. I did start a kid's reading library of my own, I realized a childhood dream. It is not easy to balance entrepreneurship and mommiehood, but it is not impossible, actually it is absolutely worth it.

Enough about me, since the name of this blog is Being Zoe's Mum, let us talk about the person whose always in spotlight, at least as far as BZM is concerned. Here are a couple of things which happened in 2015:
  • We graduated to chapter books, we still don't want to let go of our picture books (Mum hopes we never do that). Roald Dahl, Enid Blyton and Amelia Bedelia Chapter books are our favorite. 
  • We visited Mussoorie, such a beautiful beautiful place. 
  • We made lots of new friends.
  • We got a new hangout, the Reading Room (Oh! I love that place, I can sit there for hours)
  • We had our first dental operation, and everyone says I was super brave
  • We had our first birthday party
  • We turned 5 (yay!)

I hope 2016 turns out to be totally rocking, happy and super healthy for Z, Fizz & Me. Here's wishing the same for all of you.