Ramadan Reflections '13, Day 14: The Baby Bump

It seems like pretty much every woman around me is pregnant. Ok, that's an exaggeration, but still...so many of my girlfriends just had a baby or are expecting. Is there something in the water?! Just kidding. I think it's the age range we are in and the number of relatively newlyweds, or those going onto baby #2 or #3, that we know. But seeing women have babies has me thinking about our (InshaAllah) future baby. While Asif thinks more about the future "product"/our new child, the pregnancy process is what looms ahead for me first. And since I've also been thinking about what life as parents would be like, I've come to a stark realization.

I'm scared. Allow me to explain.

God did not endow me with the highest level of pain tolerance. I just about fainted at a public restaurant when a co-worker described her birthing and post-birth experience. I get woozy at any mention of blood, pain, etc. I once fainted in the elevator after picking up my youngest brother from his wisdom teeth removal appointment. I've actually asked moms NOT to tell me about their labour and birthing experience anymore because I've heard (and seen on TV) too many not-so-great stories and each time I do, adoption sounds more inviting. Thank you Hollywood and TLC for injecting an amazing amount of fear into me!

But when I think that all plus 6-billion people on this earth came from a woman's womb, this puts things into perspective, even for a moment. If THAT many women can do it, so can I. Can't I?

I also have to remind myself that an expectant mother's womb does not grow to its completed size right away, and that it takes 9 months and occurs gradually. I wonder how large I'll end up being and if gravity would pull me face forward from the sheer weight of our unborn child.  My mom was fairly large with my youngest brother, and we were all 9 lb plus babies! Gulp. I worry about the edema, back pain, weight gain, and all the other physical symptoms (oh, projective vomit too) that will come along with pregnancy. And then I wonder how so many mothers look gorgeous and glowing when they're expecting...and I have this image of a zombie me.

Apart from pregnancy and the birthing experience, I wonder about our roles as parents. Thanks to social media, it seems as though so many women make the transition seamlessly from wife to mother and they're doing a beautiful job doing it! As if a switch is flicked towards "mother" on the dial, y'all seem so natural at motherhood! No bags under the eyes, an abundance of energy, dashing here and traveling there...are we going to be able to do this? We know that we want our kids to have an active and curiosity filled time, and we have already talked about hiking trips, road trips, biking, visits here and there. We're gonna raise our kids the way WE were raised, darn it, 1980s and all!

I truly think that the development of a fetus into a human being is a miracle and solely due to Allah. Having seen simulation videos of how a fetus develops is amazing...how everything happens in sync and coordination within a womb filled with water, within 9 months. It's amazing subhanAllah and THIS is what I try to focus on. Of course, mothers go through so much for their children, pregnancy and birth being only the beginning. And yes, I know that the miracle of having a child outweighs any physical and mental torment I may have to endure.

And as our child grows older, there's a host of other factors to consider. We would have in our minds a sense of what we want to instil in them, and we'd want to ensure that family was on the same page. It  bugs me when treats and food are used to calm children down or to get them to do what WE want them to do. Or when food is given to kids when we find nothing else to do with them. Our kids will not be tasting juice, pop, or junk food for a long time! We also want them to understand the meaning of "no" and "don't touch" when they're old enough to without re-arranging the entire house. Our kids will not be watching TV nor will they be found playing on a computer or smartphone. Etc! This may sound crazy, but we are serious. We've talked a lot about these issues and others and we believe that it starts from a very young age.

But until the time comes for the "bump", we are doing what we can to prepare. I'm keeping physically fit and eating well, researching into pre-natal care, and learning more about the stages of pregnancy and  motherhood. I don't really think you can know too much, eh?

But most importantly, I'm praying to God each and every day that He guides us when the parenthood time is right, and does what is in the best interest of us and our child.

Oh, and if He could also please reduce labour pain, that would be swell!

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