April 13, 2011

Just A Mom

Moms, ever feel under-appreciated?  I don't want to write a post listing all the things we, as moms do and all the occupations we provide, I probably already have. I also don't want to write about the big mom debate regarding working vs stay at home moms. I just want to write about my feelings. They have more to do with being a mother than they have to do with working or not.

Sometimes, I feel insignificant.  Like a fixture in the house. Just someone who is there to do what people need. Tie shoes. Iron clothes. Cook food. Pick up the dirty socks. I suppose it should make one feel needed but when you're only conversation  consists of demands and requests on any given day, it kinda hurts. The almost 13 and the 11 year old  have started getting an attitude at times and I'm pretty sure it's tame compared to some older teens but the annoyed tone and the eye rolls hurt too.

I think that kids don't think of their mom as an actual person in and of themselves, until they are older. My older two have started to notice things like my favorite shows or that I write a blog, but for the most part, they think of me as mom. The go-to person when they need something for school or want a snack. And that's natural. It's my job to take care of them and I don't resent it. It's only once in a while that I have a day or a week that makes me feel that it's a thankless job and I'm pretty much a servant. It seems to them that a clean dish is just magically there, and it doesn't cross their mind how their clothes are clean again in their drawers sometimes. I'm not complaining that I have to do these things. It's just frustrating that they don't acknowledge it.

E is often salve on the wounds though, he lets me know he appreciates what I do or voices these things in front of the kids. He'll tell them to thank me for the nice dinner and remind them that we each have a role in the family and what would happen if Mama just stopped washing our clothes or making your lunch?  Alhamdulillah, it helps a lot.

I'm not one of  those martyr moms that feel like their children are their every living breath, that have no life outside of them. I also don't feel that being a mother is a sacrifice, in anyway. I 'm in the middle. I love my kids. I also like them, in fact. I like the people they have become and their unique personalities. I enjoy spending free time with them. I look at the tough times, the daily monotony, the discipline, all of that as an investment. It keeps me sane sometimes and other times I lose it. When no one is listening, when they won't stop fighting and I've had enough. There have been times where I've wanted to hide. Times that I'm counting the minutes until bedtime. Maybe that makes me sound like a bad mom, but I know all moms have those days too.

Mostly, moms just want to feel valued. I know in my head, rationally, that my family appreciates what I do for them but there are always those moments where you feel walked all over. It's almost a longing to feel important or to have someone worry about you instead of you being the one doing all the worrying. In the end, I'm doing my best and I know when they get older, inshaAllah,  they will look back and see me, their mother, as a person, like I did with my mom.

12 comments:

  1. Assalaamu alaikum :)

    I really like this post, Mama Mona! And it reminds me that even if no one here appreciates what moms do for their families, insha'Allah on the day of Judgment the mothers will receive a great reward from Allah swt for all that they have done :)

    Looking back, I feel guilty thinking about how I treated my mom when I was a teen. Insha'Allah I can make up all of those eye rolls and harsh comments to her!

    BTW- I totally love reading your blog. You have such cute style and I love hearing your opinions :)

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  2. Gosh i am sooooo feeling you right about now! i was almost in tears when abdulr came home with his award for taalib mithaly with not only a certificate for him but for his father too! it was like thank you sir for your hard work. like, what about little old mom? ugh! anyway, i shared on fb hope u don't mind :-))

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  3. Thank you for this post. I sometimes wonder if I am alone in these same feelings n I just only have a 9 month old. I think it is absolutely wonderful your hubby is trying to be on your team and present those opportunities to the babies. I hope mine would do that in the future but if not my go to item is take a break, hang out with the girls, or travel if possible. Absence really puts things into perspective and even the most loving people need their space. If you have to tell yourself that you are awesome do it..sometimes we just have to do things ourselves.

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  4. I feel exactly the same at times. *exactly* the same.
    But unlike you sometimes I think when they're all grown up and living their own lives, they won't remember the sacrifices I've made, because I'm their step mum. Maybe they will Allah knows best.

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  5. I feel the same way at times!! I loved how nicely you put it. You know, I think you're spot-on about kids generally not appreciating their mothers until they become older. I never fully appreciated my grandmother (who raised me) until I became a mother. My husband feels the same way. I feel so regretful about ever coping an attitude with her now. Maybe it is just the cycle of things...

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  6. I feel you on this sis, :). I know what you mean about feeling under appreciated. I always bring my thoughts back to who i am really doing all that I do for my family for (Allah s.w) and why I really don't mind doing it (for love and joy) and I can agree that it's nice some times to hear a thank you mom, I love you mom, and a hug and a smile. I know we mom's have one of the most under rated jobs in the world, but also the most fulfilling, imo. Motherhood is the gift that keeps on giving in this life and in the hereafter, insha'Allah

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  7. Convert_chica, Alaikum alsalam, Thank you. It's been rolling around in my head for a while. InshaAllah I have faith. Thanks for the compliments.

    Asiya, I would be as well. I find it odd that they single out the Dad when most moms in Egypt are the ones who help kids with the majority of their studies. Thanks for the shout out.

    Is-za, Wow, you're welcome, I just wanted to get it off my chest. I worried about people judging me for complaining but I think most moms are real about this. I agree, I think absence is a good thing sometimes. Even if I go to run an errand on my own I feel missed.

    Happy Hijabi, That breaks my heart, but I think that step mom or not, they will see what you did and recognize it when they are old enough. :)

    lala, Yea the never ending cycle. It's really a shame but I suppose that's just how it works.

    zanjabil, Yea just a tiny bit of appreciation makes it come so easy and even enjoyable.

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  8. I think it's safe to say that EVERY mother feels this way on occasion.

    They should have included in the job description: "WARNING: Most days you will feel more like a servant than the Queen that you really are"! :D

    May our children be a source of sadaqah jaariyah for us, Insha'Allah.

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  9. This made me look at my mom differently. Especially when you said conversations consist of demands and requests. I've never had a conversation with my mother... not at all. As you said it's just demands and requests. I don't know how I could function without her so believe me as children we DO feel grateful for our mothers. Especially when we listen to our friends and their parents. LOL I tend to say THANK GOD for my mom! compared to the personalities of some of my friends' parents. Mona, you sound like such a funn mom, begad, with the cookies, DYI projects, the trips everything. Maybe they won't notice it because its an everyday thing but they'll think back to it. I tend to do that A LOT with my mom. If it helps go on vacation for a little bit without them and that'll put their relationship with you into perspective. Our mom left for almost a month. Our house was dysfunctional lol our dad believed buying everything would fix problems :P

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  10. Tahasmum6:56 AM

    I've been reading your blog for quite a while (lurking actually :-)) and I think you're an awesome mum! I have a 2 yr old and I can't imagine how you and other mums like you raise 4 masha Allah. Rabena yebarklokom fee awladkom ya Rab!

    It's true that mums spend most of their time "serving" their children, but I believe that children should learn that clothes don't magically appear in their closets and plates don't wash themselves. We helped out a lot ever since we were little... I remember folding laundry, washing dishes, vacuuming etc with my 2 brothers many a Saturday morning!

    I think your kids will grow up to see the wonderful person that you are :-).

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  11. HijabiMommy, That's a great quote :)Ameen, inshaAllah.

    PerfectlyImperfect, aw you're sweet, thanks for the perspective and the boost.

    Tahasmum, Welcome, thanks for commenting. My kids have to clean their own rooms and help out sometimes with things but it's hard when school is so intense here there's not a lot of time. In the summer it's better. We all clean together sometimes. Thanks for the sweet comment and please feel free to comment more often. :)

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  12. I'm not a mother but it was only last year (don't judge me) that I realised how selfless a woman has to be in order to be a good Mum. I'm not saying selfless means not caring about yourself at all but you do have to let go of some ideals and personal wishes because you know your family depends on you.

    Being married with kids means not living life according to your own whims and fancies all the time. It is a sacrifice but one that will rewarded with Jannah inshaAllah =)

    Your kids are growing up every single day and slowly they will increasingly come to realise how invaluable your love and dedication is. We can tell you are a wonderful Mum mashaAllah and your kids are super lucky to have you!

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Thanks for commenting!