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“Am I woman enough?”
Life after birth is like before it happened you had something over your eyes and then in the blood, the pain, the loss of dignity, the loss of control, the shock, your eyes are opened.
You see clearly.
When you look at another mother in the eyes, there is understanding between you.
When someone tells you about their birth experience you feel it with them. You have been there too. Before giving birth you know it’s hard. The most painful thing. You know labour can go wrong. You hold on to the positive outlook, the empowering aspect, the hope that all will go to plan. Perhaps even, you can be fascinated with labour, desire it. You ask yourself how you would handle labour? Is simply being a woman sufficient. You wonder , am I “woman” enough? After all, Allah created us to give birth. That is something to have faith in.
You just don’t “know” until after giving birth.
Then. After birth. There is shock. Insha’Allah there is a baby, a new little life, a soul suddenly in your care.
Walking around in circles, the baby is crying. I am crying. Sobbing. “I am sorry, sorry, I just don’t know what is wrong with you”.
How does any woman do this more than once?
Time goes by, you grow, your baby grows. Perhaps your belly swells again. Then one day you realise you are a woman, and all that has passed has made you stronger, and the second time around you really do know why the baby is crying. Or at least you are less phased by it. You take it less as a sign of personal failure. You get that knowing smile mothers have.
You made Jihaad (Personal struggle) . Insha’Allah (God Willing) Allah is pleased with you. After all what is Jihaad if it is not to help us to grow, and what Jihaad is easy?
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