Sunday, May 14, 2017

Dear Beta

Baby M turned 5 yesterday... and I think I'll start calling him Big Boy M because Mashallah, he's all grown up. For the first time, he was actually excited for his birthday and for the entire week preceding his big day, he'd wake up in the morning and the first thing he'd ask is, "Is it my birthday yet?" The night before, I decorated the house with red and blue lanterns and he got a little surprise on the morning of his birthday :)

We celebrated with Nano and Nana Abbu who made it back from the US just in time to have some of their first grandson's birthday cake and we've planned a Paw Patrol themed party for all the school friends on the following weekend Inshalah.

So, my thoughts as your mother...

You've really blossomed over the past 5 years and my love for you only grows stronger. You're much taller now and developing a big boy physique. You're smart and witty and I love your sense of humor/sarcasm (even though you're rather cheeky at times!). I love how you never give up when you're negotiating for something (a new toy, cake for lunch or delaying bedtime) and I hope some day, you'll be negotiating for more important things. You've always been quick to learn new things and I admire that in you... In many ways, you remind me of me when I was small... You're particular about your possessions, clean, tidy and organized and very accommodating most of the time. You're also quite patient with your little brother and nothing warms my heart more than to see you both playing together peacefully. You love reading and your current favorites are The Magic Faraway Tree and The Second Green Goblin Book. Mashalah, you started reading fluently at age 4, 100% self taught... You're good about finishing your homework and you've recently learned how to bathe all by yourself.

My darling beta (pyarzee munna, sinto pinto rio tinto or Musti as your friends call you), I love you with all my heart. May Allah bless you and guide you to become a good Muslim and human being. May you be kind and compassionate, intelligent and accomplished, humble and generous, honest and hardworking. May you and your brother always be close and enjoy a good relationship and be there for one another. May you always be content and enjoy life. And I pray that I can be the best of mothers to my children and be a good role model for them Inshallah. 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Goodbye Karachi

After a much-needed two-year stretch in Karachi, our family will be relocating to Islamabad Inshalah. I have mixed feelings about the move... On the one hand, change is good, it allows one to grow and the kids will get a chance to explore the great outdoors (something you can't really do in Karachi). I may also have better job prospects in Isloo. BUT, I'm going to miss having my parents living 5 minutes away having my back all the time :-(

As a mom of an almost 5 year old and a 2 year old, I can attest to the fact that Grandmothers are indispensable for a mother's sanity. Whenever one of the kids or I fell sick, Ammi was there to sit with the boys, send home-made food and remind me to take time off for myself. Abbu and Ammi were always available to pick and drop the kids from school if I couldn't make it and the only time I managed to attend meetings was when the kids were at Nano's house... I'm getting teary-eyed as I type but it's true. My parents have been my biggest support to date and I can't thank them enough for all they've done for me...

On the marriage front, Mr. F and I have had some lows and highs but I'd like to think we've finally reached a point where we can talk to each other in a civilized manner about almost anything. I've tried really hard to be strong and create a warm and loving environment for the kids. I want to have a strong marriage so that the kids will have a secure childhood and with a lot of prayers and support, things seem to be much calmer on the home front. Alhamdulilah.

I was really lucky to have good domestic help: Sakina Aunty (a 60-year old Amma type nanny for E) and Driver M who has been very reliable over the past two years. I will miss them both dearly and I'm sure the kids will too.

I'll also miss living 2 minutes away from Khadda Market. The fruit and sabzi walla, chicken center, salon, drycleaners, French Bakery, Dossani's, Ami's, MEAT ONE, OPTP, Red Apple, Chatkharay and the TCS Center have all made my life so much easier in the last two years. I love my comfort zone... sigh.  

The prospect of packing up and moving yet again seems rather daunting but I guess I'm something of an expert now? This will be our 6th move in seven years and hopefully I'll be a lot more efficient at deciding what to keep, what to discard and what to buy... Hoping to get everything done in time for Ramadan!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


So much has happened since the last post, it's hard to put it into words. Baby M is now big brother to Baby E and we are now a family of four. I will also Inshalah be graduating in a little over a month and we'll probably be heading back to Pakistan over the summer.

It's been a peaceful 2 years in New Haven (Alhamdulilah). Baby E arrived at 2:20 am in the middle of snow storm via c-section. I was shivering with fright as they wheeled me into the operating theater but the surgery itself was surprisingly painless even though I was awake through it. The recovery period took a lot longer and even walking was a chore for a few weeks but a month later, I'm feeling quite normal. Baby E came a week before his due date but he was only 5 lbs 5 oz (he'd been measuring small but the doctor's didn't detect it earlier) and was having trouble controlling his body temperature so they put him in a baby warmer in the NICU for a week so that he could put on some body fat before letting him come home.

The hardest part for me was leaving Baby M at home. Even though grandma was over to help out with the new baby and to help Baby M adjust to the change in family dynamics, I missed Baby M terribly and cried my eyes out when he'd go home after visiting me at the hospital. He would say, "Mamma, please come back to my house!" with tears rolling down his cheeks. He also got really sick when I was in hospital and I felt horrible for not being able to take care of him. My sweet little Baby M is suddenly grown up now and I guess all babies have to at some point but I'll miss his toddler days and our one-on-one time together. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


I know I haven't written for a looooong time. I was just too busy caught up in the daily grind. Mr. F's traveling for work and his sister's here to provide backup support and watch Baby M while I'm in class. He's been gone for three weeks already and I'm rather overwhelmed trying to get my assignments done while managing groceries, trash, housecleaning and taking care of Baby M. Sometimes, I just want to curl up in bed with a good book and mug of steaming hot chocolate and lose myself in the world of fantasy... sigh.

So last week was full of highs and lows. I was experiencing shortness of breath and a heavy, nauseous feeling and also feeling really really tired, so I went to the health center and took a pregnancy test. On Tuesday afternoon on the way back from class, I started experiencing spotting and slight bleeding and thought I was just experiencing a late period. On Thursday, I got a call from the doctor informing me of a positive test. Turns out I was almost 6 weeks along! 

The bleeding and cramping got progressively worse that night and I guess the hormonal fluctuations were making me sad and tearful. Went for an ultrasound in the morning and it was "consistent with an early miscarriage." In retrospect, I probably should have taken it easy instead of walking 4 miles every day and trying to get everything done but it's too late now... "Surely we belong to Allah and to Him shall we return"

The baby would have been due on December 6th. I'll probably remember that date for a while...

It's funny how the life works. My SIL whom I wasn't close to at all was the one who was there for me when I needed someone by my side, not my mom, not my husband, not my best friend. Funny how tragedies can turn strangers into friends..

“There are some things you can't share without ending up liking each other, and knocking out a twelve-foot mountain troll is one of them.”   

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Pakistani In-Laws: Tact vs. Confrontation

We went to Pakistan for winter break and it was good to see everyone again, gorge on yummy food and attend lots of weddings! But one of the down-sides was having to "save" Baby M from his well-meaning relatives (grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles) who were bent on spoiling him rotten during the time he was there...

I guess I'm already a somewhat paranoid mom but when I returned from a trip to the grocery store to find that 18 month old Baby M had been taken for a drive with Uncle A sitting in the front seat, without someone holding him, without even a seat belt, my patience wore out. Even when we living in Pakistan, we always put Baby M in a car seat and never ever put him in the front seat. Apart from the fact that it's highly unsafe, it's also illegal.

Mr. F was away so I couldn't ask him to speak to speak to his A, so I asked his sister to call Uncle A and ask him to come back. God forbid, had something happened, I'd never have been able to live with myself... Except, everyone now thinks I'm super-arrogant and I'm also raising a mommy's boy... :p