How To Overcome The Struggles Of Motherhood
Do you ever feel alone as a mother or a housewife in your own world? Do you ever feel like your life is the same routine day in and day out? Do you ever feel like your life is going to be the same forever, without anything interesting or exciting happening?
I have, in my own way many struggles, which at times I feel no one would truly understand. I have felt the isolation and boredom with routine. Sometimes those days can become hard and even sad. There are many mothers out there who are struggling with the same challenges daily. Know that you are not alone. Know that Allah (SWT) is always listening. He listens to every caller who calls upon Him and He is the only one that will help you in your deepest, darkest, saddest times. For only He Knows and Sees everything you are going through, and He Alone will you find comfort in.
At times we fail to realize that Allah (SWT) wants us to turn to Him, there is a hidden wisdom behind every difficulty, and during every difficulty, we become the best version of ourselves. For a diamond becomes a diamond through the most intense pressure. I personally have gone, and go through struggles continuously, but have found many ways to make things easier. Here are some of the tips that help me daily with my challenges:
When you fail to realize your blessings, this is when a gratitude journal comes in handy. Make it a habit on a daily basis to write everything you are grateful for that day. It can be the smallest thing like being grateful for the view outside your window. Once you start writing a few things that you are grateful for, automatically your mood will change for the better. Every day you will notice the list getting longer and longer. You will realize there are many great and minor things you are truly grateful for. On the days you feel a little down or overwhelmed, pull out your gratitude journal and start reading through it before you know it, you will feel a million times better. You will realize your blessings are greater than your woes.
As mothers, we are so involved in serving our family, that sometimes we forget our own needs. We tend to get caught up in a world where we live to serve others. There isn’t anything wrong with serving our family, but we must not forget to make time for ourselves. Having a few good friends around is very good for one’s overall health. Friends are a blessing, and finding a good one is hard! It is important to have those social opportunities to make time for friendship. Friends help us remember who we are. We are social creatures and need social nurturing. Daily life with limited interaction can turn a personality bitter and withdrawn.
Adult conversation is very important. If you don’t have some adult interaction throughout the day, you can go crazy! Make the time for a friend, even if it’s calling her on the phone. If you can't do that, at least get out of the house and go for a coffee, visit a bookstore or some place where you can be in a socializing environment. It is natural to feel like a maid instead of a mother when day in and day out you are doing the same thing. Motherhood is about enjoying the process, not getting caught up in your daily stay at home routine, it's not a company you work for.
Be more flexible
If you are using a schedule, chances are your mood is pretty rigid as well. Being a stay at home mother doesn’t mean you are working in a company like I said before. Try to be more flexible. If you homeschool, don’t stress if things are not getting done, remember it is a learning process, so as long as you are doing something productive daily, that’s good enough.
If you are a homemaker, don’t stress about the house being a mess. If people are going to judge you based on how tidy your house is, well, you don’t need those people in your life. Life is too short, and we are only in this world, for what will feel like a second. Look at things from a bigger perspective. When we are six feet under, the messy house won’t matter. Make a plan with the friend or surprise the kids with ice cream after school, it is those memories that will make a positive, lasting impression, not a bitter, tired mommy.
Stop making excuses to your friends, and then you wonder why you have none. Friends are important, but it’s a give and takes relationship. Sometimes we realize the value of things once they are gone, start treasuring them now. Just relax, take a deep breath, and throw that uptight routine schedule out the window!
Do something you love
Finding a hobby or something you truly enjoy will not only bring happiness but a feeling of self-gratification. When you start doing things for yourself, you will remember who you are, not just a mother, and wife, but the person you were before you became those things. What is your innermost passion? Now is the time to go for it. Of course, you have to be realistic. I have an endless list of out of this world things I’d love to do, but I narrowed it down to things that I can actually get done. If you don’t have a hobby, create one! You’d be amazed how much of your creative or hobby time, can make you feel wholesome. Hobbies take you away mentally to a different world. A world where you are solely focused on being in tune with what you love to do.
Go for a drive
Get out of the house and go for a nice drive. I love getting in my car, grabbing coffee and driving, it truly relaxes me. I do this more in the winter, whereas in the spring, and summer, I love walking the nature trails. Driving can be relaxing. I turn on a few Islamic lectures or the Quran and drive listening to beautiful dhikr. It truly calms me and reminds me of how grateful I am to be able to even drive. Did you know many women don’t have that luxury in some countries?
Look at those who have harder struggles
Sometimes all it takes is looking at those people who have it harder than you. Everyone’s struggles are different and when you realize your struggles aren’t as bad, you will start appreciating your life more. Allah (SWT) reminds us in the Quran (2:155)
“And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and loss of wealth, and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient.”
Patience is a virtue, and we have to realize this world is temporary. True success comes with patience and perseverance. We can also realize with the tests, and struggles, that we are very much blessed. In looking at those who have it harder or are struggling in different ways, we appreciate our own struggles. Another great reminder in hadith (Muslim)
“How wonderful is the case of a believer; there is good for him in everything and this applies only to a believer. If prosperity attends him, he expresses gratitude to Allah and that is good for him; and if adversity befalls him, he endures it patiently and that is better for him".
Being a mother is not easy, but it can be enjoyable. As long as we remember to realize we are more than just a mother, and wife, we have our own selves apart from that. In order to give others love, we must love ourselves first. We must find those things that bring out the best in us, not the worst. These small daily rituals have really helped me greatly. I leave you with an anonymous quote I like to implement,
“All trials are not the reason to give up, but a challenge to improve ourselves. Our pain is not an excuse to back out, but an inspiration to move on.”
AUTHOR FOZIA Q. - I am a homeschooling mommy to three beautiful girls. Currently, teach a middle schooler, kindergartener, and my special needs daughter who has downs syndrome. I’m always educating myself about downs syndrome, and different approaches to learning. In my spare time, I enjoy quiet time with tea and a good read. I also enjoy crocheting, and painting. I appreciate deep interaction with my loved ones. While life can get routine and boring at times, I try to add frequent remembrance of gratitude daily. Homeschooling three girls and being a stay at home mom has its challenges, but as a devoted mother and wife, I take my inspiration from the wives of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).