It wasn’t what I envisioned it would be like. Nor did I know before becoming a mom that I wanted to be one.
Okay, so if I haven’t lost you already, who am I? Why do I blog about motherhood? And what is the purpose of my blog, instagram and Youtube channel?
Who am I?
My name is Sarah. I’m a mother of two sweet baby boys: Sully and Izzy. I’m in my late twenties and married to the love of my life Yusuf. My background is Palestinian and my husband’s origin in Egypt. Both of us were born and raised Canadian. Personally, English is my first language. I never stepped foot into an Arabian country until just last year when we visited Egypt.
I mention all of this because it plays a big part of the Why. I’m the oldest of three kids. I’m very close with my parents, well still close with my mom as my father passed away a few years ago to cancer.
If you haven’t seen me yet, I’m muslim. I follow the religion of Islam and I wear the hijab. I’m a muslim mama hijabi blogger – kind of (more on that in a moment).
Why do I blog about motherhood?
I started my picture blog on instagram first to share my experience as a first time mom. Back then it was the easiest way to share that. What I cam e to find later on was that in that limited space, what I had to say wasn’t as valued on the platform as what I showed and that struck a nerve with me, to be honest. You can’t show a real motherhood experience on a platform that boosts and encourages beautiful photos (yes, even those that “show their flaws” take a good look at those photos, they’re still heavily edited).
I had always wanted to start a Youtube channel, so I took a leap of faith and started vlogging about motherhood there last May. It felt much more freeing being able to vocally explain the challenges I faced as a mother from pregnancy, transitioning to two kids, juggling life with a busy toddler (toddler activities, meal ideas, schedules, teaching, etc) and then my life as a homemaker (cleaning, organizing, cooking and all things that come with managing a home).
That felt a lot better. For once, in a long time, I felt like I could really help others by sharing what I was going through. Then I had my second son and I was hit with a different set of challenges that I hadn’t faced with my first and wanted to not only share what I was going through, but also wanted to help others going through the same.
Which brings us to now, this blog. I started this blog to share about motherhood for those that don’t have that experience they envisioned, like I did and want ideas on how to manage. I’ll be posting lots of free printables here for organization, recipes, schedules and more.
What is the purpose?
I mentioned earlier that I didn’t know that I wanted to be a mother, before becoming one. It’s true. When my husband and I first got married, I didn’t have that immense urge to have children that others told me about. I wasn’t even sure if that life was “for me”.
Back then, I worked long gruelling hours as a chef. I loved it. I loved being in a high pressure environment. If anyone reading this is a chef, you’ll know what I mean. I excel under pressure and so that career path was very well suited for me.
I remember my father constantly asking me when we were planning to have kids and at first I was taken aback and even a little defensive about it. I thought, “What? Why are you asking me this? It’s my life. I don’t HAVE to have kids.” But out of politeness and respect towards him, I would just nod and say, “When the time is right”. A year and half passed, then my husband I decided to try for a baby. We figured it would take time anyways and I figured if it happens it happens, but I wouldn’t have been upset if it didn’t happen. Or so I thought.
A year passed and no baby. I was 24 and in good health, so why wasn’t this happening? My dad had become increasingly sick. I started to realize slowly that he was leaving us and all I would have left was my mother and my siblings. So it stirred some deep thought in me that I too would want to leave someone here for my husband if anything were to happen to me. That was my first inkling towards wanting a child.
In May of 2016, I finally conceived and I had mixed feelings about it. I hadn’t told my husband yet, because at that time he was travelling back and forth between two provinces for work and I was caught up with what was happening with my dad. I left work to be with my family. I wanted to be by their sides if and when my dad passed. Little did I know he would pass away less than a month later.
He passed away June, 9th, 2016. That very next day I had a miscarriage. My first one. I didn’t tell a soul about it. I didn’t want to take a single thing or moment away from the gravity of losing my father. It was a lot on my entire family and on myself. I was there by his side when he passed and alone in that miscarriage in the hospital washroom. I would have been 7 weeks along.
I went through a period of wondering if I would be a mother. After having that loss completely on my own, I wanted more than ever to carry again and to be able to share it this time. I didn’t want to go it alone ever again.
Time passed and we moved to a new city in a different province. It was a huge life change. It was around Christmas time when I conceived again and this time I told my husband instantly. We were elated and so ready for this new chapter in our lives. Those who have lost someone they love may understand most that nothing brings spirits back up like a life. Having seen death, all I wanted now was to see the opposite.
Unfortunately, that’s not what happened. As I sat in a hospital room a few weeks later to hear that there was no longer a heartbeat and I was having (another) miscarriage, I felt completely defeated. Now this thing, that I wasn’t keen on becoming (a mother) before was the ONLY thing I wanted to be. It was all I could think about.
The OB who saw me at the hospital is where the story changes. Dr. K was on a shift at the OB triage that day at the hospital. Filling in for another OB that week (which is part of his own private practice). He saw me that day and reached out to me to offer a spot in his very busy clinic as a patient. Until now, people ask me how I got him as a doctor. Truth is, he chose me as a patient.
That week, I went to his office where he began conducting a multitude of tests. I learned that I have PCO (but not PCOS – the syndrome). I learned that some months I had a delayed period, because I wasn’t ovulating and my body would make a tiny cyst on those months around my ovaries. He wrote a prescription for Clomid and told me to come back in a month.
That month my husband and I travelled to Japan. Whilst there I took the medication and when I returned home I had some spotting. I assumed it was a menstrual cycle and went about my week until my appointment. When I went in to his office, he had me take a standard pregnancy test and my husband came along this time to do some testing as well. But then my OB said that it wasn’t needed, because I was pregnant!
We were in disbelief. So much so that he performed an ultrasound to be sure. And before my eyes I saw my sweet Suleiman and heard his beautiful heartbeat. We cried tears of joy and went home with the best news we could have possibly heard that day. Not only was I pregnant, but I was 9 weeks along. Already almost through the first trimester.
I had a rough pregnancy; spotting episodes, progesterone shots, rhogam shots, pregnancy was painful and I was bedridden for most of it. Then I had a 3 day labour when my water broke early at 36 weeks and after 3+hrs of pushing we welcomed our sweet boy into the world on December, 16th, 2017.
Sully had a tough go. He was born tongue and lip tied, he had jaundice, was born late preterm (couldn’t latch) and he had GERD – also colic. My poor baby had a rough start.
Any time something would come up with my baby during pregnancy or in his first year of life I would look into it. I did deep dives into everything. I wanted to help him. I wanted my baby to be happy. I learned so much in doing so. My friends nicknamed me “Dr Mom”, because I was the mom they could turn to with information and valid resources to their babies dilemmas. Until now, I still get tons of daily messages from friends and friends of friends who have questions about their little ones.
I love helping others. I love that the trials and tribulations that I went through and my son went through can help others and maybe even to the point where they don’t go through a trial at all. Thats why I wanted to start all of this. I want to help that mom. I want them to know that they’re not alone. I didn’t have that when I went through it. I would look online and see these moms who lived perfect lives. They were glowing all pregnancy and able to run and workout (which I loved to do outside of pregnancy, but was bedridden). These moms had happy and calm babies that had no issues breastfeeding and never spat up. They went out to cafes and restaurants without fear of a witching hour that would inevitably happen for me EVERY night for 4+hrs. And they lost weight effortlessly while breastfeeding, contrary to what happened to me.
I want to be there for that mom that’s going through what I did. If you’re that mama, know that you are not alone. I know it’s tough, but things do get better eventually. I share what’s helped me and hopefully it helps you over on my YouTube. I’ll also be sharing it here.
If you’ve read this far, leave me a comment and let me know it
Welcome to my blog.