Hi everyone! Happy Friday – we made it to another weekend and I couldn’t be more relieved! This week has been a tough one for me in getting ALL the things done (for school, placement, home.. does the list ever end?) and I had my LAST EVER class for grad school! I will insert a disclaimer that I still have one more course to finish in the next two months, but there is no CLASS time for it so technically, it was my last class! And lets just say that after 5 years of being in a research and clinically intensive program, the end of classes means that one more thing is checked off on the never ending list of program requirements! Also, If you follow me on Instagram and watch my stories, I shared this there too and I received so many supportive messages from YOU which inspired me to write this post. These thoughts have been percolating in my mind since I went back to school in January after a 8 month maternity leave.
Rewind back to July of 2015 when we started talking about having kids – My husband wanted to have a baby like tomorrow. And if you know me, I work with schedules and calendars and lists.. and I was like no the baby can’t come before April. I mean I am totally appreciative of its going to happen when its meant to happen and when God wills it and for all I know it wont happen for a while.. as God willed for us, we got pregnant in August… and if you do the math, the baby was going to arrive on the day that I had my very LAST deadline due for that term (April 25th 2016). God was so incredibly kind to us in giving me that option hehe. And as luck would have, Liyana Maryam arrived on May 4th so I was able to squeeze in a lot more work and check off more things for my program.. because I knew I would be snoozing (from work.. not sleeping haha) once mat leave life hit.
Mat leave was amazing albeit difficulty in the beginning as I struggled with some post partum depression, difficulty breast feeding and generally adjusting to 4-5 hours of sleep versus 12 hours that I was doing while pregnant. But Alhamdullillah, it was a lovely 8 months that I got to snuggle and cuddle with my darling. I had been on Instagram for up to a year at this point but not as active.. and I got back on it during mat leave to connect with other moms and as a way to feel better when sometimes being a new mother can feel quite lonely. All my friends were busy with either school, or placement or work and I was mostly at home changing diapers and cleaning spit up. It was a big reality shift for me where I would be on the go since 7 am until 10 pm on most days. Now my life revolved around keeping a tiny human being alive and it was exhausting and kind of isolating.
Fast forward to now – I am back full time at school all because of the support of my husband and my amazing and incredible father-in-law who takes care of Liyana from 6 am until 4:30 pm when I get home, 4 days a week! He is simply amazing with her and I must say that I would not have been able to go back to school without his unwavering support. Why not day care you may ask? Frankly, it is too expensive for us to afford it at this point. Generally daycare is more expensive for infants under 15 months.. and I only got 6 months off that were covered by benefits. So not going back for 15 months was not a financial option for us and neither was day care. It was at that moment in November 2016 that my father-in-law stepped in and said he would take care of Liyana. I was in utter disbelief! If you are a mom, you know how much work it is to take care of a 6 month old.. and more so when they start crawling and walking. It has been such a blessing to have him around in all ways and it takes so much stress off knowing that I don’t have to get Liyana dressed at 6 am and drop her to day care and rush back in traffic to make it back on time to pick her up. I am just truly very grateful and blessed.
So.. after all that rambling… when I shared that I had finished course work yesterday, quite a few of you messaged me and congratulated me. What I wanted to add was that I could not do it without all the support I have. It truly takes a village to raise a child and in this case my village is the reason why I am where I am. It may seem that I have it all together because I post styled photos or manage to get dinner together or have a healthy baby.. but its because of ALL the unwavering support I have from the people in my life. If you have followed me long enough, you have seen how my house is a disaster on most days. This morning I had to navigate my way through at least 20 pairs of shoes, jackets, car seat, stroller ALL in the front hallway. Simply because we haven’t had time to organize our things this week when the weather is going from Spring back to Winter in 24 hours LOL. But the over all point is that, yes it is difficulty to do a PhD and have a baby and manage a home and get all the things done.. and most days I feel like I am not doing a good enough job at all the things – but then I look at Liyana and think she’s going to be fine. But is somehow doable..
and YOU can also do it! Whether it is to start a small shop or go back to school – any dream that you have YOU CAN DO IT. Just remember that it is okay to ask for help from those around you because they only want to see you succeed and are just waiting for you to ask. And sometimes its okay to not get things right too – those moments where you feel like you aren’t doing a good enough job at any of the things? Those vulnerable moments are the ones that make you human and even the best of us go through them. Don’t be afraid of them but rather share them and you will be amazed at the support that will come your way!
Hope you have a wonderful Friday!