Friday, December 25, 2015

One Year, Seven Months, Two Days...

Dearest Jude,

This post is a couple of days late. We have been busy getting the house ready for Tete and Jiddo. They came last night, Dec. 24th. Your baba, yourself and I went and picked them up from the airport. You were tired as it was bedtime, and were running around in the terminal climbing over the baggage conveyor belt thingamajig. You and I were also counting baggage carts by pushing in a screw right by the handle and counting them that way. I don't know if you would remember this or not, but you were enjoying counting that way and seemed to have fun doing it.

This is your first time meeting Jiddo face to face. You have been shy around both Tete and Jiddo but more so around Jiddo. Also, I think you caught the flu from Sarah and Sam from across the street. They came and played with you at the house on the 23rd. But it is hard to say, since you still use your sookie even though you have been good and only using it for sleeping for a while, you have gone back to using it all the time. I would think with the number of times you have dropped it and picked it up to stick it back in your mouth again, you were bound to catch something.

You are napping now between baba and I. You must have been exhausted. You are not eating very well. But you have always been long and lean mashallah. I would like to see more meat on your bones but I know that you know when you are hungry. I just don't want you missing out on anything due to communication problems between you and I/us. You still give me a heck of a time at diaper-changing, not sure why you cry and scream like you do. I wish I knew so that I would make you feel better and make the experience less stressful, until you start using the potty that is. All in good time inshallah.

I love you my dear dear boy with all my heart. If I am hard on you, I am truly sorry. Know that I am ten times harder on myself when I am hard on you. That is not an excuse, you deserve respect, love, and care, because you exude those qualities. You have a heart of gold my darling boy. I love you.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Your Eighteen Month Check-up Update...

Dearest Jude,

You are exactly eighteen months and 4 days old. I took you to Dr. W for your check-up and you took your injection like a champion. Your measurements are:
weight 23 pounds
height 89.5 cm
head circumference 48 cm

You are growing up mashallah. You are just lovely. I think you are starting the terrible twos early. But I think the tantrums are a result of your frustration with the inability to communicate with us.

I love you my darling and big boy!


Monday, November 23, 2015

One Year, Six Months...

Dearest Jude,

You and I got our flu shots a couple of days ago and got you weighed. You weigh exactly 10.8862 kg. I was concerned about your eating and was told that you are doing ok. We suspect that your gums are bothering you as you are getting more teeth in. We believe that you now have 12 teeth in total.

You are eating a LOT of pickles these days. You prefer using your hands as opposed to using utensils. Honestly, as long as you are eating. You are learning more vocabulary and are catching on to a lot more things than we are giving you credit for. Mashallah you are very smart. You are also developing a saucy personality and tend to have a bit of temper if you don't get your way. I believe a lot of it is due to frustration due to your inability to communicate your needs.

You are now upset because I am not letting you climb out of your high chair. I love you with all my heart. Your baba, khalo Mo, tete, jiddo, grammie and sissies love you very much.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

One Year, Five Months, Two Days...

Dearest Jude,

حبيب قلبي جود

Today you are seventeen months and two days old. So this blog post is somewhat late.

This has been an interesting month. On October 19th, the country has had a federal election, as a result of which, Stephen Harper will no longer be Prime Minister. Justin Trudeau from the Liberal party has won. I have high hopes from him. I hope that I won't be disappointed, but I very much doubt that I won't be. I am not a pessimist by nature, which might seem ironic and contradictory, but I reserve my pessimism to dark moods and moments, otherwise I have the highest hopes and faith in God and people.

You are speaking jebberish. But we are very happy that you are. Your voice is the sweetest. I imagine that it is what an angel's would sound like. You no longer have only eight teeth, you are getting your molars and are waking up throughout the night as a result. Speaking of which, you are sleeping in your own little bed now, mashallah. You have a cool blue race car bed all to yourself, courtesy of your sister Alana's mom, Paula.

We have no height or weight for you, as we haven't seen Dr. White this month.

I don't know if you will remember, but this month, I took in a girl who is almost three, in an attempt to get an in-home daycare situation set up at the house. I figured it would be a chance to make a living while staying home with you. The girl's name is Charliegh. She is a sweet girl and has only stayed with us for a week. I believe that you liked her and wanted so much to have a playmate. She went on to another daycare closer to her mom's work. I don't know if there will be more kids. I would like for you to have playmates that you can run around, talk jebberish and laugh and play with. I know it must be tough to not have siblings who are close in age to you and I am sorry about that. Who knows what might change after this is written? Inshallah khair.

It is 1:17am on the 25th of October. Syria is being air raided by Russia in an attempt to help Assad get rid of "terrorists". As a result of this, Jiddo's village has been bombed and the family home that he and tete were building there got destroyed. I hope that the Syria situation is resolved quickly so that the family would unit again and so that baba and you would be able to get to know your syrian heritage and see your mama's home land. It really is beautiful.

The above picture was taken today at Horse shoe Lake Island by the Rotary. You were chasing after the ducks and seagulls. I hope you have fond memories of those days and outings.

I love you my darling son. You are my angel and my everything.


Thursday, September 24, 2015

One Year, Four Months...

My dearest Jude,

You are getting very big mashallah. You are not eating as well as I would like. But, alhamdellah for everything. This is one day late, I am writing this on Eid Al-Adha. You got a couple of gifts and lots of balloons. To me it feels empty without your tete and jiddo and my family. It is sad when you feel cut off and I hope you never feel that way. You have Auntie Lynne, Grammie and cuzzies Kaliegh and Brianna. They are older but they are just a 10 minute drive away. You have your sissies around. Again, big age difference but inshallah you will always be close. I hope that as you start going to school that you will have good friends and that maybe we will have extended family through you and the connections we make, to make up for my cousins and aunts and uncles, who are your cousins and aunts and uncles too! they love you so much and are always asking about you and wanting to see pictures of you. You are so blessed alhamdellah to be loved by people from all over the world.

We just got back from a mini vacation planned by your baba around the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton. It was an amazing trip and you seemed to enjoy yourself very much. You can see the pictures on your Peekaboo account inshallah. I hope that we will be able to maintain that for as long as possible so that you can have pictures from your babyhood amd childhood when you are older.

I love you so much my darling! بحبك يا حبيب قلبي

Sunday, August 23, 2015

One Year, Three Months...

Dearest Jude,

This month has seen us saying goodbye to your Tete, yet again. She left on Friday, August 14th, around noonish. You and Baba saw her off at the airport. She cried as she was saying goodbye to you, I was told. She cried a few times after she got home to Jiddo in Kuwait, as she missed you so much. You are not easy to part with, because you get very upset when someone whom you are used to seeing on a daily basis tries to part with you. And you are so good, sweet, funny and kind, that it makes the act unbareable.

I don't know how much you remember from this age, but I hope that this year will be a foggy one in your mind. This was not my best year, as you could tell. I feel very guilty about how bad my mood has been, how it affects the people I hold so dear, and whom give my life so much meaning.

You are walking up and down the hallways of the house. You get yourself off our bed with expertise now. The gate at the top of the stairs has to be locked at all times. We can tell that you are catching every little word or action you are witnessing from us, so both baba and I are trying to watch our language around you. You seem to be studying words and things a lot more closely, and then when you decide that you have perfected them, they make an appearance. An example would be "meowing". When we are trying to reach you about animals, we are teaching you the sounds they make. And one day, you decided that in your head you have perfected the "meow" and let out the cutest meow I have ever heard. And you know that mama loves her kitties very much, so this was amazing to me.

At your last doctor's appointment, you weighed 22 pounds and 5 oz. You were 85 cm long. So we got the O.K. from Dr. White for you to be forward-facing in your carseat. You seem to be really enjoying the views and keep looking ahead to see where we are going.

Oh my how you make me happy. You truly bring joy to my heart. Not only me, everyone who meets you. Mashallah mashallah mashallah you are a blessing.

Please, don't forget Allah in all the you do. Without Him, your life will literally be nothing. Without His blessings, we would not have had you and all the other blessings we have. Not only do we have a roof over our heads, living siblings and parents to look after us and help us out, food to fill our bellies, clean water to drink, a peaceful land that lets us live our lives the way we choose to live them. Do not take all of those blessings for granted. Even if, God forbid, when you read those words, some of those blessings are not in your life, even if there is negativity, thank God for it. Because you would not know your blessings unless you have had negatives. You would not have the light of the sun without the darkess that had fallen before it. Never forget Allah, He loves you and us so very much. Pray as much as you can, help out those who need help. Do good and then throw it into the ocean, don't expect a "thank you" from anyone for it, because deep down I hope that you are doing good deeds for Allah's sake. Follow all the five pillars as much as you can. Use them as a guide to your life. The Prophets Peace Be Upon Them all, were sent to us as an example to follow, so do that.

I love you so much my dearest boy. Even if I may have a hard time showing it, please know that I will always love you.


Thursday, July 30, 2015

About Mental Illness...

I felt the need to enter something into our little "diary" today, as I have been thinking of writing something to you about this topic for a while. It just so happens that today made itself into the day on which to write.

I started today very early. I was up pretty much the whole night. So understandly when you and baba got up, I was exhausted. I got you to sleep with me until around 9-9:30. As soon as you were fed I decided to get my butt in gear and to drop off a few things at that Bayers Westwood Community Centre. I have never been there before, and as you may know, I am notorious for getting lost in my own back yard. So, it took a lot longer than expected to get there. I had to stop a few times and ask pedestrians and drivers alike, for directions. On one of those stops, a great looking shaved poodle decided to go out for a run, with his owner frantically running after him. No amount of doggie treats, biscuits or friendly drivers could get the dog to stop running back and fro. And understandably the cars that were on this side street just off of Dutch Village Rd. did not want to drive while this great dog was frantic and pacing. It took a car with a lady and a great dog to slow him down and to get him in their car so that he can be reunited with his owner who was standing in the middle of the street, with a handful of treats, calling for him and begging him to return. There is a point, I promise.

It took me at least 5 stops/tries before I actually got to the centre, and that involved a complete stranger, who I happened to have asked an hour earlier for directions, to actually tell me to follow him in his car. I was so frustrated with myself, confused, embarrassed, irritated and thankful all at once. I could not help but hug the guy and furiously thank him for his kindness. And just as he was leaving he got out of his car and asked me if I needed more assistance. I started crying. I thanked him again a many more number of times. He graciously accepted my thanks and went home.
I was talking to the director of the centre when I finally got there and mentioned to her how lost I was trying to get there. She apologized. I explained that there was no need and that because of getting lost, I gained an appreciation for humanity again. I think that whenever I have doubts about the kindness of the human race, I will hopefully look back to this situation, and how like that confused poodle, frantically running back and forth, I was plucked out and returned to my path in life by a stranger's kindness, by my mother's hugs, by my dad's words, by your dad's unrelenting patience.
I am a sufferer of depression and anxiety. I have no qualms in admitting this. I am not embarrassed nor am I ashamed. I understand that it is an illness. I no longer believe that it is the "illness of the spoiled". I believe that some defeatist attitude, associated with my generation, is a major contributor. However, I truly believe that, just like your dad says, it is a disease whose sufferer can not be faulted, just like diabetics.

I can think back to when we found out that we were coming to Canada. That is when I remember having anxiety attacks. I was in grade 11 and was told that my grades needed to be top notch to get into Dalhousie. If I knew then that anyone with a B average is accepted into Dalhousie, I would not have worried about things so much. I was for most of my life an A student. I studies hard, and had parents who did everything in their power to ensure that my brother and I had no reason not to be in the top of of classes.
The anxiety attacks started happening around major assignment and project due dates, as well as before tests and finals. Study partners were always told by their parents that I was playing a trick. That I was trying to get them unnerved. That was obviously not the case. My chest pains and uncontrollable need for weeping could not have bee  a ploy to do anything of the sort. I would have been a sadist if that was the case.

Grade 11 for me, was the first year ever in which I received no recognition or high honors.

When we got to Queen Elizabeth High School, in Halifax, my study habits came with me, and so did my anxiety. To combat this, I stayed after school and made sure that my teachers were at my disposal. I made the effort to speak to them and to let them know that I was there to get the highest grades possible and that I wanted to do well. My goal/your tete and jiddo's goal was for me to be a doctor. So that was the reason I gave to my teachers as to why I was a pest when it came to asking questions and staying with them after school.

Dalhousie came and went, and my grades were not the highest. I was less anxious. But I was more melancholy. Nothing seemed to be wrong, but everything was wrong. When I was at that place, nothing would pull me out. I would sink into a turbulous sea of negative thoughts and it would take dags for me to swim out. I saw a doctor. I was referred to a staff psychologist. Some issues from my past were discussed and blamed, and I was given a prescription. It did not help. In fact, it made things worse. To this day, I blame it for the memory problems I have.

I went off the medication and tried to deal with things on my own. I buried myself in school, and not just studying, but socializing and trying to distract myself. And for a while, it worked. I ended up going back to school at Mount Saint Vincent University and some issues with the Applied Human Nutrition program assisted in the old issues resurfacing and taking central stage. That along with an unhealthy marriage, got me back into a psychologist's office. This time I was happy and relieved. I could not live Martian Abou-El hajj more. Again medication was discussed and again it was prescribed and taken. It worked well for a while.
I got married to your baba and the greatest surprise I have ever had, came into my life. Along with you, however, also came feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy. I felt and still struggle to keep at bay, the self harming and ruinous feeling of not deserving you. Of not being good enough. Those feelings inadvertently contributed to me, on occasion, trying to distance myself from you and your baba, from your grammie and auntie Lynne, from your tete and jiddo, and from everyone else, friends and strangers alike.
I don't know if you will remember this, but right now I have written on the dresser mirror, in our bedroom, the following:

I am in Control
I am Worthy
I am Thankful

The reason why I am telling you all of this, is for you to have an explanation, as to why you will remember me in a positive light some times and in a negative one other times. I want to make it very clear that I have always loved you, even before you were conceived. That you were and always are wanted, and needed. That my behaviour at times was not a reflection on you. If you remember me as an angry person at times, it is probably because I was an angry person some times. I was bubbly, over joyous, sad, weepy, tired, and all the range of emotions in between. I was and still am struggling to get through the days. It would have been nice for you to have a mother who did not go through those phases. And I realize that I am being unrealistic, since those ranges of emotions exist in all of us and are experienced by all mothers out there. I just notice them more because I am paying attention to my moods. That is another part of this illness. I feel like I am self absorbed, and then I feel guilty about being self absorbed.

I hope and pray that your baba and I will show you, whether through example or the power of suggestion, that it is ok to be emotional. It is ok to get upset, sad, desparate, melancholy. The human range of emotions is vast and is to be experienced during one's lifetime. I just need to tell you that if you are feeling something, verbalising it or writing it down, is a great idea. It gives you the power of self analysis. Analysis will then hopefully lead to isolating the issue and then resolving it. I know this might be to complex or philosophical, but this will not only assist you with deciphering feelings and emotions. Inshallah this kind of thinking, critical thinking and cognitive behavioural analysis and therapy, would assist you in your every day life, academic life, professional life, and personal life.
I am rambling I know. But I need to impress on to you the importance of letting yourself feel. Whatever emotion you are feeling, it is important to study it and to let it pass. Supressing it just like supressing problems and sweeping them under the rug would only give them a higher power than they deserve. They would just build up and morph into a monster that is unruly and untaimable. Being a man is not dealing with things in a macho manner. It is honoring your feelings and dealing with them as they come. It is in allowing your gentleness to show, and to have pride in yourself, God, your religion, your family and your principles, to never waiver or give into societal pressures and expectations. Be passionate about life. About your neighbors and loved ones. Work for peace and love, because they are the basis for every good that can happen on this life and the hereafter. You are perfect because of your imperfections my darling. You are so so loved. I know how good and kind you are and I hope and pray that you use the gift that God gave you to make a difference. To face your obstacles, whether innate or physical with nothing but faith and determination. And never forget, asking for help is not admitting defeat. It is recognizing that you are a human being, who is imperfect, and that in itself is a strength that no one can ever take away from you. We all need help every now and then. Be a helping hand for someone, and God will always be there with you, along the way.

I hope this post finds you well. I hope that you gain some insight into your life through my eyes, and that a deeper understanding and a peace of mind is reached through this, as well as through prayers and self care.

I love you with all my heart.

Friday, July 24, 2015

One Year, Two Months, One Day...

Dearest One,

This is an amazing milestone for us both. I never imagined I would be so blessed as to have a child, let alone be celebrating all of your milestones and achievements.

This has been a rough month for mama, my dear. I have not been feeling well lately. I have always struggled with anxiety and depression, and this month has seen the lowest I have been in a long time, perhaps ever. Unfortunately, it affects everyone I love and am close to, which would include you and baba. The fact that's Tete is visiting is helping out immensely. But on to happier and more important details...

You are the master of Peek-A-Boos. You point at things to either tell us what you think they are, or to ask us what they are. You are a lot more vocal about your wants and needs. You seem a lot more interested in walking, as you are trying to take more steps and are standing on your own for longer periods of time. Who knows? Maybe the next post will see you walking and talking, inshallah :)

You celebrated Eid Al-Fitr (this year it was on July 18th) with tete and I and were so well behaved throughout the prayer, celebrations and the brunch that followed, with baba.

I love you my dear. I wish I felt like I deserved you more. I know we are all meant to have what we have. You are meant to have me for a mother, and I am meant to have you for a son. I just wish I felt like the blessing that you are is an earned one. I wish that I deserved you.  I wish I were better for your sake. I am trying to be better, I promise.

Baba and I love you with all of our hearts and with everything we are and everything we have, no matter what. 

Happy Fourteen Months, my darling darling boy.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

One Year, One Month, Two Days...

Dearest Jude,

This month seems to be the month of pointing and asking what everything is!

You want to be held, still. But you also want your independence. You want to feed yourself. You want to be chased. You want to play on your own. But you are very demanding when you want a cuddle or a caress. You get one for three seconds and then you want to take off again. We don't mind the cuddles, even the short ones.

You graze a lot, so you don't eat a lot at meal times. But you seem to be getting enough food and milk throughout the day non-the-less.

This month had a bit of a surprise in it. Not a good one unfortunately. Alhamdellah always and for everything. Your baba had a small stroke and ended up staying in the hospital for 8 days. We made the best of it and visited him every day. He is good alhamdellah. It affected his upper left side and speech for a bit. But we called the ambulance right away, as soon as we noticed that he was speaking funny, so he was treated fairly quickly. So the effects of the stroke were not long lasting. His arm and hand work like nothing has happened alhamdellah. His speech is getting better by the day alhamdellah. He passed his driving test yesterday so he is good to go to work on Monday, June 29th.

Right now we are at your baba's friend Clarence's cottage at 1869 Waterloo Rd, by Bridgewater. We are here for two days with you grammie, auntie Lynne and cousin Bri. Tete did not feel like coming, with fasting and all. Khalo Mo has work.

You are currently napping on the bed next to me. You are just a beautiful soul mashallah. I hope that I will be deserving of you and that we will always be loving and close with one another. I also pray that Allah's love and guidance always encase you and that the Prophet Muhammad PBUH be your constant guide in life. Do not be like your mom, carrying the ladder horizontally through life. And take things easy as they come and don't sweat the little stuff.

I love you with all my heart, we all do!


Saturday, May 23, 2015

One Year Old!


You are ONE YEAR OLD!!

This is a milestone that your father and I are so thankful to God for reaching. I still remember the day you were born. You came into this world on May 23rd, 2014, at 7:53PM. You were 6 pounds, 9 ounces. You were 21 inches long.

We had a party for you today. We got a chocolate sheet cake with trucks for the guests, and a strawberry shortcake for you. We had Sam and Sara from across the street, Abby, Jenine and Abdallah, TJ and Jason, and Radwan. Inshirah, Samah and Hattan, Kristy, Chantal, Sarah, Arwa and Shumon, Karen, Ghada and Samir, Zahra and Zein, Fatima, Kaliegh, Nancy, Lynne, Rachel, Alana and Fraser were here as well. They spoiled you rotten, mashallah!

I think you had fun. It was a lot of people, that we don't usually have at the house, but you seemed to be taking everything in with a stride. You were crawling around and greeting everyone.

I love you so much, my handsome one year old! You are the greatest gift we could have received.

I will continue to strive to deserve you. Mama is having a hard time now. But I am working on making things easier on myself and on you. Inshallah I will succeed.

Happy birthday to the best boy ever. Mama loves you so very much.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Side Note...


If you learn one thing from me, I hope it would be to not live with debt. It might not seem like a, but it really is. Debt affects how you view yourself, friends, social situations.

I am referring to the monitary debt now.

I would love for you to work hard for what you have. That would be the only way you can put your head on your pillow at night, and actually find peace and comfort. Knowing that you have done everything you could that day and that you worked your hardest, would not only put you to sleep out of tiredness, but also out of peace of mind. Peace of mind is one of those things that everyone is looking for and trying to achieve in their lives. And to me, honest living and being true to God, are the way to achieve it.

Life these days is hard without owning a credit card. This card is essential to BUILD credit. It is not your ticket to buying everything you could ever want. It is your way of eventually owning a home and/or a car. Do not fall for the credit company's traps with the minimum payment options. That is their way of getting you hooked. Once you miss a payment, it is extremely hard to catch up. Please listen to me now before you do what I and your dad and everyone else we know have done. And we all have bad credit to show for it 😠

If you buy something on a credit card, make sure you have the cash to buy said thing, so that the credit card is used to record your purchase for the credit bureau. And then use the cash you have to pay off the amount you just charged on your credit card right away. Please please please, learn from my mistakes.

Now with regards to spiritual debt.

We are all created by God, and given all the blessings that we have in our lives. All that is asked of us in return is to make sure we at least follow the five pillars in our lives. We need to keep the belief that there is no God but the One, and that Muhammad PBUH is his messenger, and that Jesus PBUH, Moses PBUH and all the prophets that came before Muhammad PBUH are messengers from God, delivering the same message.
We need to pray five times a day. We need to pay Zakaat, the yearly payment made to charity. We need to fast Ramadan. And we need to perform Hajj or the Greater Pilgrimage. Now I was not blessed to be able to perform the "mini" pilgrimage, or Umra, with my parents, a few times.
All of those are very simple and easy requirements to keep up with, as long as a habit to perform them is maintained. And it is essential that they are not done, just to be done. Remind yourself, the blessings that you have, your health, your happiness, your path, are all from God. He loves you so much and wants to see you in paradise, eternally happy.

Do not owe yourself anything in this department. Time, once passed, is passed forever. We do not get a second chance when it comes to that. This does not mean to always tread lightly or to be terrified of committing to something or a decision. It just simply means that our time on this earth should be used mindfully. So be mindful of your actions and words. Any action causes a reaction, whether from a friend, a family member, a stranger, or from another living entity as well as the environment we live in. Be mindful of yourself and of your surroundings.

This is heavy, I know. But now is as good a time as any to make sure that you learn important life lessons, at a young age.

I love you.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mama's First Mother's Day

Dearest Jude,

You have made a mama out of me!

I never thought this day would come. I thought that I will never be blessed with this gift. But, God's will is above all.

We went to your grammie's and stayed there for supper. It was fun, as we haven't seen her in a while. You had lots of fun exploring her place and trying to figure Holly the cat out. She scared you a bit but we got over it pretty quickly :)
You and baba got me some yummy chocolates and cards. It was so sweet.

Might as well do a quick update, since you will be ONE YEAR OLD the next time an update is uploaded inshallah. I still can not believe that you will be a year old. I have had the most beautiful son in my life for a year already. It feels like it passed in a blink of an eye, subhanallah.

You are a little under the weather right now. We got a little worried because I felt like your appetite was suffering. You are only stuffed up with a runny nose. I weighed you at Dr. White's office and it came up to 19.5 pounds. P.S. you are healthy alhamdellah, and are getting your appetite back.

You no longer are interested in breastfeeding. You don't even have any interest in it for comfort, like you have been the last little while. So I am officially done breastfeeding you. I would estimate that you stopped at around 11 months. You are more interested in chunky foods than you are in purees. You have 8 teeth after all! I think you are working on some more teeth at the moment.

I still can not believe that you will be a year old inshallah. We have some people scheduled to come over and have a little birthday party for you. Inshallah this year, your birthday lands on a Saturday, that your dad has off. So we are getting you some birthday cake and some decorations. You are my best friend and my companion while baba is working, after all. So I think you earned it, being stuck with me and all.

You really are special mashallah. I love you with all my heart my darling boy.

Thank you for having me as your mama.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Eleven Months...

Dearest Jude,

You are ELEVEN MONTHS OLD!  I can not believe that you came into this world this many months ago. It almost makes me sad how fast those eleven months have gone. Don't get me wrong, I love every minute we spend together, but it just seems to have gone by like a blink of an eye. Please utilize your time wisely, it is very short. We don't get a lot of time, even if it might seem like we do. We all look back and wonder where the time has gone and if we have enough to show for it. Our time on this earth is so short, that we would need to be smart with what we do with ourselves. This does not necessarily mean that you have to spend every minute productively. It simply means that it is best to follow this simple rule, told to me by my dad, your jiddo: When it is time for study or work, work hard and focus on work. When it is time to have fun, have fun, and just focus on that. Give each thing you do your all, and I hope that when you look back at how you spent your time, you will have no regrets.

You had a hard month. We moved from our apartment in Lower Sackville, to your tete and jiddo's house, in Halifax. This move has been difficult, because it feels like it is dragging on forever. We have been gradually moving things over the month of April, which explains this feeling of slow progression. We share the house with your khalo Mohammed and your tete and jiddo when they are in town. We are hoping that this would be our first and last move since you came along. The great thing about this move, is that it works well for everyone. You have your own room, that you can grow into. I always found this house to be too big and lonely, even though it really isn't, but a house should not be empty. It just doesn't seem right. So with all of us being here, this house finally feels, to me at least, like a home.

You are a crawling machine! You can get over ledges and keep on going for a while. You also want to climb on everything, and are trying to stand up by yourself. We have to put baby gates up everywhere, just to make sure you don't get yourself in any trouble. You are helping us unpack by pulling everything out of boxes, which is kind of nice because it keeps us motivated. You are getting picky with food, everything needs to have plain yogurt in it for you to eat it. That is alright though, yogurt is full of protein, so I am happy.

I still can not believe how blessed I am to have you in my life, how blessed we all are. We have our rough days, but just a look or a smile from you seems to make everything better. Not just for me, but for everyone around you. You are so loved, and we feel your immense love for us in return. I hope this love of ours is always growing and never ending.

I love you with all my heart, my darling little man,

your mama

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Ten Months...

My Dearest One,

You are TEN months old! Mashallah, habeebi. You have gotten so big. You have outgrown most of your clothes, for one. Another major development is that you, all of a sudden, decided that you want to start crawling! The walker we got, is still being used quite a bit. But you are enjoying spending time on the carpet, surrounded by toys. You throw the toys around and chase after them. You are getting into everything even more now.

You also have scheduled playdates now. Every Tuesday, we have Auntie Nadra, Malak and Ahmad over. Every Thursday, we have Auntie Karen, TJ and Jason. This coming Wednesday, Alana, Alana's friend Ricki-Lee and her daughter Abby, are coming over for a playdate. We have a running joke, that you and Abby are special friends. You seem to enjoy playing with older kids though. I think you are more grown up than we realize. You certainly act like it sometimes. It is more apparent when Rachel is here. You love playing with her and spending time with her. She spent her March break week with us, and we had a great time. We were home bound because of a major storm. But we tried to have some fun with it. We got dressed in our winter gear and put you in the sled. We attempted to take you out for a walk, but we made it to the end of our parking spot, and had to turn around. We had four feet of snow!

You are getting very saucy, too. When you don't get your way, you shriek. You start screaming bloody murder, or you clench your fists and shake your face and arms. I probably should not be laughing when you do this, but sometimes I can't help it. It is just too cute. You are babbling like crazy. Baba is a constant. Mama is said sometimes. There are other syllables that you say every day, but you seem to come up with them on the spot. And it is funny because you come up with a lot of stuff, when I am sternly speaking to you. You seem to be arguing your case with me.

We are still trying to call Tete and Jiddo everyday. They LOVE you so very much. Also, your khalo still tries to come over every Sunday. He is absolutely enamoured by you. Everyone is. You are getting a big head, I am sure. You can be bad at times. Like I said you are getting into everything. We have to discipline you at times. I think you are learning. You have a suspicious look about you when you are doing something that you know is wrong. You certainly act guilty. It is very precious. I hope you keep your innocence for as long as possible.

The world has some bad, as can be seen on the news every day. But it has lots of good, too. Please be the good that this world needs more of. I am not asking you to be perfect. I am just asking that you try to be as good as you can be. Have God in your heart, and inshallah you will always be guided towards the right path. This advise is not perfected by any one, myself and your baba included. We are all trying to find our way in this life. No one is perfect, so no one is expecting you to be. Parents, however, want the best for their kids, simply because they love them so much. They don't want them to repeat the same mistakes they made, because they don't want them to feel anything negative. It is silly, I know. But it can not be helped, parents just love their kids that much. The saying "Do as I say, not as I do", is kind of applicable here. The advise we give you, is from experience. So, we had to have the mistakes we are telling you not to make.

I love you with all my heart. We all do. May Allah be with you always and forever. You have so much goodness in you, I can tell. I hope and pray that you follow through with it, and not let some people's ugliness, misguide it.

P.S. Those girls, your sisters, are beautiful inside and out and we are all very lucky to have them in our lives, as daughters and sisters. God bless all three of you and always guide you all

I love you with all my heart, my darling. Do not ever forget that. Everything your baba and I do, we do for you.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Nine Months...

Dearest One,

Mashallah, you are NINE months old! Where does the time go??!!
We had a busy month. You are trying to get SIX teeth out all at once. You visited with your great aunt, khalti Lina, my grandparents, your tete and your jiddo (first time meeting face-to-face) and your second cousins.

You are eating three solid meals. You get a bottle at night still. If we are home, you get breastfed. If baba is home with us, you get a bottle in the morning and another in the afternoon. You enjoy cuddling with baba and spending time with him, alhamdellah. You have lost some weight though, as your appetite  seems to have been affected by your teeth coming on. But, you are still growing like a weed, mashallah. Most of your clothes are too small now. Even stuff that are sized for 12 month Olds can be too small on you now, mashallah.
You don't seem interested in crawling at all. The minute your belly is touching the ground, you flip yourself over onto your back with ease mashallah. But, you like walking. All anyone has to do is to grab a hold of your arms and you are putting one foot in front of the other mashallah. While we were visiting the family in New Jersey, we picked up a walker. You weren't sure at first, and it looked like you might not be interested. But it didn't take long for you to get the hang of it and run after us all!

Mashallah, mashallah, mashallah! You are an amazing traveler! The plane rides over to NJ and back, did not seem to bother you. You made friends easily with fellow travelers and flight attendants. The only issue was always keeping you entertained. But, all in all, for a first time travelor at almost nine months old, is an accomplishment. Not to mention that your great grandparents,  my tete and jiddo, are huge fans of yours and love you to bits and pieces. The whole family was very happy to have you visiting with them and were enjoying your antics and words. You are more vocal now and try to copy as many sounds as you can hear. One thing that you have done since day one and is the cutest thing ever, is that you hold your right hand's three middle fingers straught and flick them up and down on things. It is charming and cute. Your jiddo, my baba, thinks it's the most beautiful  thing ever and was the only one to notice it outside of myself and your baba.
I am attaching a picture of our electronic ticket to NJ, as a momento for this month,  since it was your first time traveling on an airplane, the first time you met your jiddo face-to-face, the first time I was alone with you and we were away from baba for an extended period of time, the first time you met your great grandparents. It was a lot of firsts for us both and it was wonderful.  I just wish your baba was there too. Inshallah next time. Also, this month, all three of us prayed together! inshallah we continue to pray together and you keep on top of it for your own sake.

I am sorry for the long post. I love you with all my heart, my darling.  May Allah always keep you healthy,  safe and happy. May you always be guided to the right path, and may you always use Muhammad PBUH to guide your life and actions.

All my love,

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Eight Months...

Dearest One,

You are eight months old, mashallah. I don't have a weight or height for you yet, but mashallah you are getting heavy to carry and your clothes are getting small on you. So alhamdellah, you are thriving.

You are eating three meals, a couple of bottles of formula, and as much boob as I can give you in the mornings and around nap times, every day. Mashallah.

You are very vocal. You are saying a lot of "Bababababaaaaa", "Aaaaaaaaaa", "Mmmmmmm", "Tthhhhhhh", "Ssssssss", "Ghggggggg" and tongue clicking. You laugh your cute little bum off whenever I sing the arabic alphabet to you, not really sure why. You think it's the funniest thing ever.

You do not like being on your belly, at all. You seem more interested in sitting up on your bum, or being helped to your feet. You have the concept of walking figured out, as you know to put one foot in front of the other when you are being helped to your feet, and not jumping up and down like you normally would do. No crawling yet, but that is ok. We know that you will do whatever you want to do at your own pace. You are one determined little guy, and once you have your sight set on something, there is no dissuading you from grabbing it or trying to get it.

To celebrate you turning 8 months old, baba, you and I, had a fish and chips dinner. You seemed more interested in throwing the food around, mind you, but that is ok. You are in your exersaucer now and are whining. I believe that you are looking to get some boob to get a nap.

We love you with everything that we are and everything that we have. Your baba is trying so hard to work as many hours as possible to make sure we are taken care of. He is also trying to spend as much time with you as possible, as he misses you greatly. I am trying to be as good of a mother as I know how.

You are really getting frustrated so I will leave off with this:

Don't worry, Be happy!

الله معك حبيبي

Mama xo