Dear Zara : Letters to My Daughter

Dear Zara

Today we had a full day of fun together. We went to a coffee shop for breakfast. You had raisin toast which is your favorite right now. We walked to the library for story time. I held your hand and you walked. You wanted to walk by yourself. We went to dollar store and you picked a ball to buy. We went to the park where you splashed in puddles and learned to throw the ball. You loved going on the swings and tried to climb the biggest slide in the park. I am exhausted! It was awesome! You are growing up too fast! This week you learned to say Apple, Ball, Bath, Sit, Wet and Elmo.

I love the days we spend together. It is as if time slows down. I wish I could do this everyday with you.

But I work. I work part time so I can be with you for these moments. And I still feel like I am missing out. I hope when you get older you understand why I work. I work so I can provide you the best life. I work because I want to be a role model for you. I work because I need to still be me which makes me a better mom to you.  I work so I can afford to give you the life you deserve to have. I work so you don’t miss out on anything.  I work for you.

I want you to know that it isn’t easy for me to be away from you. The best part of my day is coming home to you. I love how excited you are to see me when I come home. But it also hurts because I know you miss me.

I hope you will read this one day and remember the awesome mommy-daughter days we had. It is easy sometimes to forget days like this. But I wanted to write to you so we don’t. This was more than just a Friday to me because I was able to spend it with you. You make every day special.

Love you forever Zara bear.

Your Mama

M is for Mom and Medium

How many times have you looked in your closet at your pre baby clothes and cried a little? Or you pull out your pre baby ‘fat jeans’ and think, oh these should fit! And they don’t fit. 

Working out and eating healthy was a forced discipline for me. I was always a size S or XS. Getting into a size zero gave me sense of pride. The size of the clothes I wore defined me. 

Pre baby I worked out 4 or 5 times a week. I could do a 100 burpees in one go. I fit ‘better’ into my size zero clothes .  I ate a high protein no carb diet. No sugar or dairy. This was not easy. Not only did it require a lot of prep work but also a LOT of discipline. 

Fast forward to present time! I gained a lot of weight while I was pregnant ( 42 pounds to be exact!)  I am petite so that is a lot for my frame. I was put on bed rest for the last trimester and that played a major part in my weight gain. I did not lose weight when I breast fed. In fact, I gained more weight! Long story short, every time I opened my closet I cried. Nothing fit. I hated the way I looked. I started to work out everyday and eat better but there was barely any gains. It was disappointing and depressing. 

I thought about the pre baby me. Yes I looked great. I had energy. But was I happy? Nope. I love eating. And giving up my favorite foods took a lot out of me. On the outside, I fit in to my size zero but on the inside I was deprived. 

I am not saying working out and eating healthy is depressing. And yes everyone should excersize and eat healthy. But for the right reasons. My reason was to continue to be a size zero/s. That was not a good enough reason. 

I am now a size M. I still have about 20 pounds to get to my pre baby weight. I don’t workout. I should ( another thing to feel guilty about). I do however eat better. But I eat carbs. Good carbs mainly. I still look inside my closet and cry. But not as much. I bought some new clothes that actually fit me. I still cringe when I try on a size M. But I am trying not to let the size of the clothes I wear define me. For now I am a size M on the outside. But on the inside I don’t feel deprived. And I am learning it’s how you feel on the inside that matters the most. 

How are you coping with your new body? Have you embraced it or are you longing to go back to your pre baby body?

The Working Mom

This week I started my new adventure. I am now a working mom! I am fortunate enough to work part time in a flexible organization that values and trusts its employees. It feels great to get my brain into working mode. Most of the day I barely think about Zara. And when I do, I feel guilty. 

I tell myself that it is OK to be Husna and Zara’s mom.  Being Husna makes me a better mom. 

Growing up I always felt that you have to be one or the other. You have to make a choice. Be me or be a mother. 

My mother gave up her life and her aspirations to be a mom to us. I watched my mother struggle because she felt stuck being a stay at home mom. And now that I am a mom I feel being a mom and being me is not possible. 

In reality, being a mother doesn’t mean sacrificing who I am. I shouldn’t feel guilty for being me. I am more than Zara’s mom. And that is OK. 

The next chapter

Today is the last day of being a stay at home mom for me. On Monday I start a new job. It is exciting and daunting at the same time. It is the beginning of a new chapter.

I am going to have to learn to balance work, home, baby Zara, husband and life! It will be different and I am sure difficult. But I am looking forward to talking to adults! I help people reach their career goals and their is a sense of satisfaction and pride in that I am looking forward to.

As I sit here drinking my mocha, I am reflecting back on the last year and a half. Zara pushed me to start things I was scared of starting (this blog is one of them). She pushed me to ask more of my life. She pushed me to reach higher. She changed me- inside and outside. Honestly, this little baby is the best thing that has ever happened to me. When she was born I felt I was giving up my life for her. But in reality, I started living for the first time.

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