Career Woman’s Dilemma
Disclaimer : The post below is my personal experience only.
Rather a long and personal post, but i thought I’d share
Another evening, another dinner with friends… and another bout of answering questions about why I don’t go back to ‘work’ post baby.
“He’s old enough now, he’s 2 and a half; you have great offers; he is going to nursery anyways and you have help at home… you can manage fine, why throw away a great career.’’
An Alhamdulillah – all of these are true.
After a long break, I still have great opportunities to continue my career – as it was pre-baby – on my table. But I am reluctant to take them on.
I struggle to explain it to people when they ask and I am plagued with constant self-doubt. But here’s why I am at home ‘wasting’ my career and education
The world today is murky and getting murkier. Children have to face such complex issues at such a young age and filter through so many conflicting inputs at the same time. Bombarded by media from a very young age with you tube and television.
As they grow into young adults, there is noting fixed and constant…. A world where deceit and lies are considered part and parcel of regular interactions, where it’s a norm to conceal your income to evade taxes. Where there is a strong media generated ‘norm’ that people conform to without even realizing it. Where being ‘cool’ and being a part of the ‘in-crowd’ has so many strings attached.
A world where dating and pre-marital sex is the norm by and large; where ‘losing your virginity’ in college or before is a right of passage. Where you now even have to choose your sexual orientation.
How do I prepare my child to navigate through these trials, without shying away, and being apologetic? I don’t care if he is a leader, or he achieves fame and wealth in this world.
All I want to ensure that he has a rock solid strong internal compass and lodestone to navigate through all the muck. That he have the strength and confidence to have an opinion and stick by it – Through thick and thin. That he have a deep intimate relationship with Allah – a light within his heart that guides him through the choppy dark waters that he has to tread. That he has the wisdom to distinguish right from wrong, and the strength to stick to the right.
I strongly believe that it is within these formative young years – when my voice and influence is the loudest. When my voice doesn’t have to compete with zillions of others to be heard in his head… while I am still the center of world, and he thinks I am superwoman who can do anything…NOW is the time that I can instill some deep rooted concepts in him. Plant the little voice in his head…. Define his instinctive responses.
I want to be awake and alert for all is bedtimes so I can say the ayatul kursi and sing him to sleep with La Ilaha IlAllah…. So La ilahaIlAllah becomes his default ‘comfort’ song. So one day as he drifts off into eternal sleep, the words he hears in his head are my voice saying La Ilaha Il Allah.
I want it to be second nature to him to wake up with an Alhamdulillah on his lips. I want to be there every time he wakes – so I can say it for him every morning till he takes over saying it for both of us.
I want to repeat to him throughout the day – Allah loves you more than mamma does… so that he remembers it in a deep place in his heart – A place that I may not have access to when he is older. I want to kiss away every cut and scrape that he gets while telling him ‘Allah will make it better’.
Can I do that if I am working – maybe – but knowing myself and how I ‘work’ I am not so sure I can balance it. I get emotionally and mentally involved in my projects – they take up a large chunk of my heart. I will probably go to bed solving work issues in my head – and in that mental fatigue there is a chance that I will just hand him an ipad. There will be times when I will have to rush off to work early, before he wakes up – then what becomes of his morning duaa?
Maybe I will be able to balance it – and I know women who do balance it beautifully. But I am not sure I will be able to do it. I don’t want to risk it. There is too much at stake. I don’t want to face the downside of compromising even in a small part this critical process of trying to create a strong internal compass.
May Allah help all of us, whatever our circumstance, whatever our choices. May he bless our children with strength and Emaan.