Friday 23 May 2014


It seems that despite my efforts to be discreet, some mentions of my health have crept into my writing over the last few months. I write about my life and my experiences and it can be hard to separate how I am feeling physically from that, especially at times like this when it impacts so much on everything I do.

So, just when I thought I had my life all (kind of) planned out and set on a course, Allah (SWT) reminded me that we plan, but he is the best of planners and what he plans is nothing short of amazing. Around the time I released my 2014 Muslimah Inspiration Journal and started filling it’s pages at the start of the year, I found myself pregnant. It was an enormous kick in the backside reminder that Allah (SWT) sets out a course for us that we can’t foresee, but that there is always khair (goodness) in what He decides for us.

I have to say I freaked a little and didn't sleep for about two nights – terrified of the long days and nights of sickness and discomfort I suffer during pregnancy, terrified of the pain of delivering a baby again, terrified of what people would say – “five kids?!!”

But I knew better than to let this take hold too deeply. After all, I know that Allah (SWT) loves us and blesses us with what we can handle. Also, I believe that a gift and blessing should not be taken lightly, but recognised and appreciated for what it is. In the case of a child; a source of deep joy, an opportunity to create our legacy, the awe of watching a human being come into their amazing potential as unique individuals and Muslims and a chance to raise our standing in the next world insh’Allah.

I am just over six months pregnant now (26 weeks, so a few days short of the start of my third trimester). I'm not sure where the first two trimesters went. Most of the time has been spent being utterly sick and lying down quite a bit. The last two months have been without sickness and I have been trying to catch up with getting some routine back in my life and acting as if I can carry on as normal – including walking a lot and trying to eat sensibly so I don’t get too big . The last two weeks have seen me come to a realisation that I am pregnant and that means I have to slow down, be gentle on myself, ask for help and sometimes just say to my family that I just can’t do anything right now and will have to lie down and that they will have to make do with whatever is lurking in the recesses of the fridge for dinner.

I have to admit telling people was challenging, but not always as I expected. I waited till almost six months to tell my mum because she has always been adamant two children are enough (she told me to stop after two, then after three, then for definite after four). I was fully expecting a slap, but got a disappointed “but you had such a nice family”. I told her it was just about to get nicer and she harrumphed. Kooks was watching and piped up with “I was the fifth and look I'm the best one” which was met with “you came uninvited”. Good job we both have a thick skin. It might sound horrible on my mum’s part, but I know how much she found it very hard to raise the five of us on limited resources with no help and in isolated circumstances. I know she wants the best for us and thinks that would include an easier life. I also know that she will love this baby in the way she loves all of her grandchildren (mostly by stuffing them full of sweets when I am not looking).

I told my manager at work fairly on, but didn't start to tell people until after five months when I had my second scan confirming things were okay. Prior to that I had been feeling no movement from the baby and started to get scared. People’s reaction has varied from congratulations and encouragement to "OMG five kids!!".  Thankfully more of the former and less of the latter.

Little Lady clocked something was going no fairly early and asked me why I wasn't missing nay prayers and if it was because I was pregnant. I told her to stop being nosy and it was different when you were older and have had kids, you don’t always miss prayers. When I finally owned up, she wasn't very impressed with my dissembling. She is very happy though and has been great at trying to help me. The boys don’t seem to have quite caught on, Gorgeous just thinks I am getting fat and isn't very happy about it. He keeps telling me pointedly that he would never want to get fat. I did ask him what he would do if we went and got another baby, he was adamant that we’d never be allowed more than four. I asked him how he would like another little sister, this set him off ranting about it not being fair if there were more girls than boys. He still hasn't quite recovered from Darling encroaching on his limelight, so who knows what another baby might do to him. One of my sisters suggested I take a picture of his face when he finds out – will definitely be doing so.

Other than this I am trying to get my head around managing a very full home alhamdulillah and a big workload. Three at school, including one who will be starting high school and two children under two. Although to be honest, I would count Gorgeous as more than one child – he’s loud enough and creates enough chaos and work for it.

I am grateful for my wonderful husband who helps me so much, has listened to my moaning and been patient through the incapacitating months of sickness. I am grateful for my lovely sisters and sister-in-law who have been nothing but supportive. In particular Shutterbug Sister who on my telling her I was pregnant, without a pause reminded me that it was a blessing from Allah and could not be without purpose. Just the words I needed at that time and they have sustained me in the days that followed massively.

I am grateful for my health and energy, for the fact that I have stopped being sick and for the prayers sent my way. It’s a time of transition in our family, of things changing and moving forward. We are at a point of uncertainty before the big things start happening: the arrival of this baby, Little Lady’s school, Kook’s wedding and who knows what else. It will be hard work, physically, emotionally and spiritually. I'm not scared of that because I am constantly reminded of Allah’s (SWT) promise that he does not burden a soul with more than it can bear. My plans for the coming years will have to be reassessed in light of having less time and the need to focus on caring for the people around me. I am breathless, can’t manage stairs, cannot pray without getting painful heartburn and have swollen ankles and porky fingers (I am trying very hard to find the funny side of that). Plus I am still terrified of the pain that is coming my way in about three months…

Yet I am so excited. I have watched each of my children grow and their own nature, character and strengths emerge, gifts from Allah (SWT) to be used in this world to fulfil their purpose. I am watching Darling come into her own – introverted, affectionate, strong-willed, bossy and bright as a button. Now insh’Allah I have the chance to watch this unfolding and realising of those gifts once more. I feel very, very privileged.


  1. Congratulations sister..with each hardship it gets easier without realising it..
    Children are a blessing...wish you all the best inshallah :)

  2. Anonymous23 May, 2014

    Congratulations sister! I too have 5 kids and my fifth little one was also a surprise but Alhamdulillah the joy and love she has brought into our home is amazing. It's normal to be anxious but inshallah everything will work out.

  3. Anonymous23 May, 2014

    I think your brilliant. Take it easy and enjoy this time.
    Be positive, breathe, do zikr and Insha'Allah you will get through the daunting aspect. You have a lot of support which is huge blessing and bonus. Will remember you in my dua's.

  4. Congratulations Sis. May Allah bless you with all the strength you need. You are a great woman and a wonderful mother. Things will fall at your ease insha allah.

  5. Anonymous24 May, 2014

    As I can see you through this blog, you are seriously a role model for me.Good muslim, great mom and wife..wish I can make just the half.
    Do you know that when nursing your baby, every drop of milk she eats gives u the reward as u would freed 70 slaves? And there is a hadeeth also about women who foesnt sleep at night to nurse and care about thwir babies get lot of hasana inchallah.So more babies, more blessings, more hasana, incha Allah u will be in the Paradise.
    Allah bless u sister and your little one too

  6. Anonymous24 May, 2014

    Congratulations ma shaa' Allah :)

  7. Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullah Wa Barakatu Umm Salihah,

    Masha'Allah Barkalafik. Mabruk and Congratulations. Allah is blessing you with one of the greatest blessings of this world. It is no cliche that many would give up so much just to be able to have their own baby. May Allah bless all of your children to be full of blessings for you and your family and may He bless them to grow up as good Muslims. May He bless you all to be together in Firdaus with no accounts at all.
    Your Sister in Islam,
    Grandma Jeddah

  8. Anonymous26 May, 2014

    MashaAllah! Good news! I am so happy for you! So exciting! My regret is not having more than 2! But alhamdulilah for the children Allah blessed us with!/ S Susan

  9. Dear Happy Muslim Mama, Many many congratulations! Ive been reading your blog for some four years now, and started initially to familiarise myself with the everyday lives of ordinary Muslim women. I was then interested in Islam, and now, having converted some 3 years ago coinciding with my marriage, your blog has continued to be a source of great inspiration and learning. I come from a Hindu family in India, and my own interaction with practicing Muslim women was limited. From your blog I learned that religious practice and 'modernity' went hand, that you could continue being the best you possible and that character and personality are only enhanced by religion, not restricted by it. I learned that prioritising religion in life didnt take away from having a wonderful life-fun,laughter,friendships,pretty clothes and clothes,sister bonding,theme parties and craft,reading,cooking,visiting new places-all these were made better with religion as the guiding force.The reason Im writing this 'ode' to you is only because of the wonderful news you've shared-Im convinced that Allah must be mighty pleased with you and has chosen you to raise the kind of Muslim kids this world desperately needs-the kind that provide inspiration and positivity to the people around them, just as you did for me :-) Much love.

  10. My fifth baby was also "uninvited" (that's a fun was to put it!). We call him the happy little accident, after an old painting show. He is now 2, and apart from not sleeping well, he really is a joy! And since my other boys are older, they are great helps. And to quote my mother: "after 3, it's all the same."

    Do you think what the sister above commented above about breast milk applies to Christian ladies? Because I think I'm up to about ten years of breastfeeding right now, give or take a couple of months? (Not trying to be irreverent, just wondering.)

  11. Mubarak, I thought the baby shower was for your sister hehe. May Allah (swt) make it easy for you.

  12. Anonymous29 May, 2014

    masha allah and mabrook, I m really, really glad for you sister....I donno know why i should be...i never talked to u nor have i communicated with u all the while, when i d been reading ur blog so religiously. but i ve been very impressed and u ve been a great motivator in my life too...jazaakallahu khairan... Allah blessed u with another child because u could do it, as you said.May Allah SWT make things easy for you(pregnancy & after). i could not not just keep quiet and go on after hearing this news...and hence this comment

  13. Anonymous30 May, 2014

    Mashala sister. Ur allah only gives us what we can cope with. Ive just had twins and was so scared about how I would manage but honestly the difficulty level feels just the same as my first child. Meaning I am coping - even finding time to read blogs Alhumdorillah. Im sure you will be fine inshallah