And time passed by as it inevitably will and what remains is the truest of all idioms: the little things in life. Specifically three littles. The meaning of my life since marriage has tripled in the form of three precious children. As any good parent will tell you, we are blessed and grateful and behind on a few several hundred hours of sleep.
I made the decision to revisit the world of blogging at the indirect request of my oldest daughter who just turned 5. She has been by my side as I learned from her how to be a mother to her, my middle son (3 years old), and my youngest daughter (1 year old at the end of this month). In my 5 years since joining the beautiful circle of motherhood, there have been a lot of messes, trials, errors, tribulations, laughter, joy, acts of kindness, and affirmation of humanity in our home. The former after my son joined us and we became a “2 under 2” family after just moving to New York and the latter mixed in “through night and day and in and out of weeks and almost over a year” to quote Where the Wild Things Are (a constant favorite in our household). If you are a parent to multiples, I know you know what I mean. There is so much love in a child’s boundless energy and yet so much maintenance required. As I am sure you can relate, I have learned a lot. A lot about babies, childcare, fussy baby hacks, toddler tantrums, encouraging siblings to play together, and navigating playdates…I’ve had to learn this during big cross-country moves which came with challenges that I would be happy to talk about to anyone interested. And when I thought I had at least some of #momlife figured out, the pandemic came to New York in Spring 2020 after just giving birth to our youngest and I realized that another idiom rang true–I had my work cut out for me. I felt I was a new mom all over again with all the fears and worries and feelings of no self-worth except this time we were all stuck inside and I had these 3 children all under the age of 5 who needed guidance, reassurance, normality. Oh and I am sure you didn’t forget–the looming threat of COVID trying to come through the door.
So I needed to come up with all the Pinterest kid activities possible that wouldn’t destroy our 600 square foot common area without losing my mind. I am not going to tell you I did this perfectly–I did not. There were great arts and craft days and then there were days where my kids just looked like unfinished arts and crafts. That was okay. They were safe, healthy, loved and I still had my mind (mostly) intact.
Instead, I found myself realizing what I had been working towards, perhaps unknowingly, for the past 8 years of marriage and motherhood–a love for cooking and baking and the love it creates within a home. And it took my 5 year old to open my eyes to the collective joy that is waiting to be shared. Specifically from the POV of an Arab American household.