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Former makeup enthusiast and bookworm. Currently adopting a minimalist lifestyle. Contact me at phylliciarobert@gmail.com for inquiries.
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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Phy Says: I Am Mama, I Am Papa..

Hello there lovelies...

This story that I am about to share with you is very personal in nature. I know that some people might view this as airing my dirty laundry to the world. That is of course, not my intention. However, I have always believed in being honest in sharing my life's experiences because I hope that somehow, it would reach someone out there who might need to know that they are not alone. And for me, that's the only thing that truly matters in shaa Allah, Amin.

And so the story goes...

As much as I have missed writing in my blog, I haven't been doing so lately. The reason for that is because I have been experiencing a lot of frustrations at the work place and unfortunately it has spilled into other areas in my life. Let's just say I was (and still am) in a situation where am expected to swim across the sea in record time while having my hands and feet tied.

I must say that I didn't handle my frustrations very well. I'd go to work, go with the motions, get mad and after work instead of going directly back home I'd go to the library to read a book. It started innocently enough. I wanted some 'me' time, a break between being an employee during the day and a mum after that. However, as time passed by I started to read more and more compulsively, starting on another novel right after finishing one.

Eventually, it came to a point where I was reading more that one book (at my worst I was switching between 5 books!) at a time. I was spending more and more time away from home and inadvertently, away from Sophie. At home I'd continue to read, getting irritated when Sophie tries to get my attention the only way a toddler knows how; by throwing tantrums.

My mum started to complain about how I am always coming home late and never spending quality time with Sophie. My elder sister also commented that she notices that I am being less patient with the little one. Sophie herself has started to become prone to tantrums. Feeling pressured, I retreated deeper into my shell. The logical side of me knows that this compulsion to read was a symptom to a deeper problem. And the oh, the guilt towards Sophie was crippling! However, I decided to turn a blind eye to the warning signs and plodded on.

Then 2 days ago, I was at the supermarket in the stationery section when a man and his 2 daughters came along. Long story short, he was pretty indulgent towards his daughters especially the youngest one. She was hugging his thigh making googly eyes and trying to convince him to buy her something she probably doesn't need but really, really wanted.

Suddenly a deep feeling of sadness and disappointment washed over me and tears pricked my eyes. As I turned away from them pretending to inspect the pencil sharpeners I gave myself a mental shake and asked myself,"Why am I feeling this way? It's not like I don't have a dad.." I then realized that that wave of pain I felt was not for me but for Sophie. My precious darling doesn't know what it feels like to be indulged by a father and I don't know if she ever will.

In a moment that can only be described as being hit by lightning, I realized with all my heart to the core of my soul that I am her mama AND her papa. As the sole player in the parent band I have to play both parts. I have to bring on my A game and be what she needs, when she needs me. As a human being I will have bad days (or in this case, bad spells) but I can't afford to indulge in them. Most of all, I can't afford to run away and retreat into a figurative (nor literal) cave. I am all she's got. She NEEDS me.

I felt so ashamed with my behavior the past few weeks and I made a solemn promise to myself that I will be the best parent that I could to Sophie from then on. Alhamdulillah, I have strive to come home as soon as I could after work and set aside all distractions to pay my full attention to her. We did finger painting, tickled each other, sang Old Macdonald till we were bored and recited the countries that we were going to go on vacation together. We have even made up our inside jokes. Alhamdulillah, I am so grateful that Allah SWT has helped me to understand the full extend of my responsibility and to snap out of my pity party.

In shaa Allah, I will do my best to remember that moment of clarity in that stationery isle for the rest of my life. Amin.