The other day we went to visit a friend of Super S's. The drive was like an hour and a half outside Cairo. It was a beautiful drive to a place called Ismailia, a very cute little city . Its famous for its locally grown mangoes and strawberries too. (Its mango season here now...100's of different kinds to choose from)
In Ismailia there are lots of 19th century colonial styled houses and beautiful tree lined streets. The corniche along the water is decorated with outdoor gazebos, just a great place to spend a day or two... we'll be visiting again. It has a smaller town charm to it, although there is estimated to be 750,000 plus living there. But i guess when compared to Cairo at approx. 18 million, yeah its a small town.
What i want to share you with you is the conversation with the friend's wife.
Nice girl, mid-twenties, very cute, from the country side, rural area outside of Cairo. She's been married two years, has a two year old and 2 month old. Cutest little kids by the way.
With her brief command of English and my ever so broken Arabic we spoke for hours. In addition to the "how is America, how do you like living in Egypt" questions, the MAIN and ALWAYS asked questions "How long have you been married? How many kids do you have?" ruled most of our conversation.
"Yes its true I've been married 13 years and yes we do not have kids yet..."
"Yes we have seen doctors and we have tried many treatments..."
"And yes I agree it is all up to God...." Along with many other comments in the 4 plus hours we talked.
"You can take the 2 year old with you, take him.... You can take the baby too. I am so tired, i don't know what to do. "
"The 2 year old does not listen, he is so active"
"I don't sleep." "My husband doesn't help me." "We don't get out enough.." (Again, along with many other comments in the 4 plus hours we talked)
Man! I was tired listening to her.
I tried to comfort and encourage her. But you know the sad thing is I always hear these same sad statements.
Is this a cultural thing? I mean do only Egyptian ladies have these complaints, of course not. I know Egyptians, Americans and a whole bunch of ladies from other countries that have never had any of these complaints, and Mothers who are not from here with these very complaints.
While some mothers do have these types of complaints, it hurts me to hear them, not only because I long for my own children. Don't get me wrong, I don't feel these mothers are unappreciative, no not at all. They are just struggling trying to find their groove with parenthood I guess.
I sometimes wonder if I were a mother, and I was not consumed did not struggle with infertility, would I say these same things? The answer is a definite no. For so many reasons..... I know that my husband would always be involved. I know I would try my best to raise them in such a way that they would listen and behave and I would try to understand their energy and stimulate their minds. And really I would appreciate the fact that I have children and would thank God everday for the blessing.
Now i imagine being a Mother is not always easy, i mean come on even those of us who are not mothers know this. Remember when we were kids? Our mothers, how we drove them cRaZy? Well some of us maybe...
Do i know that kids are kids and not perfect in everyway? Do i know that it would be trying at times? Do i know i would feel a rollercoaster of things positive and perhaps even negative sometimes? Do i know that my time, money and circumstances would change? Do i know my life as I know it would never be the same again?
Yes I am aware of all of these things.
Still I long for the day man... I will take all the things that come along with being a parent, good and bad challenging.
My hat is off to all you Mothers, your job is not an easy one, but it is one I want and I admire you so much for giving it your best shot always. I hope to join you one day...