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Do you appreciate your parents, the way they deserve to be appreciated?

Appreciate

Do you appreciate your parents, the way they deserve to be appreciated? Are there days that go by where you don’t speak to your parents (in person, on the phone, via WhatsApp or even via email)? Are there times where you share exciting/important news with others first, before your parents? Are there times when you pop in to visit them, but then cut the visit short because you had other plans with other people? I know I am guilty of this, and if you are too, then this post is for you.

Appreciate your parents
My parents do not wish to be featured on the internet, so I have blurred the image

When Ammaarah was born, I discovered a new level of appreciation for my parents. I was taken aback at the level of (eternal) commitment required for raising a baby, it hit me like a brick in the face. But what hit me harder was the fact that my parents did the same for me, for so many years, and that I easily took that for granted. It was only after Ammaarah was born, that I truly learnt the meaning of ‘I could never repay you for what you have done (and continue to do) for me throughout my life’.

Appreciate your parents

Then Aqeelah was born and, as I had hoped, I instantly fell in love with her. I was granted the ‘love at first sight’ moment that I had made so much dua for. But strangely enough, and very unexpectedly, I also fell more deeply in love with Ammaarah. Right in front of my eyes, instantly and immediately, Ammaarah became a new person. She was no longer my little baby, but rather a toddler, she grew up in a matter of seconds. And it was only then that I truly learnt the meaning of ‘time passes by so quickly’.

When Aqeelah was born

Just a few weeks after Aqeelah was born, I began to experience the overwhelming feeling of ‘I don’t know what I would do without my children’. And this feeling grows stronger as each day that I am granted passes me by. (May we all be granted another day IA!) Often, I find myself going into a flat panic at the thought of something happening to them, after which I have to take a moment and tell myself to just relax because I cannot control everything (even though I wish with all my heart that I could!). I wish to be around them constantly, I wish to know about their every moment and I wish to experience there every adventure together with them.

This is however not possible. I do not possess the ability to provide them with everything they need to go through life on this earth and there will be a time where I will have to let go and allow them to live their own lives. And I accept that, I promise I do.

However, having said that, I can only wish that they would always be a part of my daily life. I wish that I would at least have the opportunity to communicate with them every day. I wish that they would at least feel comfortable enough to share exciting news with me first, before sharing with friends (as I am often guilty of). I wish that they would set aside enough time to spend with me, on a regular basis (however often regular may be for us). I wish, I wish, I wish, the list goes on and on (there is so much that I make dua for – may all our dua’s be accepted IA), but most importantly, I wish to feel included, to feel important to them, and to feel loved.

And then just the other day, I was hit by an epiphany and it has been bothering me immensely – I do not appreciate my parents the way they deserve to be treated.

My feelings were turned around, and I wondered how my parents felt. Was I present enough in their lives? Do my actions make them feel included, important or loved? Because I certainly am guilty of those questions that I posed above, and that surely cannot make them feel included, important or loved! There are days that go by where I don’t speak to them. I mean life is just so busy right? I wake up early to go to work and then work consumes my day and then when I return home it is straight into kids, supper, husband, blogging, treatmesweetlie, and even some tv. But is that a good enough excuse for not sparing 5 minutes to pick up the phone and say ‘Hello, how are you, and have a good night’? How is it possible, out of a full day, that I sometimes do not make the time to call them? My heart is absolutely shattered by this thought. Everything that I wish for from my children, I am not reciprocating to my own parents. (What type of example am I to my children?)

For me, personally, this is not the way my parents should be treated. They deserve better and they most certainly deserve more of my time. For if it weren’t for them, where would I have been today? Regardless of how far I am from them, regardless of whether they are on a different continent, regardless of whether I had a 14 hour work day, regardless of everything and anything, I must at least make the time to speak to them, every day.

Alhamd, I am blessed to still have both my parents with me on this earth, and I am utterly grateful that these thoughts have crossed my mind now. I am grateful that I have been granted the opportunity to make a change now, before it is too late. And if you are guilty of some of the things I have just mentioned, then I urge you to please consider changing your actions now, before it is too late. Because regardless of whatever may have happened or is happening in your life, we have only been granted one set of parents and we wouldn’t be where we are today without them. So if by the time you read this part of this post, please stop and pick up the phone and call your parents (if you haven’t done so already).

May we all be granted this opportunity IA. May we all take the time to appreciate our parents, the way they deserve to be treated, IA!

Thanks for reading and feel free to share your thoughts with me.

xxx

Radhia

(Please note that I, by no means, wish to exclude any type of parent from this post – whether it be adoptive parents or single parents. My post refers to both my parents, as I have been lucky enough to have been granted both to be a part of my life.)

 

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What if I love Porschie #2 more?

What if I love Porsche #2 more?

It seems to be normal, that when baby number 2 is on his or her way, that a mother would fear that she would not be able to love baby number 2 as much as baby number 1. Sound familiar? Well for me, it is somewhat different, because my fear is completely  the opposite! What if I love Porschie #2 more?

You see, I had a really rough start to motherhood. The delivery did not go as planned, there were epidural complications causing 2 weeks of intense recovery (read more about my birth story here), I struggled with breastfeeding for at least 8 weeks, Ammaarah had gas and wouldn’t stop crying, I most certainly suffered from post natal depression, and and and… In hind site, I absolutely know that I truly was my own worst enemy and it was mainly self inflicted, but regardless, I experienced those things. And those things unfortunately caused me to not love my baby from the moment I saw her – you know, that ‘love at first sight’ emotion you are supposed to feel when you finally meet your little one? Well not for me. I think I only fell in love with her after a few months. I mean, of course I loved her, my maternal instincts would not allow anything else, but I did not feel that unexplainable feeling of warm custard flowing through every part of your body – that feeling of love – until months later!

Hence my fear…what if I love Porschie #2 more, as early as from the start? What if I am granted that blessing of ‘love at first sight’ with Porschie #2? What if I feel that unexplainable feeling of warm custard from the get go?

I have no doubt that I will love my children equally – as best as I know how. I have no doubt that I will do my utmost best for them, always. I have no doubt that I will treat them as individuals, but all equal in terms of being my children. But again, what if I fall in love with Porschie #2 earlier? Wouldn’t that already mean that I was treating my children differently? (My heart just cannot deal with the guilt!)

Almost 19 weeks now (alhamdulillah), and I can finally start to feel Porschie #2 in my belly. Those early feelings of flutters in your belly (when you are not quite sure if it is a fart or not), and then that confirming feeling of little pops in your belly. Especially when you sit quietly and concentrate on the absolute blessing growing in your belly! I can finally feel Porschie #2 and I have already fallen in love…but that guilt has unfortunately begun!

Am I crazy, to feel this way? Or is this perhaps normal? I have no idea, but one thing I know for sure, is that each pregnancy is most certainly different and that has been proven to me already! I can only but pray that I am granted with another successful 21 weeks of pregnancy and be granted with the greatest blessing of a baby number 2 (and a healthy baby) IA!

 

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Plans – what does that even mean? 

Treatmesweetlie

Right about now, I am laying in bed, in a very awkward position, with my little girl crawled up in the curve of the back of my neck. This is how she decided to fall asleep this evening.

 And I already know what you are thinking…what happened to sleep training where she is meant to fall asleep by herself? Mommy guilt happened, that’s what!

It’s been a rough couple of months. Work has been extremely challenging and demanding, which has resulted in working late on many nights and coming home after Ammaarah has already fallen asleep. So when I am home during bedtime, I take advantage of laying with her while she falls asleep. I’m trying my very best to make up for lost time. 

Now what has that done to our routine? Well, I actually don’t care. 

Routine has always been a very important part of my life. I’m the type of person that likes structure and a plan and then most of all actually following that plan. And when things don’t go according to plan, I normally have a mild freak out session! This is one of the biggest lessons I have learnt since becoming a mother – nothing goes according to plans anymore. It was really difficult for me to comprehend at first, but I think I’ve gotten used to it. 

Unfortunately the passed couple of months has proven that other plans are better than mine. And you know what, that’s okay. Our routine has been kicked to the curb and overtime we will build a new routine. 

Together with so many other things, I’ve been neglecting my blog for the longest time now, only because spare time has really been limited lately. Every free moment I have had has been spent with my family. I’ve had to reprioritise everything I do outside of work, and unfortunately my blog came up as last on the list. I suppose that is what life is about, making the most of every moment, always ensuring that you spend your time on the things that matter the most to you. 

And that is what I love most about my blog…there are no obligations. My blog is meant to depict the happenings of my life, and it truly has, because lately, there has just not been enough time for everything and nothing has gone according to my plan. 

Motherhood has truly taught me to have the utmost faith in the Almighty, because plans from above are superior to any plans I may have! 

Here’s to taking living life one moment at a time, living everyday to the best that I know how…

xxx

Radhia 

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WIN with Kids Emporium and Shooshoos (closed)

Win with kids emporium and shooshoos

(Bear with me, I am going to do a little bit of a blog post first before we get into the nitty-gritty of how you can win!)

Win with kids emporium and shooshoos

Not too long ago I spent an inspiring and motivational morning with a room full of amazingly talented women at the Kids Emporium first ever bloggers breakfast. Each and every women in the room had an inspiring and successful story to share, and the most important lesson I learnt from that, was that being you was a success on its own.

Win with Kids Emporium

Lauren De Swardt, the founder and owner of Kids Emporium, shared her success story with us. It was absolutely inspiring and came at a time when I needed it the most. My most recent posts have been themed around how difficult the past several weeks have been for me, where work commitments literally sucked up all of my time like a dry sponge reaching a puddle of water and how being a working mother sucks sometimes. Lauren’s story motivated me to push through the challenging time I found myself in and to remain true to myself and my passion.

Lauren de Swardt and Radhia Sattar

Now I don’t want to bore you with a word for word paraphrase of her story, as there are many articles and interviews you could find on the internet, but I do wish to share two bits of her story that resonated most with me. (I promise to be brief, as I know you are dying to know how you can win with Kids Emporium and Shooshoos!)

“Work from home”

Did you know that the Kids Emporium Head Office is run from a loft studio in Lauren’s home?! She explained that her work life balance was an important part of her life and working from home assisted her in achieving this. She even has a recurring meeting booked in her diary, every day at 3pm, for homework time with her kids.

Now that is a dream come true for any working mother – to be able work in an environment that is conducive to being a mother. For many of us, our careers would not allow for us to work from home. And that is okay. As long as we work in an environment where everyone understands the needs of a mother/parent. I may not be able to give up my day job, but I strive to build a relationship with my employer where the needs of a mother can be understood without the sacrifice of any work commitments.

“The sale of my first store was one of my biggest challenges”

She described the sale of her first Franchise store as one of her biggest challenges. It took months of hard work, perseverance and lots of convincing, only to feel as though she should give up at least 100 times because the potential buyer was just not budging. But the sale eventually happened, and now, over 10 years later with more than 20 stores and an online store, she explained how easily a Kids Emporium Franchise store could be sold within a few minutes. Kids Emporium has also recently announced that they will be opening up their doors in the UK soon!

Success clearly does not come easily! This is something I need to remind myself of daily. It takes hard work, determination and perseverance to succeed in anything you put your mind to, and it takes time to build your brand. I may not be the best mother to Ammaarah, or the best wife to Zieyaad, or the best female accountant, or the best mommy blogger, or the best mompreneur, or the best daughter, sister, friend or or or or or the one hundred things we find ourselves doing or wanting to be! But I know that I am best at being me (for myself and my creator).

This is me. This is the life that has been granted to me by the Almighty. And no matter what comes my way, I need to keep reminding myself that as long as I have tried my best, I have succeeded.

How you can win with Kids Emporium and Shooshoos

One of the perks of attending this event was the customised Treatmesweetlie specific goodie bag I received. Not only did I receive something for Ammaarah but I also received something that I am able to share with you!

I have been struggling to find shoes for Ammaarah for these awkward-weather autumn days. You know, those days where it is too cold to wear sandals yet too hot to wear boots? Now the fairies who organised this bloggers breakfast must have done their homework, because this gift came at the perfect time – a pink and silver pair of mini moccs from Shooshoos (it’s called the ‘Icing Sugar’)! There is just enough coverage for the warmer days and just enough room to wear with stockings in the colder days. I cannot wait to style them on PP. And if you think these are adorable, you have to visit the Shooshoos online shop, their range is impressively extensive!

Win with Shoosoos

What I love about Shooshoos is that they are proudly South African, competitive in their prices, easily accessible and offer a wide range of cute and trendy leather shoes. Their online size guide makes online shopping that much easier!

And now for the fun part – I get to share some Shooshoos with you too! Kids Emporium and Shooshoos have given you the chance to win a R200 Shooshoos voucher to purchase a pair of shoes from the Shooshoos online shop, and the best part is that delivery in South Africa is free!

All you need to do is follow the 4 simple steps below and you will be entered into the lucky draw to win:

  1. Subscribe to my blog (see on the right side of my web page – remember, this is a two-step process, you have to confirm your subscription via the confirmation link that is sent to your email)
  2. Like/follow Treatmesweetlie on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter
  3. Share the link to this article on either Facebook or Twitter by clicking share buttons below
  4. Lastly, be sure to come back to this blog post and comment with the word ‘done’ to confirm your entry to win with Kids Emporium and Shooshoos.

Terms and conditions

  • The prize will be awarded to the first correct entry drawn at random. Failure to follow all the steps will result in disqualification.
  • The winner will be selected at random by me, and will be final. No correspondence will be entered into.
  • Failure to claim the prize within 10 working days after the announcement will result in forfeiture of the prize and the next correct entry drawn will obtain the prize.
  • This competition is open to South Africans only.
  • This competition closes at midnight on Friday, 13 May 2016.

xxx

Radhia

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Lesson learnt from my 17 month old: forgive easily and with no regret 

I captured this picture today while Ammaarah was enjoying the cool sea breeze and fresh air. She was mesmerized by the sound of the waves splashing against the breaker and the sight of the water sprinkling close to her feet.

forgive easily and with no regret
Today was a good day in the land of my motherhood, because I got to spend the majority of it with my little princess. We took her for a walk/ride with her favourite bike along the beach front. Not only did the fresh air take up all of her energy causing her to fall asleep easily and early this evening (definitely doing that again!), but it also allowed me to breathe in something other than work. It was a much needed break, a moment to just stand (while the magnificent sun sets behind you) watching in awe the maraculous development of your child.

I learnt a valuable lesson today, something that I wish to adopt in my every day lifestyle, and that is to forgive easily and with no regret.

After about an hour of my undivided attention to Ammaarah, (no rushing, no stressing, no to-do-list running through my mind, no social media, no nothing other than Ammaarah) she was mine again. The kisses and hugs and screaming my name quickly returned. She forgave me for my absenteeism without such as a whim of any regret. The past several weeks where I felt like a failure as mother was forgotten by her. All she knew was that I was there at that very moment and that was enough.

It was evident that she understood that some parts of life are not easy, which is okay, and that it is not about looking towards the past but looking at the now and at the very moment you find yourself in.

We tend to easily get caught up in our feelings when we have heated arguments with our loved ones, causing us to hold grudges against them for a few days and even sometimes giving them the silent treatment for a few days. After a little while we forget about the moment we find ourselves in, and we chose to look to the past and replay that argument in our minds, causing us to feel more hurt and more upset. I for sure am guilty of that! But why are we doing that? Are we perhaps not missing the point?

Life is short and it is uncertain. I may not have said the words ‘I am sorry for not spending time with you’, but my actions spoke louder than those words and that was enough for her. Perhaps hearing the utterance of the words ‘I am sorry’ is therefore sometimes not needed to forgive.

I hope to remember this moment with PP each and every time I find myself at fault having an argument with my loved ones. May we always take heed of the moments we find ourselves in, and and may we learn to forgive easily and without regret. Because surely our lives will be so much more pleasant if we did that!

xxx

PS. It was slightly chilly today,  but thanks to Pick n Pay Clothing,  PP was kept snugly warm by her hooded sleeveless puffer jacket. It is definitely one of my favourite winter buys thus far!

father and daughter unbreakable bond

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I felt like a failure as a mother

My life has been consumed (in the literal sense) with my work and my career over the past several weeks. I have been working 12 to 14 hours a day and roughly 6 to 7 days a week. In my previous post, I blogged about how being a working mother sucks sometimes and how that has resulted in the deterioration of my relationship with Ammaarah. This morning, sadly, that wound cut even deeper when I felt like a failure as mother.

failure as a mother  
If Ammaarah wakes before our alarm clock has sounded in the morning, we quietly fetch her from her room and bring her to our bed. 90% of the time she falls asleep again, allowing us to snooze for another few minutes. This morning however, Zieyaad left to the bathroom. Ammaarah realised that her father was not there and politely got out of bed. She walked to the bathroom door, shouted ‘daddy’, stood outside of the door and waited for him.

And she waited for him.

She just waited for him to return.

I pleaded with her to come back to the room so that we could play or watch Barney together (she calls any video ‘Barney’ – the cutest!), but she outright refused. She screamed the moment I came close to her which left me with very little choice. I had to leave her be.

My feelings were hurt and my heart broke. It shattered into the most irreparable position ever.

I feel as though I have failed.

As with all of us, I wish to be successful in anything and everything that I am part of and I wish to always better my position in all aspects of my life. I therefore wish and strive to build my career in the corporate world. But how can I justify that when it is my time with my family that is being sacrificed? 

I have been fortunate enough to be chosen to take part in a Women’s Empowerment Workshop. The workshop runs over several months and aims to empower women in the work place. It aims to provide self-reflection on yourself and provide guidance on how you need to empower yourself (spiritually, mentally and physically) in order to succeed in your work place. We are approaching our third month and the most important lesson I have learnt so far is that there has to be a balance in every aspect of your life. The most classic example would be the ‘work life’ balance. The more you give to the one aspect, the more you deprive from the other aspect. One would expect your scale to never be equal, as there will always be priorities on either side that will take preference. But the key is to manage those priorities on both sides so that your scale does not become permanently damaged. (I know, easier said than done, and totally clear in my case!).

So I find myself in a very difficult space, because our deadline at work is looming and I have to deliver. I must deliver. We have been at it for so long now, and the end is in sight, so I cannot give up now. But my little princess dislikes me, and without the luxury of time, how am I meant to fix that?

I have no solution.

All I know is that I need to push through. I am not a failure and I will not give up.

I will learn from this.

I will become stronger.

I will become more resilient.

Ammaarah will love me again.

Part of what keeps me going is the inspirational stories and support I receive from the exceptional women whom form part of my workshop, and the multi-talented women I spent my Saturday morning with at the Kids Emporium Blogger Breakfast over the weekend. Each one of  us were, and are, unique to each other – different careers, different responsibilities, different ages, different races, different family dynamics – but the one common denominator that resonated across all was that we are all consumed by some part of our lives. Some have personal matters, some work matters, some stay-at-home mommy matters, some are juggling between the two or juggling 3 jobs at the same time, and others are expecting their first baby (and we all know how exciting and consuming that journey is!).

Although I have no solution, it is absolutely  comforting knowing that I am not the only or the first (nor the last!) mother/female to go through this exact point in my life. There are many women who have succeeded in building an unbreakable relationship with their family whilst building their career, and we need to support each other so that we can also achieve that. If others can do it, why can’t I? We need to motivate each other, inspire each other and push each other to move just one more step forward, because standing still or moving back is not an option.

So to each and every one of you who find yourself in a difficult position – keep going and push through!  Keep your head raised above the water, keep breathing and keep moving forward. You will learn from this, you will become stronger and you will succeed. 

I know you can do this, you know you can do this, so let’s do it!

xxx

  

Failure as a mother