My beloved children both my son and daughter returned back to New York yesterday. This has been a bittersweet summer to say the least. I learned many things about motherhood, patience, and tolerance. It’s definitely not easy being a mother of 4 on a fulltime basis. I have no idea how moms do it everyday, every second of their lives juggling responsibilities as a mother and wife.

This summer passed so quickly and although I have lost about 15 lbs from stress and have black circles under my eyes I wouldn’t change a thing about this amazing season. My children have so much brightness and light radiating from inside of them, and I felt that my family was complete for once – chaos and all included. The day before their departure I can’t even begin to describe how I felt, but will do my best to illustrate it.

As the day began, the kids were rambunctious as usual, and it was the daily chores and last minute tasks that kept me busy from thinking and feeling the emotions that would have me burst into tears. I cooked early that day and it didn’t hit me until later that evening when my husband took all four children to the playground, and I had one on one time with my thoughts.  I  began to make cookies, and as I spooned the cookie dough onto the cookie sheet, each dallop represented this summer’s memories, like a beautiful patched quilt. Memories of the laughs and tears we shed together during these 2 months. One of these memories being my 7 year old daughter’s realization of what true friends signifies. One of my focuses during this summer with her, and my 8 year old son overcoming his aggression and talking about his feelings and channeling them into something productive and positive.

I remembered their drawings from our arts and crafts hour. My son’s picture of a heart and words on the paper saying “I love mommy and Hussein (hubby), and my daughter’s beautiful poem “Roses are red, violets are blue, if you come to me I’ll kiss you too”. I made about 21-24 cookies all holding a beautiful meaning. I soon found myself welling up with tears and they soon rolled down my face continuously. Tears of sadness, and heartbreak. The time was so close for them to leave. My heart was encompassed with so much pain and no matter what I did to try to toughen up I was a mess. My babies were going back to their father, and a huge part of my heart was leaving. The warmth   and  love I showered them with wasn’t going to be available to them on a daily basis anymore. They ate their chocolate chip cookies with a glass of cold milk that night. A memory that they would take back with them. 

My son told me that night how much he loved my cookies and although he’s a boy and has his way of opening up about his feelings, I noticed they were being strong not for themselves, but I sensed it was for me. They saw my eyes red and I know they knew I was crying earlier. I know they understood why also. They cracked some jokes and my little soon-to-be tweens were strong for mommy. It’s never easy being a child in the middle of loving both parents and being put into an environment of becoming a blended family for 2 months. All in all they were exceptional and made huge progress in behavior in such a short time. In their eyes I could see the sadness that they were leaving, and they didn’t even mention it that night, but I could see it was their main thought. I soon tucked them in, kissed their foreheads, and just before closing the door they showered me with blown kisses of love (our nightly routine). “This time it’s huge kisses mommy, with lots of love for you , we love you good night mommy” they said.

The day of their flight I bought them some burgers and fries, and just before they were to board the airplane, I sent them off with a goodbye kiss. My daughter was a bit indifferent at that moment, but my son gave me this tight hug around my waist. A hug, I sensed to mean let me hug her tightly because I’m not sure when I will see her again. This brought tears into my eyes. I knew that my babies were finally leaving and only Allah knows when we would see each other again. I waited about 10 minutes to sign off on the paper work that the airline gave me. Then I walked down the corridors of the airport feeling empty. I was walking alone every step without my two beautiful darlings Micheal and Elise. I missed their voices and little chit chat among each other. It was silent, and quite serene in the airport. I soon put my sunglasses on to somewhat hide my feelings and walked to my car. The house felt so empty when we arrived back home.

A piece of me missing again. I have been bottling theses feelings for so long, and have just now opened myself completely to those feelings publicly. I could honestly feel my heart hurting and my soul aching. I’ve been restless since last night, trying to get back to the old routine of just having the babies around. My heart trying to cope with not having my two oldest present all the time. My mind reasoning the situation and trying to come to terms with these circumstances. My soul distressed. I have leaned towards my faith in Allah through all of this. I know this is a test he has placed on my shoulders. This has given me strength in something that is so difficult for any woman to endure, trusting in Allah and knowing that He is aware of my children’s needs and our emotions. This has kept me grounded and humble during these four years. I know how much they need my love, warmth, and support. At 27 years of age I think I have really understood what the love of a mother entails. I can relate to my mother, grandmother, aunts, and every women on this planet who has been given the gift of motherhood. There is no love on this earth that compares to that of a mother. 

Her role in society is of great honor, her role not only impacts her family but the world. We have the most beautiful task. A gift Allah has bestowed on us and its our tenderness, compassion, and mercy that molds the future of tomorrow. This is just one thing out of many that we leave behind as our legacy. The love, knowledge, and time we have put into our children is something that we hope and pray gets passed on from generation to generation.  May Allah keep all mothers who are away from their children strong, determined and patient. Because Lord knows I’m not the only one who heartaches and misses her children every second of the day.