Young people are often regarded as irresponsible, immature agents of chaos. Full of passion and wild ideas, people in their late teens or early twenties are often seen by society as a group of people who are generally unequipped to make any big life decisions.
As young adults, we feel like we have the green light to behave this way as it is what society seems to expect from us. Growing up in the West, we are taught that it’s okay to delay any major life decision and to “have fun while we still can.”
This is why it comes as quite a shock when I tell people that I was married at 18 and had my first child at 20. At first, some people tend to assume that I am the victim of the “oppressed Muslim woman forced into marriage young” stereotype.
We live in a society that holds negative views regarding labour and birth. Through mass media, we are taught that it is a process filled with a sense of urgency, fear and pain. But it really doesn't have to be that way.
Before I became a mother, the word “labour” gave me so many mixed feelings. Anticipation, curiosity, fear and nervousness were all things I experienced in the months leading up to the big day.
One thing that reassured me was remembering that giving birth is something all women were built to do, by God's design. Yes, labor is painful but it's amazing how a positive outlook can truly help us manage.
When first finding out that they are pregnant, most expectant mothers head straight for their family doctor who then refers them to an obstetrician without a second thought, but did you know that there is another type of caregiver?
Midwives have been around pretty much ever since women have been going into labour.
Modern midwives are certified professionals who have at least a bachelor’s degree, completed nursing and midwifery training and who have also passed exams in order to obtain a license to practice.
As a Muslim woman, I found that there were several benefits to having a midwife:
Becoming a parent is one of those things that you just don't know until you know. We all grow up hearing how challenging parenthood really is, but we just don't realize it until it actually happens to us.
No amount of reading or pep talks can really prepare you for the challenge that is life with a baby, but that doesn't mean you can't try. At 20 years old, one thing that comforted me the most when I learned I was going to be a mother was the fact that my older sister also had her first child at that age.
Dec. 23rd 2011 marked the tenth year anniversary of the "Reviving the Islamic Spirit Conference" -- an event which draws thousands of Muslims each year from all over North America and the world to Canada, precisely at the foot of the iconic CN Tower.
Once a small youth initiative, the RIS Conference has now reached massive popularity among North American Muslims and attracted an attendance of approximately 20,000 people making it a sold out event for the first time since its inception in 2001.
Droves of Muslims descended upon the Metro Toronto Convention Center to shop in the Great Bazaar, to reconnect with old friends but most of all, to listen to inspiring lectures given by a panel of internationally recognized Muslim scholars.