Barah Ibn Malik was a fierce warrior. He had killed 100 warriors in a combat! Can you perceive his strength and skills in fights? We don’t even see such warriors in Hollywood. Anas bin Malik was his younger brother. He was a scholar of Islam par excellence. He ranks among the first four sahaba who narrated maximum hadith from the Prophet. Both were the companions of the Prophet and had the same mother: Umm Sulaim. Her sons Anas and Barah were the sons of a disbelieving father. The man did not accept Islam and also did not allow his wife Umm Sulaim, to teach Islam to his sons. But the lady da’ee continued to invite her husband and her sons to Islam. One day, her husband died in a journey. She received many proposals from dignitaries of Arabia. Abu Talha, who was not a Muslim at that time, also proposed to her. She said, “O Abu Talha! No doubt you are a wonderful man but I cannot marry you because I am a Muslim and you are not. If you become a Muslim, I will marry you and that will be my mahr.” So Abu Talha inquired about Islam and accepted it. Later on, when he contributed to Islam in a grand manner she used to say, “I have received the best mahr on earth.”
And she was right. Talha contributed immensely towards Islam. He accompanied the Prophet in every battle. This woman also participated in all the battles along with her husband. She was more than a home maker. She was a warrior and a compassionate mother. In one of the expeditions, she was in her ninth month of pregnancy! In every battle, she carried a dagger to be ready for an unexpected sudden combat.
They were blessed with a young boy named Abu Umair. He was a beloved child and even the Prophet loved to play with him. One day, the child fell sick and he remained sick for a long time. Every evening, Abu Talha would return home and inquire about his child. One day, the child died. Umm Sulaim did not inform her husband that evening. Rather, she beautified herself and gave a wifely pleasure to her husband at night.
The next morning, she broke the news of the death politely. Abu Talha got upset and reported the matter to the Prophet and to his surprise, the Prophet prayed that the night be a blessing for them! It turned into a blessing. A son was born and from that son, they got grandchildren in large numbers and each one of them was either a scholar of Islam or a warrior! This reminds me of the beautiful Qur’anic verse:
And Allah has made for you from yourselves mates and has made for you from your mates sons and grandchildren (hafadha) (Quran, An Nahl, 16:72)
“Hafadha” means grandchildren with the moral and psycho-social strength that brings joy to you from your children.
Mom-ship does not just begin and end with delivery. That way, even a post man delivers a parcel and a chef delivers tasty food. Rather, it’s all about delivering a good citizen to the society. My grandmother had ten children and she never regretted. All of them are religious, generous and still united. My regular taxi driver has five daughters and he’s always happy even though he stays in a small room of about 200 square feet. I once asked him how he manages to bring up so many kids with little budget. He replied, “Ask my wife! She is the mom and she runs the show”.
Another friend of mine stays in a small house and has two kids, where one is semi paralytic. He has been in a vegetative state for the past 20 years. For the past twenty years, this noble mother has never attended any wedding or gathering, just so she could stay with her son.
For some, teaching kids to speak good English and be seen with them in malls and parks is enough to be qualified as a “Smart Mom”. However, can love be compensated with mobiles and McDonalds? Can love be delegated to baby sitters, nannies and toys (unless absolutely necessary in some exceptional cases)? Many working mothers, party mothers, whattsapping mothers or facebooking mothers are happy to provide best materialistic things to their kids as a compensation for love while remaining fixed on their favorite pass time.
Now, there is a new term coined out to avoid being with children : Quality Time. For me, ‘Quality Time’ is actually a polite camouflage or a synonym for ‘No Time’. Mom-ship cannot be a part time affair or a hobby. Only a robot mentality mom will communicate with her kids through electronic gadgets *all* the time. A real mom will be tired with her kids but will never be tired of her kids. For her, kids are not a burden but a joy. She will put her time spent on her kids in the column of investment and not expenses. Her emotional statement will have affection and time as assets. She will cultivate the seeds of care and water it with affection.
There are thousands of real life super moms who don’t blog about motherhood on the internet. They may be uneducated themselves, but they educate their children to have the best of manners and cultivate immense discipline in their lives. Their life rotates on the axis of their children’s timetable. Their sleep is inversely proportional to the number of hours their kids are awake. They can’t take a Sunday off from mothering, laundry work always piled up and floors always wet, yet they will not get demotivated. Successful mothers are not the ones who don’t struggle but the ones who don’t give up the struggle. When Islam placed the entrance of Jannah under the feet of a mom, it has a reason. Ask any mom and she will tell you why.