Oman: Motherhood – A Perspective

Oman: Motherhood – A Perspective

As a child, I’ve always loved being around younger children. I’d take care of them and moms in my family where always happy to leave their children with me to babysit.

As I studied to become a speech and language therapist, my love for children continued. I had this great empathy for them and I wanted to specialize in pediatrics in order to work closely with them, and so I did.

As I had my three children, the love just increased, but also the stress that comes with it. The stress that you don’t feel with other children when you have a stress-free young life. The stress that you manage to control when you work with other children at work, but it can easily appear the moment you enter your home.

This is the dangerous part of parenthood. It is when you are too stressed that you tend to take it out on the little ones, the most vulnerable ones, the children.

I admit I lost my temper hundreds of times, I failed them another hundreds of times, I wasn’t the pleasant mom always. I would go to bed at night feeling guilty for whatever happened on different occasions and for whatever went wrong.

Life teaches us, and as we strive to be better people, we also tend to accept that we are allowed to make mistakes, even as adults. I didn’t realize that, as a mom initially. I believed I have to be perfect. I couldn’t understand how you can be so good and competent with other children, while you keep losing yourself with your own children.

Things do change with learning.

I learned to stop blaming myself, and realized that it is fine to make mistakes. I believe that the more I remember myself within my hectic life, the more I become a better person and hence a better mom. It can only be possible by managing myself well. It can be through realizing that, as mothers when we do tend to lose ourselves into our daily routine we forget who we are, what makes us happy and what cheers us up. We lose our hobbies, we forget to indulge ourselves in what brings us joy. We stop reading, going out with friends, going to the gym, laughing, getting a pretty haircut, having a cup of hot chocolate while thinking of nothing.

That time spent for me as a person, lets me to resume my mom role happier, more content and I can give more and more. Life is about giving and receiving.

We do not eat our hearts for what we did, but we learn to forgive ourselves, work on improving ourselves and giving ourselves some quality time in order to be able to give to others part of our beautiful self.

This is an original post from our #WorldMom, Ibtisam from Oman for World Moms Blog.

Picture Credit to the author.

You can find more of her wonderful perspective on her blog:


Ibtisam Alwardi

Ibtisam (at Ibtisam's musings) is an Omani Mom of three, living in the capital city of Oman ,Muscat. After working for ten years as a speech and language therapist in a public hospital, she finally had the courage to resign and start her own business. She had a dream of owning a place where she can integrate fun, play and 'books', thus the iPlay Smart centre (@iplaysmart) was born. Currently she is focusing on raising awareness through social media about parenting, childhood, language acquisition. She started raising awareness on (the importance of reading) and (sexual harassment) targeting school-aged children. Ibtisam enjoys writing, both in Arabic and English, reading and working closely with children. She plans to write children books (in Arabic) one day. Contact Ibtisam at ibtisamblogging(at)

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SOCIAL GOOD: My Struggle Between being a Mommy and a Mama

SOCIAL GOOD: My Struggle Between being a Mommy and a Mama

Alison Fraser Mom2MomAfrica

Last November, I visited Tanzania to meet all of the students of the Mom2Mom Africa program, a not for profit organization that I started a short while ago.  I remember visiting and spending time with all of the students in the program, and they would refer to me as “Mama”. This is common, and initially I didn’t give it much thought. But, I vividly remember the school director telling me that all of these students are just like my “children”. He said, go back to Canada knowing that you have more than 40 children here in Tanzania! It was so touching, and brought tears to my eyes…yet at the same time, the responsibility of it all was so terrifying. Could I meet their expectations? Could I really be a “good” mama to all of these little ones?

You see, I have three little girls of my own back at home. My time is stretched thin providing for them. Could I really be a good mommy and mama? I struggle daily with how to balance both.

People often talk about mommy guilt. It is a concept I understand all too well, being a working mom. I have made many concessions in my career in order to balance work and family.

I work a reduced work week so that I can spend as much time with my girls as possible. So far, it works for us.


But now, I struggle to balance the pressures that come with my not for profit organization work, especially being a mama to these Tanzanian children who stole my heart last November. I am constantly worrying about them, working to secure funding to send them to school, and keeping tabs on their families, many of whom struggle with illness. I spend countless hours on this; late nights and weekends. And, I love every minute of it. But, it does take time away from my little girls…and that causes guilt…mommy guilt. Should I be spending less time working on Mom2Mom Africa and more time with my children…and then other times, I worry about the exact opposite.  It seems like I am forever in guilt mode. When I am in Canada, I worry about the children in Tanzania. Yet, booking my next trip to Tanzania in July caused major guilt. I can’t win.

So, I talked to my daughters about this recently. I tried to explain how being a mama and mommy can be really difficult. Thankfully, all three of my girls were supportive beyond their years.  My girls are my world. And my work in Tanzania, and the children there, are always in my heart, and mind. I just have to do the best I can at balancing both worlds and hope that I succeed.

I think mommy guilt is a common thread that all of us moms feel at one time or another. We are likely too hard on ourselves and most often are doing a better job than we actually give ourselves credit for. And in the end, I think I can be both a mommy and mama. I just have to be conscious of keeping a healthy balance between both! And I now know my girls will help me keep it all in check! Knowing I have their support eases the mommy guilt, and lets me instead channel that energy into being a good mommy and mama! Or at least the best one that I can be!

Mom2Mom Africa has just launched an indiegogo campaign to build a new school and implement a food program at one of the schools they send students to in the Mom2Mom Africa program. Click HERE if you would like to be a part of this exciting campaign.

Can you relate to the “Mommy Guilt” dilemma?

This is an original post written for World Moms Blog By Mom2Mom Founder Alison Fraser.

Alison Fraser

Alison Fraser is the mother of three young girls ranging in age from 5 to 9 years old. She lives with her family in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. Alison works as an Environmental Toxicologist with a human environment consulting company and is an active member of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC). She is also the founder and director of the Canadian Not for Profit Organization, Mom2Mom Africa, which serves to fund the school fees of children and young women in rural Tanzania. Recently recognized and awarded a "Women of Waterloo Region" award, Alison is very involved in charitable events within her community including Christmas Toy and School Backpack Drives for the local foodbank.

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ILLINOIS, USA:  What’s Work Got to Do with It?

ILLINOIS, USA: What’s Work Got to Do with It?

The Caretaker’s Dilemma: Where am I needed most?

The world (particularly here in the USA)  is full of “working moms,” and yet we regard ourselves and others with emotion, anxiety and something bordering on distrust.

If you’re a working mom (or if you are married to one) you know what I mean. You’re chatting with another mom at the park, and while your kids (and her kids) climb up the slides, the conversation turns personal. She tells you that she’s watched her kids climb the slide for the last six hours and in turn, you tell her that you saw patients (or graded papers, or drove to a client, or filled orders) for the last six hours.

And though at this moment both sets of kids feel the same sense of security married to freedom, both of you feel like maybe the activities that comprise your everyday conflict with your children’s needs.

Which brings us back to why we work in the first place, really…Not to give our kids more stuff, but to give them more of what they need: experiences, education, food and shelter. And, when the time comes to buy stuff (which, for most of us with kids happens quite a bit, actually) we like to have the means to make a choice about what we bring into our home. (more…)

Jill Barth

Jill Barth lives in Illinois with her husband and three kids. She reminds you to breathe. She is a freelance writer and consultant. Also, she is the green content Team Leader and columnist at and reads fiction for Delmarva Review. Jill's writing can be found on her blog, Small Things Honored.

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GUEST POST: New Jersey, USA: Mama Bee, Worker Bee, Busy Bee…Balancing Bee?

Buzzzz…….Buzzzz……  It is 5 a.m., and my alarm clock just buzzes away.  I hit snooze one too many times, and I have that same thought cross my mind as it does every morning.  I wish I could call out of work today……  But, I never do.

I have been working on Wall Street for over 15 years, and something in my nature always keeps me going.

I commonly refer to myself as a “worker bee.”  The worker bee in me has been married for eleven years, waited to have a baby for six years and then went through another three years of trying before our little miracle was conceived.

I pat myself on the back when I tell people I never took a single sick day while pregnant as an example of dedication to my job.

I also continued my typical schedule during the entire pregnancy of going to bed at midnight and waking up at 5 a.m.  How do I do it?  Why do I do it? When will I stay home with my baby? These are the common questions I hear from friends and family at functions, parties and holiday get-togethers. (more…)

Wall Street Mama (USA)

Wall Street Mama was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago and moved to NJ when she was a teenager. She fell in love with New York City and set her mind to one thing after college – working on Wall Street. She has spent the last 16 years working on the trading floor at three major banks. As an Institutional Salesperson, she is responsible for helping large corporations and money funds invest their short term cash in the fixed income part of the market. She lives in the suburbs of central NJ with her husband of 11 years, their amazing 21 month old boy and their first baby – a very spoiled Maltese. She has baby #2 on the way and is expecting a little girl in June 2012. She is a full time working mother and struggles with “having it all” while wondering if that is even possible. Wall Street Mama was married at the age of 25 but waited to have children because she felt she was too focused on her career which required a lot of traveling and entertaining. When she was finally ready, she thought she could plan the exact month she was ready to have a child, like everything else she planned in her life. She was shocked and frustrated when things did not go according to her plan. Fast forward four years later, after a miscarriage and several rounds of failed fertility injections, her little miracle was conceived naturally. She never thought in a million years, that she and her husband would be in their late 30’s by the time they had their first child. Since the financial crisis of 2008, she has endured some of the most difficult years of her life. The stress of trying to conceive was combined with some of life’s biggest challenges. She and her husband, who is a trader, both lost their jobs on Wall Street the exact same month. Her mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer and she ended up passing away while she was 6 months pregnant. At times it didn’t seem like things would ever get better, but she has learned that life is cyclical and what comes down must again go up. Leaving her baby boy with a wonderful nanny each day is difficult, but at times it is easier than she would have expected. She still enjoys the seemingly addictive draw of working on Wall Street. The past few years have been dramatically different from the “good days” but she is focused on trying to achieve what she once had before. She is currently working on launching her own blog, Wall Street Mama, in an attempt to guide others who are focused on continuing their career, yet struggle with leaving their little ones at home. She is weathering the ups and downs of the market and motherhood, one day at a time.

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Saturday Layover for July 23, 2011…

I dropped my baby.

There, I said it.  I feel awful about it.  I mean, sit on the floor, head in my hands, sobbing awful about it.  

I had her in my left arm with her head over my shoulder, and we were making our way to the kitchen.  While in my older daughter’s room, I reached up with my right hand to pull the cord to turn off the ceiling fan…and then…blast!…she took off like a runner from a runner’s post.

She kicked me away and then backdived to my left all in one swoop. The perfect escape.  The moment seemed to last an eternity.

I caught her with my left hand. Relief.  But no. All 4 and 1/2 months and 16 lbs of gravity dropped on my arm like a medicine ball onto a sheet of “the other leading brand” of plastic wrap, falling closer, closer to the carpeted ground. (more…)

Jennifer Burden

Jennifer Burden is the Founder and CEO of World Moms Network, an award winning website on global motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. World Moms Network writes from over 30 countries, has over 70 contributors and was listed by Forbes as one of the “Best 100 Websites for Women”, named a “must read” by The New York Times, and was recommended by The Times of India. She was also invited to Uganda to view UNICEF’s family health programs with Shot@Life and was previously named a “Global Influencer Fellow” and “Social Media Fellow” by the UN Foundation. Jennifer was invited to the White House twice, including as a nominated "Changemaker" for the State of the World Women Summit. She also participated in the One Campaign’s first AYA Summit on the topic of women and girl empowerment and organized and spoke on an international panel at the World Bank in Washington, DC on the importance of a universal education for all girls. Her writing has been featured by Baby Center, Huffington Post,, the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life, and The Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists.” She is currently a candidate in Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs in the Executive Masters of Public Affairs program, where she hopes to further her study of global policies affecting women and girls. Jennifer can be found on Twitter @JenniferBurden.

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