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a “niys” mother’s day

May 9, 2011

When I was a kid and played house with my cousin, I was always the “childless professional.”

I’m not surprised that you’re not surprised.

I’d like to say that my feelings towards children changed in my teens but really, the extent of my maternal instinct was me screaming at my little brother to go wash his hands every 10 minutes.

A new orchid. And a new iPhone. The best gift of all? Ali's jealous. Of the phone!

When I was in my early twenties, I finally held a baby for what was probably the first time. It was awkward. And after 20 minutes I was secretly thrilled to hand the baby back to its rightful owner.

The baby was thrilled too.

But then suddenly I was 29 and the first 5 years of my marriage had flown by. And my father-in-law kept saying, “It’s time you and Ali settle down, buy a house with a yard, and give me a grandchild.”

Tea time at my mom's.

The house thing? It never happened. And seeing as I go into a panic just thinking about it, it probably never will. As for the grandchild, I’m still not sure why I acquiesced. Maybe because my father-in-law never asked me for anything else. Maybe because I thought…it’s now or never.

In any case, it’s been 6 years and as much as I bitch and complain about Maya (Often unnecessarily. Often to ensure a funny blog post. Often for real.) I wouldn’t trade her for anything.

A "niys" card.

What I’m trying to say, in a very roundabout sort of way, is that I never had a burning desire to be a mom. But I’m happy to be one. Just don’t ask me if I’m going to have another. And please don’t insist I’ll change my mind when I tell you I won’t have another. Ever.

A good hair day. And a kiss.

Because no matter how “niys” Maya is, and how much I love to “hag” her, it just isn’t going to happen.


80 Comments leave one →
  1. May 9, 2011 2:26 am

    Love the spelling, I am sad because my younger son is starting to spell things correctly. I would never try to convince you to have another but boy love (as if you can pick your child’s gender) is pretty great. Hope you had a niys Mother’s Day. If the photo was yesterday good hair? That’s a great present.

  2. May 9, 2011 2:57 am

    “adorable” ..”very mommy sweet” 😀 ..those are my common sentiments after reading your posts 😀 very “NIYS” 😀

  3. May 9, 2011 3:11 am

    So cute – I was always the one who had triplets while playing house. It’s so funny how maternal instincts come so early to some and later to others! Happy Mother’s Day!

  4. May 9, 2011 3:33 am

    omg i love the card – and the last picture of you two!! she loves her mommy 🙂 hope you had a wonderful mothers day! enjoy that phone!

  5. May 9, 2011 3:45 am

    Agreed. “Niys” – I love that 🙂 …I also love that iphone – even though I really don’t know what it does 😉

    On an aside – I’m watching the TODAY Show and so upset – Meredith Veira is leaving in June! …:( sorry to take over your post 😉

  6. May 9, 2011 3:53 am

    I totally relate to this post. We eventually did settle down and got a house. And then of course we had kids. And when I say kids I mean we tried for one with the intention of ONLY having ONE! And of course were blessed with twins. Boy/Girl. Wouldnt change them for the world now, but when we found out I practically had a stroke. Hubby just remained in the doctor’s office looking pale.
    Two years and and we are coping fine. I recently started work and thanks to a wonderful nanny (which I only found like just after they were a year old!) life has returned to somewhat being normal for me.

    Thanks for your post.

    • May 11, 2011 8:36 am

      A wonderful nanny can make anything bearable. And kudos to you for handling twins! I’m sure I’d be a basket case.

  7. May 9, 2011 4:19 am

    Happy Mother’s Day to a fabulous mother (… and yes, you ARE a fabulous mother).
    *kisses* HH

  8. May 9, 2011 4:34 am

    Happy Mother’s Day Ameena 🙂

  9. May 9, 2011 4:43 am

    I think I’m in what you went through. I’m excited to have children one day, but right now I’m so far from it, it’s not even funny. I’m not overly comfortable holding babies and I have a hard time figuring out what I’m allowed/supposed to do/say in front of each age group. It’s awkward. But one day…

    I’m glad you had a nice mother’s day! Maya is lucky to have you. 🙂

    • May 11, 2011 8:37 am

      I’m still trying to figure out how to act in front the different age groups. I somehow just don’t have it in me to figure out what is age appropriate?

  10. May 9, 2011 5:39 am

    What a cute card from Maya. 🙂 That’s a lovely picture of you and her!

  11. May 9, 2011 5:48 am

    awww i just love this post. happy (belated) mothers day, Ameena. You are definitely blessed to have such a niys daughter.

  12. May 9, 2011 5:50 am

    So cute! It makes me happy that you had a very ‘niys’ mother’s day!

  13. May 9, 2011 6:01 am

    That is the cutest card ever…what more could a mother ask for, right? 😉 Gorgeous orchid too!

  14. May 9, 2011 6:06 am

    so SWEET!!! props to your grandfather for asking for maya!!!

  15. May 9, 2011 6:08 am

    But this is just so sweet! And you and Maya both have fabulous hair in the pic 🙂

  16. May 9, 2011 6:17 am

    I just adore you. I can tell you are a great mama and Maya knows it!

  17. May 9, 2011 7:53 am

    Aw! Happy belated Mother’s day!

  18. May 9, 2011 7:56 am

    Love the cute card she made you and I am glad to know that I am not the only mother out there who doesn’t feel all that maternal naturally. Just like you, I wasn’t sure I even wanted kids and my husband and I used to joke that we were going to adopt an almost 18 year old so we could say we had a kid but we wouldn’t actually have to do anything. That said, I wouldn’t trade my kids for anything no matter how much I threaten to sell them on Ebay.

  19. May 9, 2011 8:04 am

    The sentiments in Maya’s words wouldn’t lie Ameena, such a cute letter. You are a lovely Mama and Maya is a “niys” kiddo!

    PS: Loving the white Iphone, I can actually imagine Ali being totally jealous of you.

  20. May 9, 2011 8:44 am

    I am with you. All the little girls at church begged to hold the babies……..I never did, and I still don’t. I always knew I wanted to have kids, and when I did I COULD NOT GET ENOUGH. I love being a mom so much.

    But guess what, I still don’t enjoy other peoples babies. It makes me sound terrible I know, but I just don’t. But when those babies get to be about 9 months and are fat and crawling their bum all around, I think they are adorable.

    And yes kids give you the best material. The fun & laughter (and work & tears) never stop.

    • May 11, 2011 8:39 am

      I totally agree – I don’t enjoy other people’s babies that much either. I like to hold then when they are quiet and cute but I think that when they are toddlers they are far more interesting!

  21. May 9, 2011 8:46 am

    I just realized you can guilt Maya into having your grandchild and buy her (it must be a her) tons of cute flats!

    Happy Mothers Day!

  22. May 9, 2011 9:14 am

    Dude, you’re living my life (only a way more fabulous version of it)! I don’t care what you say- I’ve seen it in action and you’re a fabulous mom. Hope we get to hang out soon (with polka dots!) 🙂

  23. May 9, 2011 9:39 am

    Aww! I love that card – how cute is she?

    Happy (belated) Mothers Day!! 🙂

  24. May 9, 2011 9:47 am

    ditto. tried it. glad i did. won’t repeat it=1 daughter who can’t spell either, and she’s 24. The good news is she independent, doesn’t live at home and college was a success.

    • May 11, 2011 8:39 am

      Tracy – you make me laugh with every one of your comments!

  25. May 9, 2011 10:01 am

    Lovelovelove Maya’s note, so cute.

  26. May 9, 2011 10:19 am

    Laughing on “hag” comment. hahah! I totally wish I had saved that note from my fremd. I would have framed it.

    And I’m of course touched that you’d have your life be no other way. But totally understand the trepidation of having a child. As someone who decided part way through a great marriage that kids were not right for us, or perhaps that we weren’t right to have kids. I get it.

    And I think that you acquiesced to your FIL because aren’t your in-laws the ones who buy you all sorts of fabulous things and spoil everyone rotten with material things and good-old fashioned love as well? That is almost worth birthing a baby for!? ALmost! 😉

    • May 11, 2011 8:40 am

      I can have your “fremd” write you another one!! She’d be thrilled.

  27. May 9, 2011 10:41 am

    I am deducing 11 years as a mother? What is more difficult? Motherhood or marriage? Your sense of humor appears to make both roles less “serious” and how come you appear to not age? I am in awe of everything you are do….but more so, WHO YOU ARE.
    You being a mother will change this world.

    • May 11, 2011 8:41 am

      Thank you for making me feel like a million bucks. I assure you I age my friend. I’m about 100- years-old on the inside. 🙂

  28. May 9, 2011 10:47 am

    Maya gave you such a “niys” card for al your “hags”. Adorable.

    You have such an amazing daughter, honestly i don’t think you could have done such a great job with your blog if Maya was not your main contibutor.

    I have black iphone but I think white looks way better so Ali is not the only one jealous of your gift.

  29. Leslie permalink
    May 9, 2011 10:57 am

    Looks like a great haul for Mother’s Day….all well-deserved. You must have enjoyed your Mother’s Extravaganza at Maya’s school. That photo of you with Ali is stunning! So pleased you had a good day. BTW, your mother sets a photo-worthy table for tea. The tasties were so artistically arrayed that I expected Food & Wine to photograph it. Glad you caught it for posterity.

    u r vv niys (that’s my new spelling – please let Maya know I snerched it from her)


  30. May 9, 2011 11:01 am

    mA! Too cute for words! I hope I get to be a niys mother…

  31. May 9, 2011 11:15 am

    awee such a sweet post, brushes the memories of me and mom you girl is adorable 🙂

  32. May 9, 2011 12:39 pm

    Love that mother’s day card! I will freely admit I never realized how hard having a second kid was going to be. It’s been a year and I still struggle with getting by – my almost one year old STILL doesn’t sleep. I think we know the size of our families long before we start having them. I love the honesty I encounter here. I also love the humour so if you need to keep complaining about your husband and daughter to keep us entertained, please do!

    • May 11, 2011 8:43 am

      I feel you on the sleep thing – Maya didn’t sleep through the night until she was about 1. And then to everyone’s dismay I just let her cry it out until she started sleeping through the night. Because I knew that she was old enough to do so. And thank you for the compliment!

  33. May 9, 2011 12:45 pm

    Very adorable post. I hope you enjoyed your Mother’s Day and let me just say you and your daughter look wonderful.

  34. May 9, 2011 1:43 pm

    Hahha I love Maya’s spelling and that Ali is jealous of your phone!
    So happy you had a niys mommy’s day 😉

  35. May 9, 2011 2:39 pm

    i think we are twins. i mean, i don’t have a kid or anything but we are twins. love it.

  36. May 9, 2011 3:14 pm

    What a fabulous picture of you ladies.

  37. Piya Ganwani permalink
    May 9, 2011 4:35 pm

    UGH, I’m so fed up of people asking me when I’ll have a 2nd child. It’s soooo annoying. I have run out of excuses! Anyways, looks like you had a niys mothers day :D. I love Maya’s spelling, it must gibe you & Ali chuckles when you read her cards.

    • May 9, 2011 6:24 pm

      Happy belated Mother’s Day Piya! I hope you had a great one too!

      • Piya Ganwani permalink
        May 9, 2011 7:19 pm

        oh oh who am I to talk about Maya’s spelling when I can’t spell…LOL. I meant give not gibe 🙂

  38. May 9, 2011 5:09 pm

    Belated mother’s day wishes to you. Tea time goodies looks awesome.

  39. May 9, 2011 5:21 pm

    Happy Mother’s Day, Ameena! Maya is lucky to have a mom like you!

  40. May 9, 2011 5:38 pm

    Seriously? Seriously. Maya’s gift with the written word is the best. You can’t bottle that.

    When I was in kindergarten, we were assigned stations for free time. All of the other girls got assigned to the “house” station. I always got assigned to “finger painting” or “LEGOs.” I can probably count on two hands the number of days I spent playing with dolls in the faux-kitchen.

    The end result? I can build a sweet LEGO village faster than anyone else I know. THAT’s a life skill right there.

    p.s. I’m SO glad we both had Excellent Hair yesterday.

    • May 11, 2011 8:44 am

      You’ll be surprised at how handy your Lego knowledge will be when you have kids…

  41. May 9, 2011 6:11 pm

    You give me such hope. The thought of a baby growing inside of me is well… gross. I have told the Spaniard that I will try it… I am sure I will love the little bundle once it is here 🙂 But it’s the “getting it here” that worries me.

    Is another holiday where I am given cards and presents reason enough?

    Happy Mother’s Day to you!

  42. May 9, 2011 6:56 pm

    bahahahaha! ❤ Happy belated mothers day my darling! ❤ The card is too cute! My niece drew me and paul a photo b/c his sister feels bad for us not having kids yet. so we get to borrow hers via photos and skype. I like it that way for now. Though I like even more that paul is EXTRA niys and gives me lots of hags and gifts b/c he wants a baby. bahaha! not rushing! though i'm sure i'll have equally amusing stories once I do =) love you like woah! mwah!

  43. May 9, 2011 7:35 pm

    I love all your pics with Maya. A mother’s love doesn’t need a good hair day to shine through in pictures. You are glowing there 😉 and Maya is always cute as can be.
    I wouldn’t trade my holy terrors for anything either, not even a shiny new white iPhone that I’m super jealous about.

  44. May 10, 2011 11:15 am

    Is this the post before the post where you reveal you are secretly 3 months pregnant?

  45. May 10, 2011 12:43 pm

    You have the sweetest daugher… 😀
    And a belated happy mothers day Ameena!!!

  46. May 10, 2011 1:08 pm

    It’s like you have ESP and you are reading my mind about the whole “having kids” thing.

    The extent of my maternal feelings is cleaning shit and piss out of a litter box (that’s just about on a weekly basis) and not throwing up during the process. I get my “share” of kids teaching piano and my photography business. I have never wanted kids – ever. People have always told me “you’ll change your mind…just wait…wait til you meet the right guy…” Well, I’ve met the right guy and my feelings haven’t changed. As scary as it is to acknowledge, I don’t feel like I would be a good mom. I don’t have the “mom gene”. So, basically, it’s nice to see someone who has shared my feelings about not wanting children and see that you can survive even if you do have kids.

    This post is actually more reassuring than you can probably imagine.

    Thank you for being so honest. It’s a rarity nowadays. A belated Happy Mother’s Day!

    • May 11, 2011 11:55 am

      I don’t have a mom gene either Jessica! And it’s been 6 years. So yes, I am proof that if you decide to have kids you can survive it. Once. But I really do hate it when people say, “you’ll change your mind.” Seriously, it just drives me batty! Thank YOU for reading.

  47. May 10, 2011 2:23 pm

    This is very sweet. Glad you had a nice mother’s day!

  48. May 10, 2011 4:25 pm

    Hi Ameena, thanks for stopping by my blog earlier. You have a very lovely blog here. Btw, happy belated mother’s day to you too. Sounds like you had a fabulous mother’s day. I am loving your cards. So thoughtful of your girl to write something sweet to you on that special day. Well, I guess the spelling doesn’t even matter at all, Right! :o)
    I’m glad you like visiting my country. Yes, the food here is heavenly. I wonder have you visited our historical state, Melaka, yet! If not you must visit there next round.
    Have a great day. Hope to hear from you more often.

  49. Janelle permalink
    May 10, 2011 5:32 pm

    I think I need to send my husband the picture of your orchid and iphone. I didn’t get to open any presents on Mothers day, not even a cheesy card! I did get chocolate covered strawberries brought to me in bed – but I made them the night before (!)
    I must say, two children has thrown me for a loop. One was much easier…

  50. May 10, 2011 5:51 pm

    That was a niys post, Ameena. Made me want to hag you.

  51. May 10, 2011 7:25 pm

    That is so cute Ameena. I love love playing with kids but the thought of having one still scares me !!! But I guess when time will come and I will hold our baby for the first time .. it all might just seam right 🙂

  52. May 11, 2011 7:07 am

    Happy Belated Mother’s Day Ameena~

    I love your posts about motherhood and marriage…truly I do.

    and I know you are an amazing Mom and Wife and it’s totally obvious you adore your family.

    Here’s to another great year of motherhood.

    best and hardest job ever!

  53. May 11, 2011 7:38 am

    I was just wondering, what does Ameena do to ‘hag’ Maya?! It took me a while but I got it! What a sweet sweet card. 🙂

  54. May 11, 2011 8:31 am

    Ameena, I can relate to everything you said about having a child. I remember my late hubby and I did not want to have children. We both thought we may not be good parents. We were just too fun loving. Then my son came along and we somehow assumed the role naturally. He is the best thing ever happened to us. I did not regret one day having him. He is definitely the reason that I stayed strong and focused all these years. Even when life was hard being a single mum for many years, it was all worth it because of him. Love Maya’s mother’s day note and love her spelling mistakes too and thanks for sharing joy with us. Happy belated Mother’s day to you.

  55. May 11, 2011 8:33 am

    Bravo! I have to admit that I had the maternal clock screaming at me when I was in my 20’s (and early 30’s, but it went quiet; just about went away. Then I got married and Hubby really wanted a child. Go figure. At 45 I became a mommy. Double go figure.

    I think you rock. I know you’re just being funny and getting laughs. The way Maya looks at you in the pictures shows that the world revolves around you as her mom.

  56. May 11, 2011 8:45 am

    So sweet.
    I feel like you. I have never really been one that wanted kids, but somehow I know that I will have one (just one I hope 🙂 ), and that when I do, I am going to surprise myself and love it. 🙂 Glad you had a niys Mother’s Day!

  57. May 11, 2011 11:12 am

    Aww! Perfect Mother’s Day ever! Y’all are a great family 🙂 I miss my mom more than ever on this day 😦

  58. May 11, 2011 1:48 pm

    I like it here and how honest you are. I was never one to like to play with babies when I was a kid, and the dolls I played with were never baby dolls. When mothers want to show off their new babies… I just look and nod and say how cute, but really don’t care to hold it. I didn’t get married until I was in my 30s, and people would always say…aren’t you worried about having kids, you should get married to have kids. Well I didn’t think it worked that way. I always said if it is meant to happen it will. I’m not getting married just to have a child. I too am happy to be a mom of a lovely daughter. I only have one and am so happy with one. My daughter does not have that only child “spoiled brat” syndrom. She is perfectly happy being an only child. I did listen to my clients who “were” or “had” only children and were happy.

    Anyway sorry to go on and on and I just met you. I will come back and visit often I like your space here! You two are adorable!

  59. May 11, 2011 4:46 pm


    I love the authenticity of this post.
    Happy Belated Mother’s Day!

  60. May 11, 2011 6:47 pm

    Happy Mother’s Day Ameena! Sorry it is so belated! Was wondering around a wonderful little boutique the other day and thought of you! Beautiful shoes, shawls,stationary, and books (and gluten free bake mixes). You would have loved it! XOXO Hope you are doing well!
    can I convince you to adopt me or be a surrogate? I promise I’m a DELIGHT! lol

  61. May 11, 2011 9:30 pm

    Thank you so much Ameena, for visiting my blog and leaving your wonderful comment. You have a very nice space and your daughter looks very cute..:)

  62. May 12, 2011 5:25 pm

    Happy Mother’s Day! You and Maya look beautiful together, and happy. I have ALWAYS wanted to be a mother. Always always always. I just know that I will be. Being a mother is more important to me than even having a husband — I would go it alone if need be. As soon as I hit 20, I was like “babies babies babies”. I WANT one. BUT at the same time I think it is so obnoxious for anyone to make any assumptions about whether or not a woman should have kids. And then once she has a kid, everyone badgers her about more kids. I remember when I was sick this summer and you told me about how you had almost the same thing during your pregnancy and couldn’t do it again. Random people don’t know that. They shouldn’t be making silly assumptions.

    Okay, rant over. However, in addition to being a mother, I have also always known that I intend to have a very high-powered career. It’s just what I want. I want both. And I’m going to have both. 🙂

  63. May 12, 2011 7:03 pm

    I’m just discovering your site and love it! This post in particular is so sweet. Sounds like you have a lovely family and a great (and funny) outlook. Your writing is a joy to read–I know I’ll be back. 🙂

  64. May 14, 2011 7:47 am

    So lovely, Maya and yourself 🙂

  65. May 17, 2011 8:15 pm

    What a niys post! So glad your mother’s day was good!

  66. June 3, 2011 8:56 am

    Sweet….I’m glad she put those stolen crayons to good use. Happy belated mother’s day

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