Photo by: Maryam Lary

Postpartum had a huge hit on my phycological wellbeing, add to that going through it in a global pandemic while my family members are miles and miles away, the sleepless nights, the passing of my grandfather, and much more which I am not yet ready to talk about.

I’ve been struggling with overwhelming emotions of sadness and depression, forcing a smile, a laugh every day for my little one. There are times when food  just feels suffocating.

People around me see the shift in my personality, asking for the Maryam they’ve known back. The one I myself am puzzled… where has she left me?

The more people try to force me to talk, smile, laugh, the more they tell me that I shouldn’t feel the way I do and should be grateful and so on, the more distant and reserved I get with tremendous guilt.

I am very grateful, I know that there are people who are in worse situations and my heart constantly prays for them. But that doesn’t mean that I am not allowed to acknowledge my feelings.

One of many examples in the Quran about grief is Prophet Yaqub (AS) he cried for years after losing his son Yousuf. He still had 11 other sons, yet, he cried until he became blind. Not once did Allah mention that Prophet was ungrateful and that he shouldn’t have felt the way he did. We are talking here about a Prophet with much greater faith than you and me, and that was his situation.

I am not sharing this to gain sympathy, not at all. I am sharing it because we as a community need to understand that we should feel safe to discuss such issues and to support one another instead of making others guilty about what they psychologically experience.

Healing can be complicated, somedays you’re okay and sometimes it hurts like it’s fresh. We need to give ourselves and others respect, love, and time to recover.

Healing is a process and a journey of self-discovery and growth. As you grow as a person, you learn that your journey isn’t for everyone and that sometimes you need to learn to love from a distance those who are not meant to be in it.