The Egyptian Super Mom

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Years ago, mothers were just mothers. They sat at home doing needle work, spending their mornings with their friends, sipping Turkish coffee and socializing. They had the afternoons to take care of their families. While, men were responsible for bringing supper to the table and women had time to listen to their kids, take care of themselves and their husbands. The pace was quiet.

Later on, women started to work and changes occurred among Egyptian families; the woman reached a stage where she stood side by side with her man sharing both financial and parental responsibilities. Those couples were glued to each other and climbed the proverbial ladder together. They were equal.

But somewhere along the years, women got more chores to do than ever, they clean, cook, baby-sit, work, drive, and socialize everything! The burdens set on the average Egyptian woman appeared when the average Egyptian man withdrew from being there for his family and got distracted by one reason or another. Some men immigrated to Arab countries to make more money, they spent their days counting money and time to return home. Their caliber being the car, apartments, home appliances, and only few knew when to stop. Others vanished while being there, their roles shrinked to money givers, and some just played the honorary role in the lives of their families and resigned to being distant observers.

With the Egyptian man withdrawing, the new super mom gender just had to survive. It’s not uncommon to find a woman running after the bus with a kid in her hand and groceries in the other, or a woman who is preparing next day’s meals while studying with her kids, ironing her husband’s shirts and finishing a work report (all at the same time!). And do you know how many maids are out there who were actually housewives but had to go out to work to give the money to their husbands??  

Super Egyptian moms appear in every social standard. They always look tired and worn out, their minds work 24/7 thinking about the future of their kids—they know that the boy will need good education and that the girl will eventually get married, so they plan ahead, looking for special offers for clothes, managing installments, stashing away some cash for a day of need. They are very proud of their kids when they achieve something, they know at which stage their kids are and they know what are their strength and weaknesses. They are aware that they have kids and they live up to their responsibilities; whereas, a lot of men don’t know the age, stage or the preferences of their kids. They show up at annual shows or in doctor’s clinics mute, just smiling, proud that they have kids but not knowing more than that. If the woman is lucky she gets financial support plus the observing man, but if she is not lucky enough and the man is too selfish then he will do whatever he pleases in life while the woman does the juggling up work/house/kids act alone.

Definitely the role of a mother is to take care of her kids, she has more patience in dealing with tantrums, traumas or teenage craziness, but if God wanted women to take care of everything on their own, then why did he create men? And if men had their minds where they should be then why do they let the woman burn and stretch her doing both women and men’s jobs. And whatever happened to equality? That was a good phase!!!!

I am not saying that women are saints and men are devils, there are some women who totally depend on their men and who just don’t care about anything, but despite that I don’t like this, I have to admit it makes the woman look fragile and feminine, on the other hand it makes the man looks weak and silly.

The average Egyptian woman is always juggling more than she could manage. With burdens more than a donkey going uphill while carrying too many sacks on his back (sorry!), the woman carries financial, social and parental burdens. Moreover, women usually forget about their health. Though the super Egyptian mom might look like she is bound to snap at any given moment because of the multi-tasking, she is never tired of taking care of her kids….

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