This month on “The Mummy”, With Love, Mummy brings you a Mummy who is no stranger to the entertainment industry. From film to TV to theatre, even radio and emceeing, this Mummy is the definition of “a woman of all trades”.. This amazing Mummy is no other than Sharifah Aleya!!
With Love, Mummy got in touch with this crazy, fun Mummy and asked some easy questions on both working life and family life and Leya (whom she casually is known as) was so honest, you be like, “I LOVE DAT WOMAN!!!”
WLM: Tell us about your gorgeous family.
Leya: A typical dysfunctional, kelam kabut (all over the place), young family filled with love, support, fights and giggles… Hihihi…
WLM: What’s the difference on having to raise twins for your first birth compared to your recent little boy?
Leya: It’d be easier to list the similarities. Almost nothing is the same. Both times was and is tiring. Both times is a fulfilling kind of tiring. With the twins it felt like I could never get enough help but I learned to manage on my own after some time (after my divorce). They both were so much help though. They learned to be pretty independent and helped each other out which in turn helped me out loads. They’re my angels.
It’s still too early to tell how Ali will be. What I can say is, he is my little sonshine. 🙂 He came along to complete our little unit. Seeing as I resigned from work, I’ve had more time to spend with him and the girls. So as I said, very little similarities. Both experiences taught me new things about myself and about responsibilities. All 3 children (together and individually) are my inspiration and each are my teachers.
WLM: Did the twins welcome Ali well when he first arrived? How are they with him now?
Leya: They were the most excited and are obsessed with their baby brother. Until today (Ali is 11mths) they congratulate me on giving birth to “our best brother in the world…”. MasyaAllah. I pity the boy sometimes though, semak with his over-doting sisters… Hahaha…
WLM: How has motherhood changed your life?
Leya: I learned “macam mana nak jadi orang” (how to be human) lah basically… I’m calmer, more concerned about how to keep them happy and content than I am about myself. I’m more disciplined now. Maybe a wee bit too strict, but more with myself than with them, and definitely less with everyone else. I’d like to believe that they’ve made me a nicer person. 🙂
WLM: Understanding that you have been divorced and now have a new man in your life (Ali’s Daddy), how did Miko come along? How did he come together about marrying into a family?
Leya: Miko and I have been friends since we worked together in a musical theatre production in 2011/2012. We had been hanging out, all of us, a medium sized but close knit group. Things started getting serious only a year before we got married. We just gravitated towards each other, soon the big group started getting smaller until it was just the 2 of us. 🙂
I don’t think it was all that awkward when it came to joining our little family (or at least it didn’t seem so, if it was, he never showed it.) It was very important to me that my daughters be able to accept him, be comfortable around him and care for him and vice versa. Alhamdulillah, it all worked out. Plus, i think the fact Miko comes from a family that is pretty much like mine in terms of how close they are, their open mindedness, love for each other made it easier for us to blend in to each other’s family.
WLM: How is he with the littles?
Leya: Miko is Papa to Aza and Asha. He is an amazing Dad eventhough he pretty much had to learn everything overnight. They respect him enough and still runs to him when they’re bored and want someone to play hideNseek with. Heck, they even look for him when they want to play makeup! Alhamdulillah, he loves them and cares for them as much as his own.
WLM: How do you balance between being in the spot light and being a mum?
Leya: Ya Allah, if I had an actual answer for this question, I’d be the most perfect person in the world. Truth is, I am like every working mother in the world… I’m still learning to find that balance, trial and error.
WLM: Have you even been/felt guilty being away from your children? If so, how do you balance that out?
Leya: I think I lived the first 2yrs of my twin daughters’ life engulfed in guilt considering I was working fulltime. I tried balancing it out by spending as much time at home with them as I could. It was hard though. I worked weekends and odd hours too. It saddens me to think of the missed moments I’ll never get back. I still apologize to them for it.
WLM: What is the hardest part about being a working mum?
Leya: Time, or the lack of. With Ali, I have more time. “More” doesn’t necessarily mean a lot though. I still have work, errands, running around etc. But InsyaAllah, whatever little time we have, we’ll savour and enjoy.
WLM: What is the best part?
Leya: This may sound horrible, but the best part about being a working mom is work = escape. Let’s face it, every woman needs some time on her own. To reflect, to focus on her passion, to focus on herself. For me, work does that. It allows me to escape for a few hours where noone yells “Mommy!” and is more interested in my skills and abilities. 🙂
WLM: Whats a typical day like for you?
Leya: Wake up – Thanking Allah for another day – Getting the girls ready for school – bathing before Ali wakes up (this is very rare) / bathe Ali and then bathe – errands/chores/work – lunch – errands/chores/work – pick the girls up from school – errands/chores/work – home – spend a few hours with hubs and kids chatting about our day – get kids ready for bed – an hour for myself to unwind then bedtime.
WLM: What is your most favourite thing to do with the family?
Leya: SNUGGLE! ️
WLM: What would be the most important advice you could give to working parents?
Leya: Time! Find as much as u can, utilize it as best you can and leave not one second unused or doing nothing. A simple 5mins conversation with your 6yr old twins can change your mindset for the rest of the week InsyaAllah…