Confessions of a Hifz mom

what happens when the Quran is your world
by Umm Zakariya

Yes, we’re a type of mom. If the Oxford Dictionary had a definition for us, it would read thus,

Hifz Mom
/ hɪfz mɒm/
noun.
female parent, whose social emotional physical and psychological decisions are governed by what Juz her children are memorizing.

I may be guilty of stereotyping my kind, but I do not understate it when I say it is an emotional roller coaster ride. A day may start with elation at yesterday’s sabaq (lesson) having gone well, to worry whether the lesson learnt is still remembered, to panic on finding out the lesson needs to be repeated, to hurrying out to buy the gift promised for completing a goal, to refusing half-heartedly a day out with friends, to listening to others about how much stress is being put on the children who need a childhood, to feelings of self-doubt thinking that they might actually be right!

Of course not all days are like this. There are moments of tear-filled happiness as the children’s well-used Quran Mushaf shows how much they have memorized, clearly demarcated by pages that are well thumbed through versus the pages that are still new and unused. There are moments of extreme pride when the children correct your tajweed and teach you the correct rule. There are moments of jaw dropping amazement when the children connect ayahs from different Juz because they have figured out that their meaning is the same due to the similarity of the words used. These moments are priceless. They are often. And they are worth it.

I have three children doing hifz currently: my daughter is about to sit for her final assessment that will qualify her as a haafiza, my older son is halfway through and my younger son at the beginning of his journey. I also have a little 3-year-old who insists on being counted amongst the to-be-hafiz as he claims to have one ayah under his belt (“Allahus Samad” he recites in his baby voice as he flips through his mushaf and looks up for acceptance). We are at a good place now, with the machine well-oiled with experience learnt the hard way. All our choices, from what we eat, what extracurricular activities we do, our social participations all revolve around this monumental task the children have taken up. However, it wasn’t so easy initially. It was hard to let go and realize that what the children were doing needed an entire lifestyle change!

A hifz family needs to prioritize. And they need to let go. And they need to see the light at the end of the tunnel. They need to realize that memorizing the Quran isn’t a honour bestowed on just anyone. When one commits to this, they need to put their heart and soul into it, and everything else is secondary!

If you are a new hifz mom, or you intend to be one, I will be sharing advice and our experience (better known as mistakes) over the next few blogs inshAllah.

Umm Zakariya is a mother of four. Her eldest daughter is now a Hafiza, and her two sons have embarked on this phenomenal journey as well. The youngest baby aspires to be a hafiz as well, Alhamdulillah