A story of lifelong struggle to achieve what she had dreamt about, Abira Hayat shares her story of challenges, struggles, and sacrifice.
I saw my name on the list. The long sleepless nights that my mother had spent after my father’s death, her struggle to provide for us all these years, and the difficulties she faced because of her medical issues came before my eyes as I called her to tell her that I got admission in the medical college of KMDC. Five years passed to that day and my mother continued to sacrifice herself for my siblings and me.
I was in the midst of my final year exams when the pillar of my strength my mother passed away. She, who since I was 12 when lungs cancer took away my father, has strengthened me, left me alone. It was soon that I realized , her guidance all these years had made me into a strong woman and I completed my degree with my brother’s constant support.
Marriage gave me a companion who showered me with love and care, but my daughter’s medical issues demanded me to sacrifice just as my mother had sacrificed for me. I left my career, but the struggle, sacrifice, and courage that had led me to achieving my degree as an MBBS doctor and then a gynecologist after marriage seemed like a waste when I had to take the decision to leave my career for my daughter.
In Pakistan, the taboo of depression worsens several cases. In my case, the long struggle to get an education and the feeling of a void that my mother had left in me pulled me into severe depression at a point that suicidal thoughts were routine and my self-esteem was in tatters. I worked on hand-made jewelry on the recommendation of a friend to start a home-based business. As my business grew, my depression reduced. I am often reminded of my tirelessness after double shifts because of my dedication to my career. But the growth of my business and the new things that my daughter learns every day because of my efforts makes me realize that a mother’s sacrifice never goes to waste.
My efforts now remind me of my mother who worked hard round the clock to get food on our table and clothes for us to wear. She was my strength then – she is my strength now.