“To be content with little is difficult; to be content with much, impossible.” ― Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach.
Just the other day, a friend of mine asked, " How can you be happy having so little when you used to have so much more? Do you have regrets?". Hmmmm..... to tell you the truth, she's not the first person to ask me that.
It has been 4 years since I left the rat-race....
"By (the Token of) Time (through the ages), Verily Man is in loss, Except such as have Faith, and do righteous deeds, and (join together) in the mutual teaching of Truth, and of Patience and Constancy."
Surah Al Asr 103: 1-3
It's true that I had so much more in terms of money, clothes, shoes, handbags and other stuff but all of that came at a price. My work took me away from my family. I missed a lot of small but significant events in my children's life, like their first step and their progression from walking unsteadily to running. I was just too engrossed with my career.
Whilst my career did give me some recognition amongst my peers and friends but I felt small in the Eyes of God.
The Wise Old Man used to tell me, "There's more to life than work. Don't stay back too late." He also said that we will be surprised to know that we can actually survive and be happy with very little. Now, many years after, I daresay that the Wise Old Man is right.
In terms of material stuff or money, I may have less now as compared to before but I discovered something. I have more time for my husband and kids. I'm enjoying motherhood from a completely different angle. And you know what? Most importantly, I have more time for God. I am able to get to know Him better and learn to love Him. I also have more time to get to know our beloved Prophet pbuh, learn his teachings and put it into practise so that I don't feel like a hypocrite when I declare myself to be one of his ummah.
Also, now I have time to reconnect with old friends, spend time with current ones, become a gardener and recently, joined a book club.
So in actual fact, if you think about it, I have much more now than I ever did before. I have more time, more precious time. Time is something money can't buy as it belongs to God Almighty. Regret? Not the least bit but instead I feel quite the opposite....grateful...
Ibn Abbas narrated that Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said:
"There are two blessings which many people lose: (They are) health and free time for doing good."