Sania Mirza feels ‘mom guilt’ for missing son’s big day | The Express Tribune


Indian tennis star Sania Mirza is no stranger to dealing with “mom guilt,” a term that crops up every time a mother thinks she’s failed her child, which is quite often. Mothers are hesitant to admit this but they tend to hold themselves responsible for the actions of their children and anything that may have affected them negatively.

Considering their children to be an extension of themselves, mothers also feel the need to be around their children at all times, and doing so, sometimes leads them to feel neglected after the child grows up and goes about his own business. But Mirza feels mothers need to take it easy and sometimes, let the fathers take charge while they chase their dreams.

After failing to attend her son Izhaan Mirza Malik’s nursery graduation due to a match, Mirza penned a note on her Instagram Stories to highlight how bad she felt but how important she thinks it is for her, and all mothers, to forgive themselves. “I am playing in England (working) and my baby boy graduated today,” she wrote. “I wasn’t a part of it and it was such an awful feeling. Unfortunately, we cannot be at two places at the same time. Mom guilt is real guys and it never stops,” she asserted Friday night.

Prior to sharing the note, Mirza had shared a picture of her son in a red graduation cap and gown at his nursery graduation. “But it’s important to recognise it and forgive yourself because no matter what we do, a mother just doesn’t feel like she’s doing enough,” added the supermom and player.

“I am so lucky to have a family and support system that still allows me to chase my dreams. Let’ be kind… to others and to ourselves too. So proud of my baby,” she concluded. While no woman should require approval or “allowance” of family members to pursue her dreams to begin with, it is heartening to see Mirza charge gallantly towards hers, while learning to tame her motherly feelings.

The Indian star’s Pakistani cricketer husband, Shoaib Malik, on the other hand, seems to be playing the perfect father off-field and he’s shared a note for his son alongside a picture posing with him at the graduation. “My sonshine Izhaan graduated from his nursery, making baba super proud!” he wrote in the caption of his Insta post dedicated to the occasion. “You are growing up so fast beta, may you succeed in everything. And I have got your back, always…” he added.

Mirza, who married the cricketer in 2010, in a 2021 press conference at Wimbledon had opened up about how difficult it is for her to be separated from her son while she plays. “Leaving him at any time is difficult. I try to do it as little as possible,” she had said. “But if it’s something I have to do, then that’s what I will do. As working mothers, sometimes you have to do it.”

Mirza, like all tennis players, is often travelling around the world for tournaments, which she resumed playing back in 2020 after a near two-year maternity leave. The former doubles world number one marked her return with an astounding victory at the Hobart International, after losing “around 26 kilos with a lot of workout regimes and very strict diets.” Malik, on the other hand, has to travel often too because of his job. The duo is settled in Dubai, a neutral ground for Pakistanis and Indians.

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