Pregnancy is viewed differently among different societies and cultures; it is viewed as a curse, a deformity, as a vulnerability factor, a disease and to many a burden. Religiously, however, it is viewed as a blessing and a form of worship for the woman.
In Islam, the status of a woman is nothing compared to that of a man. Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said:
“Paradise is under the feet of the mother.”
The ability of a woman to bear the weight of a child in her belly for 9 months and endure the pain of childbirth has given women an advantage over men.In Surat al-Luqman verse 14, Allah said:
“His mother carried him through weakness upon weakness.” Acknowledging the difficulties encountered by women while pregnant.
This article focuses on the common Sunnahs associated with pregnancy; what the prophet advises women to do from the day, they are confirmed pregnant to the day they successfully deliver their babies.
#1. Keep it private
Upon confirmation that a woman is pregnant she is expected to keep it private among close relatives. Even at that, the news should only be shared with those who will rejoice over it. The prophet said,
“Be discreet in order to achieve what you want, for everyone who is blessed is envied.” Narrated by al-Tabaraani and Abu Nu’aym; classed as sahabah by Al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, no. 943. However, it is Sunnah to announce the birth of the child once the baby is born.
#2. Be thankful
Many have sought for the ability to get pregnant for years but were never blessed with the gift of being pregnant. You should be thankful for this gift, even though pregnancy does come with its effects such as sickness, nausea, vomiting, weakness and so on, that shouldn’t prevent you from being thankful.
#3. Emulate the mother of Maryam (AS)
She was a blessed woman, according to the Quran Al-Imran verse 35,
“[Mention, O Muhammad], when the wife of ‘Imran said: My Lord, indeed I have pledged to You what is in my womb, consecrated [for Your service], so accept this from me. Indeed, You are the Hearing, the Knowing.” This was the dua she made when she was carrying Maryam in her belly. Make dua to renew your intentions and for Allah to make the baby pious.
#4. Recite the Quran for your baby
In about the 20th week, the baby gains the ability to hear. This should serve as the right time for the mother to create a bond with her baby by reciting the beautiful verses from holy Quran on daily basis. Doing this will orient the child and create a relationship between the Quran and the child.
#5. Engage in du’a
Do all the forms of worship permitted for a pregnant woman including praying during late hours of the night and fasting so long as it won’t pose any threat to the wellbeing of the child.
#6. Eat good and exercise
Many people will guide you towards yoga and meditation, which are a great way to relax your overworked body. However, remember that prayer is the best form of meditation and it will calm you and soothe your baby as well.
#7. Do not break your chain of communication with Allah
Stay connected with him by making du’a and talking to him alone about your fears and difficulties. Make shikhara (guidance prayer) over decisions concerning your baby like choosing your doctor and always ask Allah to grant you a safe delivery.
#8. Do not hesitate to take advantage of the maternity leave offered you by Allah
The Prophet said:
Allah has relieved the traveller of half of the prayer and of the duty to fast, and He has relieved pregnant and nursing mothers (of the duty to fast).” (Sunan an-Nasa’i; reliable).
However, do remember to mark it somewhere so that you don’t forget to make it up later.