Melis* is a SAT-7 TÜRK team member. She ensures that viewers are kept up to date with Christian news from Turkey and abroad. She is also expecting her first baby. Here, Melis shares her insights as a soon-to-be mother.
My husband and I hadn’t planned to have a baby this year, but it was God’s timing. The Lord says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.” (Isaiah 55:8). Similarly, the fears we have for our child are not from Him, but our hopes belong to God.
Being pregnant and knowing that I’m already a mother is an extraordinary feeling. I can’t describe it. The most exciting thing was to hear her heartbeat on the ultrasound for the first time. I think when I hold her in my arms, I will fully know it in my heart.
Having children in these days of uncertainty is a serious thing. We have no idea what will happen, or what kind of world she will live in. Uncertainty scares me. On the other hand, she will be surrounded by people that will protect and love her.
Istanbul is more expensive than other parts of Turkey, especially for healthcare and accommodation. However, there are better schools here which means more opportunities for our child in the future.
I want to work until I’m old – I love my job! But I recognize this is a controversial topic in Turkey. Some mothers in the workplace are put under pressure to quit and be at home with their children. It’s complicated and often multi-faceted. Some women don’t have high enough incomes to pay for caregivers, or they have moved away from their extended family and don’t have support. I consider myself very lucky – we share an apartment with my parents.
A woman’s place?
Many Middle Eastern countries place the value of a woman on whether she can have children, and how many. The same mindset exists in some areas of Turkey – women are expected to serve their husbands and elders but aren’t seen as equals. However, I do think women are generally more valued in our time. More women can work, travel to experience different cultures, and have more educational opportunities. I want to encourage women to pursue change. If a woman is inspired and empowered, she can change the world.
*Name and photo are for illustrative purposes only.