The Prophet (s.a.w.) & His First Wet Nurse
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Shaykh ‘Utsman Nuri Tufbas wrote, in “The Prophet Muhammad Muswthafa the Elect (s.a.w.)”, that the Prophet (s.a.w.) was born fatherless. This was lucidly expressed in the Qur’an:
أَلَمۡ يَجِدۡكَ يَتِيمً۬ا فَـَٔاوَىٰ (٦)
Did He not Find you an orphan, and Give you Shelter (and Care)? (Surah adh-Dhuha’:6)
For the first few days, the Prophet (s.a.w.) was suckled by his mother, Sayyidatina Aminah bint Wahb (r.a.). Then Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah (r.a.) briefly got to breastfeed the child, along with her own little one, Masruh.
A pillar of loyalty, the Prophet (s.a.w.) always took care of the needs of his nursing mother, Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah (r.a.), throughout his life. Both he and Sayyidatina Khadijah bint Khuwaylid (r.a.) treated Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah (r.a.) with kindness and honour during their Makkan years. Even after migrating to Madina, the Prophet (s.a.w.) ensured her needs were taken care of, by sending her provisions. After hearing the news of her demise, during his return from the Khaybar expedition, in the seventh year of Hijrah, the Prophet (s.a.w.) inquired the well-being of her son, Masruh, in order to send him support, only to find out not only about his death, but also the bereavement of all of Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah’s (r.a.) relatives well before her own. This was recorded by Shaykh Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad ibn Sa’d (r.a.), in his Thabaqat al-Kubra’.
The respect and honour shown to Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah (r.a.) by the Prophet (s.a.w.) provides an exemplary instance of grateful loyalty. It was Sayyidatina Halimah Sa’adiyah bint Abi Dzu’ayb (r.a.) , after Sayyidatina Tsuwaybah (r.a.), who received the honour of becoming the nursing mother of the Prophet (s.a.w.).