Archive | June 2014

A Mummy’s Ramadan

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Dear new mummys out there, don’t let the worrying whispers of shaitan get you this Ramadan;

You may not be able to fast the whole 30 days (or even one); yet you can always be grateful for the Most Merciful for allowing you to abstain from the fast. Don’t feel them as “off days” whether it’s only fast or even also prayer, for you could always hold the good intention of raising that little one in your womb or in your arms; and be truly thankful for the blessing bestowed upon you without your power.

You may not attend the taraweeh at the mosque the whole 30 nights (or even one) with your hands full with a little one. Yet don’t fall off the spiritual stairway as Allah the All Hearing the All Seeing knows your supplications and prayers wherever room you may be.

You may miss out on volunteer work of making meals for Iftar at the place where you used to go, yet you could always cook for your family and send out a meal; it is indeed a good deed.

You may spend more time than you ment fussing over toddler food or cleaning up after a little accident or a toy hurricane; but remember if you have food, shelter

Through the sound of Quran, the lights of midnight prayer and the hand of charity;  let it be a hidden motive for that little one watching,  as children see, children do; it is not reyaa’ , it is as much as you care to teach their minds, try to reach for their souls. Along the month, always ask Allah for acceptance, forgiveness and strength,  knowing that only Him we pray to, only Him we seek help from.

No matter how small the act or how small the person you care for; you may well break the habit with sincerity; motherhood can be literally truly rewarding.

picture taken from Ramadan Moon illustrations by Shirin Adl
special thanks to sister Hosai Mojaddidi for her inspiring Facebook post

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Ramadan Reflection

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Having been exempt from fasting the last couple of Ramadans, I have such a renewed spiritual reach as if it were my first holy month. Being that I’m in my off-days matters are only getting more emotional as the first sunset announces the night. Yet I pray it be a blessed month,  productive, prosperous and pure intentions. Here might be a few reflections I wish to share.

1. My purpose
It would be to worship Allah as He SWT pleases in the holy month he pleases; not to worship Ramadan and forget afterwards as it has happened before. Prayer, Quran, Charity and Fasting with “ikhlaas” InshaAllah, Allah help us and permit.

2. My family
Is not a distraction from ibadah but rather a means to great good deeds. Playing with my tot, cooking for hubby or even changing a nappy could be set as a “hasana”.

3. My community
Just because I am not in a Muslim country doesn’t mean I should give up the collective spirit of Ramadan. The local mosque, Muslim friends and non-Muslim neighbours can be part of the celebration and dawah.

Starting the moon as if it were my first, ending it as if it were my last. I pray that we emerge from these 30 nights enlightened  and forgiven… Ramadan Mubarak

5 minutes in a Mum’s Head: My Version

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Good morning sunshine. Oh it’s seriously really sunny, I mean I really need to get those curtains I’ve had in my Wish List for 3 months now. Hamza’s curtains do the trick, just not sure of the colour. Not sure if that blackout business makes him sleep in at all. I wonder what time it is? Let me check my mobile; oh no it’s in the living room on the charger… yeah the alarm clock is right here. Wait why can’t I see the pointy arrow things? I need my eyes checked, oh no no I remember now, little Hamza took them off. Wow, we need a new alarm clock; digital maybe,  something baby proof.

By the way,  is the baby monitor on; funny I can’t hear Hamza? Is he still sleeping? Why did I wake up then if he’s asleep?! Maybe I can catch some Zzzz… OH DEAR! Did I wake up for Fajr?! Yes, yes that was today, it was still dark even not on the verge of sunrise. MashaAllah, May Allah bless us with praying on time. I wonder how teaching Hamza to pray is gonna be like; it’s nice that I try to set a humble example seeing me pray in the same room, yet somehow he’s linked “Allahu Akbar” with wearing my veil; that’s cute, but it’s a girl thing… but I don’t want him to end up sexist. OH my, am I a good mother?

Speaking of which, I should text mum a nice “good morning”. I appreciate her now on a whole new level, in the motherhood it’s a sisterhood. I really love mum; I love Hamza; does he know I love him? Does he love me? I’ve been so busy lately, am I a good daughter? ! Busy doing what? I’ve two full laundry baskets, do the dishes, hoover the carpets; I need to get organised, not do it all at once, those noodles from last night are all over the high chair, they must be crisp by now… so that’s definitely not going to be noodles for today’s dinner,  chicken? I’m not sure if I feel like it, besides; it’s got to defrost. Mmm, let me think what’s getting close to the best-before; Aubergine!  That’s it, aubergine with…pasta, or with couscous, I love a one pan dish, less mess for tomorrow’s dishes; I HATE doing dishes! If only I could use Hamza to help with the chores. Hehehe

However,  hubby had offered to get me a dishwasher,  I just wanted that charm on my bracelet;  my priorities! I could seriously get back to sleep; I think I still have time. .. imagine when we get school runs InshaAllah; that will be a challenge!  Getting up and ready and getting Hamza ready all before a school bell rings;  I remember my school bell…Brrr! goosebumps.( I can’t believe it’s been 4 years since I graduated!!!) But then I’ll have all day for myself,  naps, chores, maybe even in a not so fictional future work on my thesis.  It’ll be nice and quiet. ..too quiet,  I’m missing Hamza already, they grow up so fast. Bless him honey, May Allah guide him all the way.

I wish I could do more with my time,  for Hamza and for hubby and for me. Who am I supposed to be again? I wish I could go back to grad school for that long awaited PhD. Or finally fully recite the Quran InshaAllah. Big plans and resolutions, but what I’m doing now must be important too, I guess. Nappy changing, toe tickling, potty training, tantrum checking; wow. Some days I just want to wake up to a clean and tidy house, take Hamza and off to the pool. I reeeeally miss being in the water. It won’t be necessarily swimming with Hamza around in his first trunks, but I hope they don’t force me into the kiddie pool. Anyways, upwards and onwards, to my “damage control” chores. Perhaps I could wake up Hamza with a melodious smile. ..wait a minute, I can hear something, it’s turned into a cryyy. Oh well, perhaps his smile will make my day. ElhamdlAllah; can’t count the blessings.

Special credits
Reference to the inspiration; http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/5445948 by Bunmi Laditan

Hate Crimes

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The past month or so has been witness to a number of crises against women; most of which “Islamism” is there to blame. One of which I confidently condemn with all my heart, the stoning of the Pakistani daughter by none other than her father,  murdering her and her unborn child.

I am definitely not a scholar, and cannot go issuing a fatwa on the matter,  yet it seems disheartening to call this an “honor killing”. Though the necessity of the father’s approval to his daughter’s marriage is pivitol to the matrimonial process in most Mathaheb; the lack of approval should not leave the marriage void in that followed by Pakistan. Nonetheless, it is the bloody society that acknowledged the father’s doing that is not too distant from the female burials in the pre-Islamic Arab Peninsula.

The second story is much of a grey area, as a Sudanese woman is sentenced to death for apostasy and adultery, with the claim of leaving Islam to marry a man of Christian faith. Though the counter claims and defence are long and unclear; both stories have struck collectively the human rights watch and feminist activists. And even though “Mariam” was finally released yesterday, as to per a legal loophole as described by some; she was yet again arrested along with her family at attempt to leave the country. Politicians around the world felt it fair to criticise these “barbaric” laws to their wordings.

Closer to home; a woman was sexually assaulted in Tahrir Square, Egypt. The timing of the attack and the gruesomely shared footage came as a shock to a majority who had chosen silence for all too long. The stigma that had once lied with the victim was now banished in a political press release of flowery flavour; all the better to profit from the situation, while others turned cynical to prove how safe and sacred their stand-ins were.

And much closer to my second home, a headline of “Student Killed For Being Muslim” didn’t have as much of an echo. In fact, some media official felt it “awkward” for the police to investigate the hate crime as a valid line of inquiry. The 30 year old “visibly Muslim”, abaya wearing woman was too culturally critical for the news.

Now, the critical point where public figures denounce all above acts may somewhat strike an imbalance; a conflict of interest… it may be convenient to apologise to the rape victim; whilst claims everyday of sexual abuse of political detainees are resounding. It may be acceptable to point out faults wrongly linked to Islam due to some extreme practices; yet it is wise to cover up news of a murder that might show extremism against Muslims. Such dilemmas are always brought to surface in an Islamophobic light…

Concerns as a mother are paramount; as I hope and pray to raise my son a proud Muslim, peacefully coexisting with diversity without ever misrepresenting his religion or shunning from it.