Once upon a time, Ramadan was really, really sacred. Owlie and I read Qur’an aloud each night, broke our fast on as little food possible, had reasonably small dinners and felt light and alive and grateful. This Ramadan is hugely disappointing, I feel like a Ramadan Failure.
I’m not fasting because I need to nurse bebeface. That in itself does not at all make me a failure. Alhamdulillah, Allah knows His creations well, and allows certain exceptions to the fast, nursing mothers included. I will make the entire month of fasts up when I can, but as the days pass one after the other, I feel more and more as if I’m missing something that I can never get back. I feel, well… almost sore about it. I feel left out at Iftar time; me munching on dates then is not what it used to be. The first date at Iftar, the first bit of sweet, soft fruit that you put in your mouth is better than a hundred dates in any other month. That warm little cup of tea used to make up for hours of self-denial in its first sip. Iftar was quiet and contemplative and, for lack of a better word, magical.
It used to be that Ramadan passed slowly. The first few days were agonizing, of course, but after a week or so, they had a certain, gradual sweetness to them. You counted the days of Ramadan not as being closer to the end of deprivation, but as being nearer to the happiness of Eid. I remember an Eid spent in Islamabad when it was just Owlie and me praying Eid Salah at Faisal Masjid. Now, we come from a very ‘Suck it in, Walk it off, If you lose you leg, don’t come crying to me’ kind of family, but we let all the force fields down after Eid prayer and give each other happy, sincere hugs. I remember that hug, I miss it.
I used to read Qur’an. I used to open its pages and read and re-read the lines until I registered them, understood them, thought about them. It was slow going, but speed was not the issue, comprehension was.
I used to pray Fajr. Now, a combination of odd baby-related sleep habits plus laziness and growing spiritual apathy on my part mean I pray a handful of Fajrs a month. It’s embarrassing to say, but what purpose would it be to hide it? Everything I do, and don’t do, will come out before every human ever born on the Day of Judgment. Blogistan, compared to All of Humanity, is peanuts, and compared to God, Humanity is dust.
-to be continued-