It’s 5.14 am and I am wide awake. We finished eating our morning meal, suhoor, before we start our fast and now I can’t go back to sleep. In a way that’s good because I do have to take Sahare to get her immunisaton shot in a few hours and I feel so groggy if I have to get up within a couple of hours. Now, the hubby is also up playing Playstation 3. Ramadan sure makes for some interesting mornings!
Our poor milkman didn’t know what was going on this morning as he came up to the door to stick the milk in the cooler outside our front door. All the lights were on and we were sitting at the dining table eating…at 4 am! He didn’t know what to think and scurried away quickly lest we opened the door and engaged him in a conversation! Poor guy. What’s really going to blow his mind is that next Friday, he’ll see us again, bright eyed and bushy tailed 🙂
This is what I love about Ramadan; even though it’s way early, we sit at the table and eat suhoor together and the children just have a blast. We laugh most of the way through it. I don’t know if we’re so tired that we’re delirious or because it’s just nice to eat together at odd times of the night. I know it must be a similar sight in most households around the world. Unfortunately, I haven’t experienced Ramadan in India or Pakistan and I know the atmosphere is completely different. In the Islamic countries, Ramadan is like Christmas here. There are bustling markets and malls, decorated to the gills with lights and festive banners. I wish I could let my children experience Ramadan there.
Every Ramadan I am so excited and have the spirit of the month and have such great expectations. Unfortunately, my children don’t. It’s not entirely their fault, we don’t live in an Islamic country and therefore, they don’t see the fervour and the excitement with which it is celebrated in other countries. I guess, even I grew up like that because in England, we didn’t have any family. We had fun though, my sister and I would force Mum to go to iftar at the Central London Mosque which was like three minutes down the road. We would walk there and pray and have iftar. I still remember the little foil tins the food came in and how good it tasted. We had enthusiasm despite not having the whole Ramadan atmosphere. I don’t see that with my children and it saddens me.
I only remember one Ramadan in India and it was so much fun. I was young at the time and not old enough to fast but I was so jealous of my older siblings and my aunts and uncles who did. They seemed to have so much fun. They would get up early for suhoor thoroughly enjoy making parathas and eggs and goodness knows what else. They would be laughing and talking and eating. My uncles and aunts are young folk, not very much older than my older sister and brother, so to me they have always been like older siblings and great fun to have around. One morning I remember sneaking out from under the mosquito net and tiptoeing out side my room to see what all the commotion was about. There they all were, in the kitchen, just having a blast. This is what I would like my children to experience and get excited about; this idea of Ramadan, the festivities, the family, the fun and laughter. The memories they should cherish like I do.
When the girls were younger they really had fun, but as they come into their snotty teen age years, everything is uncool. Thank goodness I still have Sahare and Laith to share the spirit with me. I know it doesn’t help my case that we moved to Colorado where we have no family and no Muslim friends. I have been trying to go the mosque for the children mainly so they can feel Ramadan and make friends, instead I got “Are we going to go the masjid EVERDAY?” *SIGH* and this from children who went to Islamic school for seven years.
I know they miss Houston and their friends. We used to have great Ramadans in Houston. We had iftar parties and then iftar at the mosques where they would see their friends. I even had a suhoor party a few years ago. Now, suhoor parties only work when everyone lives close by and back then all my family lived within five minutes of each other. My cousin Baligh, lived about twenty minutes away and to this day I recall him being the first one there! At 5am! We had fun, even at 5am. Eating and laughing, that’s what family is all about and I am blessed to have such a family. My cousins are like my siblings and there is always a good time when we are together. So, here’s to my cousins and my siblings who are scattered all over the US and the world. I miss you all.
Five down (almost) and twenty four to go! Hopefully my children will get the festive spirit in the coming weeks. Until then, I shall have to have the enthusiasm for all of us.
How is your Ramadan going? And for my non Muslim readers, what do you think about all this? I would love to hear from you all.
Thank you for reading and have a great weekend.