The New Ramadan Era

We both agreed that it didn't feel like Ramadan. Not in the sense of having to fast per se, but rather in how this Ramadan felt different than others. It's really the first month of fasting where we have to create new a reality as a couple in our own home rather than with family.

Don't get me wrong, we were looking forward to Ramadan and the spiritual journey we were about to undertake. And at Day 4 if Ramadan 2012 and our apartment looking more like a home rather than Ikea, we've been afforded more time to focus on this precious month. Which means not worrying about what to cook for Iftar, but rather how we work together to support one another's quest for spiritual, physical, and mental harmony.

I think back to last Ramadan and realize how quickly life has changed. Last summer I was living at home with no marriage hope in sight. I focused on my own spiritual quest and devoted a large amount of time to Muslim community endeavours, including the birth of MSDI. I was afforded the time to blog every morning after Suhur (haha, not this year!) and had a close network of friends whom I spent a lot of time with.

This year, we together are the focus for one another, as well as our families. It's hard in that we feel removed from the routines that we were used to and the lifestyle we had. We described it as living in another reality and then only when we step outside of our home to go to work or school or groceries does it remind us of life as we know it. And then we realize that the main source of this feeling is how much change we've gone through in the past month. Apart from getting married, we spent two weeks away from family on our (mostly adventurous!!) honeymoon, got back and had to set up our home right away (despite jet lag and stomach woes!), and then we've jumped right into Ramadan, an intensely demanding month. And for me personally, I'm back at work today with summer camp, and Asif is back at school in the next two weeks. Talk about a stressful timeline!

But Alhamdulillah, we are blessed and thankful, and I personally have given up any hopes of achieving this perfect-home-peppy-wife image that is often conjured up of newly married women. I'm quickly realizing that it doesn't matter how often you clean, the dust will settle again. And as much as I love to wash dishes and have it be done with, the dishwasher allows me to spend more time with Asif post-iftar. The laundry can also wait one more day.

So I'm putting aside my OCD like tendencies with home cleaning and organization and realizing that our new life is about more than creating this magazine-cover perfect image. While we've only been married for under a month, the one thing we've quickly come to realize is that quality time is not doing errands and home tasks together. Quality time is sitting face to face/side by side and having nothing to distract or take our attention away from ourselves. Because even after a day of running errands together, come the evening, it feels like we've barely spent any time together.

And so this is what we endeavour this Ramadan to be...more about being, and not doing. InshaAllah :)

Comments

  1. Beautiful post, Sameera and a timely reminder. Ramadan Mubarak and Shadi Mubarak to both you and Asif.

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