Alhamdulillah, the day has finally come. Ever since my family reverted, this was the first time I had fasted.
My day started with Ammi (mother) waking me up for Suhoor. I was quite excited and was up even before she came in. A few days before the holy month of Ramadan, my mother had explained to me the meaning of fasting and that we shouldn't be falling into exaggeration especially when it comes to food. With a few dates and cereal in a small bowl and cup of hot chocolate, just enough for us to get through the day, I sat and had my first Suhoor with them.
After completing Suhoor, my siblings and I sat on our prayer mats and recited a few ayahs of the Qur'an. As the voice of the Muezzin rose into the sky, I stood for prayer, praising the One who gave me this opportunity to fast for the very first time in my life.
Trying my best to incorporate as much Ibadaah in my schedule, I definitely knew school wasn't going to be easy. Slowly, fatigue and hunger started getting a hold of me.
One of my friends passed over a candy but when I refused, she thought I wasn't well.
"I am fasting"
"So, you aren't allowed to eat anything?" asked one of my friends.
"Not even a sip of water?" continued another one.
I smiled once again and then replied," Yes. no food or drink until sunset."
"It's not that hard," I concluded as the bell rang.
As a revert to Islam, it was my first Ramadhan and I expected people to be shocked but I knew that, at the end of the day, the reward would be worth it.
As the hours pass by, my attention span got shorter and I could hardly follow any classes. Dehydrated and hungry, all getting a grip on me. There were still some hours to go before Iftar. It almost felt like my body would collapse any moment. That's when I reminded myself of the challenges of fasting.
It wasn't about having lavish meals for Suhoor to prepare for the day but it's about eating less and trying to be more productive. I reminded myself of the Messenger of Allah, (peace and blessings be upon him). How he would eat very little at suhoor but still continue making efforts in the path of Allah for the rest of his day. I was reminded of the hunger children across the world feel, and whether there is even an iftar for them?
I wondered how Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) made his Suhoor, how he kept himself busy, how the Sahabi were indulged in the remembrance of Allah. Back then they didn't have all the facilities we had, and they were in the middle of the desert. As I was on my way home, I paused in front of a bakery and I watched the cakes displayed. I thought of all those kids who has never had the chance to taste meals like mine. Kids dying out of hunger every single day.
How we are so careless about the amount of food we intake and throw away.
As I reached home, I had put my bag away and performed Wudhu. My heart sank into an utter devotion to the one and only Creator. At the end of my Salaah, I stayed on my prayer mat, making Tasbih to my Creator, asking for forgiveness. Astaghfirullah.
Dates and fresh juice were being set on the table. With very little food set on the table, we all sat and made Du'a. My eyes fixed on the horizon as I watched the sky sinking into a pale pink and an imposing blue. Just as my heart whispered Du'a for the ummah, the voice of the Muezzin reached my ears. Alhamdulillah. I had made it through. I had been blessed with the opportunity to fast and by the will of Allah.
And that was the end of one blessed day in the month of Ramadan. My soul was fed during the day with thoughts and remembrance of my Creator. As I picked a date and placed it in my mouth, I realized how blessed I had been to have food on my table, to have something to drink. Ramadan wasn't only about the food for the body, but it was also the food for my soul.