This is a different kind of Ramadan for me. For the first time since I reverted to Islam, I’m not fasting. I didn’t do any preparatory fasts either. And the reason, alhamdulillah I’m pregnant. Ramadan doesn’t feel like Ramadan when you’re not fasting. From my own experience so far, I’ve realised you have to make Ramadan special when you’re not eating suhoor and iftar like everyone else.
“And as for those who can fast with difficulty, (e.g. an old man), they have (a choice either to fast or) to feed a Miskeen (poor person) (for every day)” [al-Baqarah 2:184]
According to Ibn Abbas (rh) this ayah relates to the old, and pregnant and nursing women. If you’re able to, healthy and there’s no harm to you or the baby then you’re free to fast. Unfortunately for me, there have been health complications so Ramadan hasn’t been what I thought it would be.
So how have I been making my Ramadan special?
*PREPARE FOOD FOR OTHERS
It seems like a given but when you’re 9 months pregnant, just preparing food for yourself is a test.
“Whoever gives iftaar to one who is fasting will have a reward like his, without that detracting from the reward of the fasting person in the slightest.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi
Wouldn’t it be great to get the same reward as the person who has fasted? For those of us that cannot fast, it’s the best opportunity we have to gain a great reward without the act attached to it. Iftar doesn’t have to be complicated. For most people, they just enjoy dates, fruit and salad. There are plenty of easy iftar recipes out there for you to try with your family and friends.
*SPEND YOUR TIME WISELY
Pregnancy can be very tiring, especially if like me, you suffer from extreme anaemia. But using your time wisely in Ramadan is essential for any Muslim. This becomes even more important when you’re not gaining the reward of fasting and it feels like your twiddling your thumbs waiting for baby to make their grand entrance.
Read Qur’an, make dua and help others where you can and don’t let things like TV steal this precious time from you. Unless you’re using the TV to gain beneficial knowledge! There are so many amazing series out at the moment, one of my favourites is Get To Know by Nouman Ali Khan over on Bayinnah TV. He’s doing a brief overview of all the surahs in the Quran. I’d recommend it to anyone who needs a brief reminder of the story behind each surah and to benefit from a bird’s eye view of the message contained in them.
“There are two blessings which many people lose: [They are] health and free time.” Narrated in Bukhari
*ALWAYS BE MINDFUL OF ALLAH
When you’re in a state of fasting, being mindful of Allah swt seems so much easier. You’re fasting for his sake, and his sake alone so inshaAllah, Allah is always on your mind. But when you’re not fasting, it’s easy to forget that Allah is watching, always.
“Be mindful of Allah, you will find him in front of you. Know Allah during times of prosperity, He will know you in times of adversity.” Narrated in Tirmidhi
Remember Allah when you’re cooking, cleaning, relaxing whatever you’re doing. It’s possible to turn EVERY action into ibaadah inshaAllah.
Although this isn’t the Ramadan I expected, I’m grateful to Allah for the experience.
May Allah swt allow us all to benefit from Ramadan this year, whether we’re fasting or not fasting, Ameen.
About the Author:
Christal is the founder of ChristalBlogs, a space dedicated to lifestyle, health, well being and Islam. You can find her on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook using the handle “ChristalBlogs” sharing inspirational quotes and snippets from her life.