In the first week of fasting I was asked a question by a friend who was slightly concerned about me fasting for such long hours. He talked of how not eating what he wanted would be hard for him and then having to see food as well was even worse. Not having much sleep and then getting on with the rest of the day also didn’t sound like much fun. He asked if I enjoyed all of this. And so I said that being sleep deprived and hungry wasn’t much fun. I didn’t enjoy that part.
Immediately I began to regret it. Being hungry is a part of ramadan and so surely I shouldn’t have said this. I was annoyed at myself for giving such a quick answer because I did enjoy ramadan. I do enjoy ramadan. But then I felt better because I had responded to what he asked – I don’t enjoy being hungry and sleep deprived. To that, my answer is still no. Then it got me thinking, there is much more to Ramadan than this. My Ramadan isn’t about me constantly feeling hungry and tired. that’s not how I want it to be because that isn’t how it is.
Alhamdulillah I haven’t felt very hungry and when I have been tired, I’ve been able to carry on with daily takes and ibadah. I haven’t had to stop because of it. In Ramadan, we seem to have this boost in energy that comes with it, a boost of enthusiasm and willpower. Alhamdulillah.
This all got me thinking, what are the things I love about Ramadan? There are too many to list but here are a few!
Mercy: There’s an outpour of mercy in Ramadan and personally, it’s something I feel. People are marvelled at the fact that we fast – they are curious and more often than not, they, for unknown reasons, identify with us. It’s also a time where we give more. We give more to charity, we give to friends and family – I feel it’s a month that allows us to open our hearts and be better people.
Thankful: After a long day, Allah provides us with relief – we have food on our tables. There are people who don’t have this luxury and in Ramadan, we are more aware of this than ever. We appreciate things a lot more and for this and we become more thankful. Alhamdulillah.
Unity: Ramadan is a time when Muslims fast and I love hearing people say that they are fasting. I love that feeling that people all over the world are observing Ramadan. It makes me so pleased and reminds us, once again, that religion has no entry requirements – you don’t have to be six foot tall without heels or be able to do run 5k. You just have to believe.
Patience/Self discipline: There have been times before Ramadan where I’d thought that the fast would be too long, that if I do things I’ll get tired. Come Ramadan however, I’ve managed fine and so have many many others – alhamdulillah. What’s also marvelling is when people say question your self-discipline and offer you food. ‘You can eat something small, I won’t tell anyone.’
My reply has been:
‘You may not tell anyone but I will know. Allah will know. I don’t want to cheat myself out of Allah’s pleasure.’ – Because let’s face it, the only person to lose out in that situation would be myself.
These are just a few things – there are plenty more! Hope your fasting is going well!
About the Author:
Fatima is a lifestyle blogger who blogs at www.thatdeletebutton.com – She loves rambling, reading, travelling and writing. And she doodles a lot!