It is not premature for me to write this as I need to start planning now in order to be ready for what comes next. All the buzz and the excitement of Ramadan is over and now what? I’ve got my kids’ attention and they loved living their deen this month. I’m afraid though, that this momentum may dissipate soon after the Eid festivities end! I’ve got to concoct a way to keep it alive and keep it reverberating in our beings. I’m afraid that once the nightly Taraweeh prayers end and the Eid Mubaraks are exchanged, we may slide back into our Pre Ramadan routines. If this Ramadan needs to matter, then a change needs to be made – a change that we, along with others, can perceive.
With this end in mind, here is a partial list of what I plan on doing to keep the spirit of Ramadan going for as long as I can at home.
Once my son asked me, “why do we only sight the moon for Ramadan and the two Eids?” Well, “because we are lazy”, is the true answer. Honestly, it should be a monthly event that we participate in and fulfill this fard kifaya. Perhaps now is the time to me to go beyond Ramadan and sight the Hilal with the family so that my children can anchor themselves in more than just one calendar.
Empty out the bank:
One of the wonderful activities my children and I get together to do this month is emptying out our piggy banks! We empty out all our change together and after counting it and my husband matching it, we distribute the money to several chosen organizations. Each child gets to pick one organization that they want to donate to and the money is equally divided between them and sadaqa gets sent in. I feel this activity can take place beyond Ramadan, especially now that my kids are older and do have some substance in their piggy banks. Even if not every month, but a bi-monthly sadaqa collection gathering can take place, inshaAllah.
More masjid time:
My boys are getting older and it’s time for them to make their masjid their own. They have to feel comfortable in it and go there for beyond the Jumah prayers. Ramadan brings us into the masjid so much more and I hope to keep these activities rolling post Ramdan as well, inshaAllah.
Electronic free time:
It may seem paradoxical that I write this while using electronics, but my goal is to set limits on the time we spend on electronic devices on a daily basis. Though our home is TV free and video game free, electronic time via iPhone, iPad, iMac, iwhatever finds its way sneakily into our lives. During Ramadan my kids go completely off and get rewarded at the end of the month for it, perhaps I can pull some of those same ideas and get them to limit their time even more outside of Ramadan.
Cutting on the calories:
As Ramadan advances, our dinner menu shrinks. We all eat less, shop less and need less. It’s a beautiful reminder of how much we actually need. Maybe post Ramadan we can continue on a smaller portion path and really watch what we eat and increase the amount of water we drink!
Add one act of ibadah/worship to our day:
Ramadan is a month which manages to afford us Barakah in our time. We pray more, supplicate more, worship more- but somehow it all declines post Ramadan. This year each of us will pick one act of worship that is easiest for us to do through the year and continue it, inshaAllah.
Since the most beloved acts are the ones done with consistency, inshaAllah, we move forward with the intention that we can keep the good actions going through the year- consistently. I’m sure you all have plenty of great suggestions on how to hang on to the blessings of Ramadan, and I invite you all to please share. I would love to learn and engage in them.
I wish you all a very blessed Eid Mubarak! May all our good done this month be increased multifold and accounted in our favor and may any and all errors this month be forgiven and wiped by the mercy of the most Merciful- Ameen.
Wa bi wasilati Muhammad salAllahu Alayhi wa Sallam.