“This Ramadan, I will improve my prayers. I will ensure I pray on time, at the top of the hour. I will fast without complaining, and prepare simple meals for the Iftar, which include ingredients from the Qur’an.
“This Ramadan, I will keep my patience throughout the day, even if the kids break out in squabbles. Besides that, I’ll be working on meals for my children who are not fasting, and their snacks in between.
“This Ramadan, I will make sure my husband gets a good meal so that he will last the whole day without too much hardship.
The house will be spick and span to honor the month, no food on the floor, dirty laundry always cleaned by the end of the day. No room will be left unturned.
If there’s food on the floor, I will clean it up without complaining, if there’s a mess in the living room, I will put the toys away without arguing, and if fights break out, I will settle them patiently.
I definitely plan to complete reading the Qur’an before the 30 days are up, and learn 30 new du’as to boot.
I will also be helping out at the Masjid, and doing I’tikaf, along with my five children, including the nursing baby. Besides this, I’m enrolling in that online course for Tajweed and Hadith, and I hope to break my habits of procrastination and brush up on perfectionism.
I have decided to cut out all distractions and concentrate solely on Ibadah. I hope to complete my Tarawih every day and wake up for tahajjud prayers in the morning.
With the kids, I’m planning three activities per day, including arts and crafts six times a week, and hope to teach them good habits while I am at it.
I plan to drive a little more patiently, shop a little more diligently, and to be more creative in keeping up with the chores.
I plan to visit family and friends four times a week, and have guests over three times a week.
On these days, I will have to plan for larger meals. The little ones will need some attention with their tantrums.
But never mind all that, this is my ultimate Ramadan wish list and I will stick to it.”
Ramadan Is Here
Does that sound familiar? Or a little too idealistic? Ramadan is a wonderful month for a spiritual upgrade and it is amazing at how much we rush to reap the benefits of the Holy Month.
And while everyone is putting up their super-charged level of patience or cleanliness or ambition for change, we also have to be realistic with our selves.
As moms, we often know that we run out of steam towards the afternoons, closing in on evenings. Little tantrums can set us off.
The apple wasn’t slinked correctly, or “so-and-so took my robot and broke it.” The little things add up. And while rushing the older ones to complete their tasks, the baby wants to be carried, and dinner is still in the fridge, uncooked.
To make things worse, it is taxing when there’s a two year old who sees you as monkey bars. But that’s the reality of it. Ramadan, with fasting and keeping calm on the menu, can seem a little more daunting than just the month of blessings.
Everyone wants to make the best of it, to go over the top, and to recharge one’s faith.
But let’s be realistic, there are some things that we may do, and there are other things that may be out of our reach. But this doesn’t mean we should forgo our Ramadan.
We just need to know our own capacities and work with the resources we have. Here are a few pointers to make the best out of the holy month without buckling within the first ten days.
Make a Plan
Sit down on a daily basis, and take time to plan. It’s no point going into Ramadan in a frenzy and then burning out on the 4th day. There’s also no point rushing into Ramadan with a mental list and getting confused and frustrated because you can’t fulfill your goals.
Write your plans out. What can you do for sure? What do you wish to do? And even list out things that you would like to do but probably can’t. What good habits do you want to cultivate – be realistic, so you have more of a chance to succeed than to fail?
What bad habits do you wish to eliminate? Write them down. Once you have a list, try to visualize the days during the month and to which points you would be able to commit to.
As you go through the month, ticking off those that you have accomplished will be highly satisfying and rewarding in itself.