“Oh no, not again!” Aaliya shook her head left and right. She couldn’t believe her eyes. Twenty first Ramadan is going to be the day when her menses should start.
It has been three years in a row that she has missed the last ten days of Ramadan. She felt like crying. Allah’s powerful words in Surah Al-Qadr flashes before her.
Allah Almighty says:
Truly We sent it down on the Night of Power. And what will convey to you what the Night of Power is? The Night of Power is better than a thousand months. In it the angels and the Spirit descend by their Lord’s authority with every ordinance. It is Peace – until the coming of the dawn. (97 : 1-5)
The Grand Night. The Night of Power. Better than a thousand months. And she will miss it again, this year. She couldn’t contain her tears. She wanted so much to be able to bow to her Creator, asking for forgiveness, pleading for His Mercy and begging so that her repentance is accepted on those nights.
Prophet Muhammad had mentioned in a hadith narrated by Al-Bukhari that:
Whoever spends the night of Laylat al-Qadr in prayer out of faith and in hope of reward, his previous sins will be forgiven.
But, Aaliya knew that this is the decree, that Allah, the All-Knower has bestowed upon all women. She knew she had to accept it because He knows what is best for His creations.
Aaliya reflected on an incident where Lady Aisha was found crying when she discovered that she had her menses just before she reached Makkah to perform her pilgrimage.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) entered upon ‘Aisha when she was with him during the Farewell Pilgrimage. She had entered ihraam for ‘Umrah, then her period came before she reached Makkah. He entered upon her and found her weeping. He asked:
Why are you weeping?
And she told him that her period had come. He told her:
This is something which Allah has decreed for the daughters of Adam. (Al Bukhari)
What to Do?
Aaliya took a deep breath and decided to look for other ways for her to spend those last ten days of Ramadan besides fasting and prayers. She had gone through this many times, and she knew exactly what to do.
She listed down all her dua for dua is an act of worship. And the best dua that she can recite has been explained by Prophet Muhammad when Aisha asked him:
If I know which night is Laylat al-Qadr, what should I say on that night?
Say: Allahumma innaka ‘afuwwun tuhibb al-‘afwa fa’afu ‘anni (O Allah, You are forgiving and You love forgiveness, so forgive me). (At-Tirmidhi)
Then, she would make lots of dhikr such as saying Subhan-Allah, La ilaha illa-Allah, al-Hamdulillah, Subhan-Allah wa’l-hamdulillah, wa la ilaha illa-Allah, wa Allahu akbar (Glory be to Allah, praise be to Allah, there is no god but Allah and Allah is Most Great); Subhaan Allah wa bi hamdihi, subhaan Allah al-‘Adheem (Glory and praise be to Allah, glory be to Allah the Almighty) and Astaghfir-Allah (I ask Allah for forgiveness).
And not only that, she can also listen to or recite the Quran from her memory to enable her to gain the rewards from it, enter into i’tikaf at home in her place of prayer, send blessings upon the Prophet, read books of beneficial knowledge, and listen to inspiring or educational Islamic talks and lessons and also increase her acts of charity.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) was the most generous of people and he was at his most generous during Ramadan. (Al-Bukhari)
In the end, Aaliya took comfort in knowing that any virtuous acts shall be compensated by Allah as in the hadith:
O people! A great and blessed month is coming upon you, a month containing a night better than a thousand months. Allah has made fasting in its days an obligation and observing prayer in its nights a voluntary act. Anyone who seeks nearness to Allah in this month through any virtuous act will be like one who carried out a religious obligation at another time, and anyone who performs an obligatory act of worship in this month will be like one who performed seventy such acts at another time. It is the month of patience, and the reward for patience is Paradise. (Ibn Khuzaymah)
“Inshallah!” Aaliya said to herself. “I will do my best within my limitation” and she smiled whilst looking at her plan of action for her last ten days of Ramadan.