Published in  
Matters of the Heart
February 29, 2024

From A Mother to Another: Making The Most of Ramadan

🌙 Calling all mothers! Are you feeling the stress of approaching Ramadan? You're not alone! As a mother of three, I completely get it. But let's turn those feelings around! Check out these quick tips to prep for the blessed month InshaAllah.

As a mother, you most probably are approaching Ramadan with apprehension and dread. As a mother of three young ones myself, I can understand how those buried feelings can remove from us the ability to also feel the excitement, eagerness, and joy that we once used to feel when the blessed month was around the corner.

It's the apprehension of how you're going to juggle it all that gets one. Right? The home, the cooking, the endless cleaning and laundry, the kids of all ages, and on top of that make time for extra worship when you just about manage to fit in your fardh (obligatory) actions these days. That too whilst a toddler climbs on your back and proceeds to pull your hijab off in sujood. Or a sibling conflict between the kids is getting heated in the background. I get it. It's nerve-wracking.

And then you have the dread. What if Aunt Flo is delayed and she comes right at the end of Ramadan *just* when you are feeling all the feels and want to enjoy some nightly Qiyam and maybe, maybe even attempt to catch an odd night where you stay awake doing ibadah till dawn with a new kind of resolve because you know, it's so close to the finish line!

And if you're a pregnant or breastfeeding mother, then that's an entirely different ballgame in itself. It is just uncertain how you're going to feel physically whilst trying to fast so they don't stack up for you after Ramadan. And did I even mention the lack of existing sleep due to nursing? 

It's not easy as a mother to get in the zone without all these thoughts coming at us. Just the thought of all these things can feel exhausting. But today, from one mother to another, here are a few things you can do to get yourself ready to welcome this blessed month regardless of these natural feelings we have.

1. Make A Small Ramadan Basket 

This basket box doesn't really have to be fancy or aesthetic. No, it doesn't have to contain items that all match in colour and design. What it does need though, is to be portable enough that you can carry it around the house. The idea is to have everything that you might potentially need, all in one place, ready for you to just reach out and grab from.

  • You're rocking the baby to sleep? Great! Pull out your Qur’an from the small basket and begin to read. 
  • In the kitchen, and prepping a light iftar? Take out the tasbeeh counter and keep it on your finger as you stir the pot and make adhkar. 
  • The kids are in bed and you've finally got some time to yourself? Your notebook, your dua list, mushaf, and other books are all there in one place. Spend just 5 minutes on each thing. 
  • Write some short reflections, make 5 minutes of dua, read 5 pages from your mushaf, and make your Witr dua just 5 minutes longer. 

Keeping everything you need in one place will make it easy for you to reach out for them when small pockets of time pop up in your day. You save time to actually engage in what you want instead of having to go find what you are looking for only when you get free, just to realize that most of the time went into just finding what you wanted. 

2. Know Your Ramadan Focus In Advance

It is great to have several goals for this month. It's encouraged to improve yourself in all areas of ibadah but if you know your busy reality, then also find something to focus on so that when things get busier than usual, you are still on top of that one area because you made consistent, achievable targets to reach that goal and were focused on it. 

This goal could simply be: 

  • To pray all your sunnah rawatib after salah. 
  • To pray tarawih every night whenever it is the kids finally settle down. 
  • To read one page of the Quran with its meaning and tafseer.
  • To listen to one lecture from an ongoing Ramadan class etc.

Make your focus on what is attainable and realistic but don't shy away from being ambitious also if you can because this is the month to strive!

3. Get The Kids Involved

Discuss with the kids the game plan for Ramadan and get them involved from the start. If your kids are 5 years or older, you can sit down and talk about what you want to achieve in the blessed month with them. You can tell them that you will be reciting more Quran; memorizing a particular Surah. You can also discuss what you want to do together. 

My children and I are going to focus on Qur'an journaling this Ramadan. We've already started to get into a rhythm. It revolves around reflecting and listening to explanations on specific Surahs (we've begun with Surah al-Kahf) and writing down or drawing our reflections. With the 4 stories in Surah al-Kahf being so visual, my children were able to illustrate their thoughts with simply some crayons and a drawing book!

4. Learn About Your Cycle

if you have an on-the-dot cycle then you can prepare in advance what dates those coincide with and then jot down how you want to spend that time. If they are irregular then you might not be able to know when it will come, but remind yourself of the ibadat you can engage in. Adkhar, reciting the Qur'an, calling upon Allah in dua, giving or facilitating sadaqah, feeding a fasting person, the list is endless! There is so much that we can do. 

5. Mindset Change: Your Whole Day Can Be An Ibadah! 

Yes! Your rocking of your baby, your cooking in the kitchen, your picking and dropping the kids to school - ALL of this can become an act of worship that continuously gets you rewarded if you just set right your intentions when setting out to do what you have to do. 

  • When dropping off and picking up the kids from school. think about how you are facilitating a good education, preparing them for the world, and most importantly knowing about Allah! 
  • When nursing your baby think about how you are nourishing them so that they can grow up to be a strong believer. 
  • When cooking a meal for the family, remember how you are filling many hungry tummies for the same reason and will be rewarded for the iftar your husband and family eat because it was made by your generous and loving hands.

As Ramadan approaches, let us fill our hearts with trust in Allah, that if we have a sincere intention, if we do our bit - write down our goals, prepare to do that bit more with our busy schedules, ensure our family is on the same boat - that InshaAllah the month of Ramadan will be fruitful and be a means to uplift our souls and revive our dead hearts.

Remember the purpose of Ramadan is not to become busy bodies that burn out. Rather, it is to create long-lasting, sustainable habits whilst also going that extra mile because the rewards are multiplied and the gates of Jannah are flung open.

Sometimes, just focusing on our relationship with our children, developing our akhlaq (manners) towards them, making amends as a friend, or investing in your marriage can all become acts of ibadah if we do them with the purpose of attaining taqwa (God-consciousness) and Allah’s pleasure. 

If you are a mother filled with anxiety and dread, then turn those feelings into hope and joy because you are about to welcome the most beautiful guest! Clean your house, make your baskets, outsource what you can, get your family together to talk about it, and write down your goals. I am certain the spark will be lit and you will begin to feel that much better about it all inshaAllah 

May Allah allow us to reach Ramadan and may it be are best one yet. Ameen ❤️

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