Waz Day 29 – Gratitude
I have been thinking about my final Ramadan Reflection blog the last couple of days… I cannot believe this is my last one? WOW.
My mom used to always say that Ramadan is a mubarak time; TTG has always said it is her favorite time and like I said in my first blog, it has formerly been a time of mixed feelings and emotions. And right now, at the edges of the arc of this month I see what they mean. The hope that this holy month has instilled in me, alhamdidullah; the sadness I feel that it is ending; and looking forward to another one, inshallah.
In all of this, I feel like TTG’s blog from yesterday and gratitude is the word that sums so much of this experience up for me…
We started this blog and I had NO idea who would read this… and honestly, I don’t really know who is. But I do know that I check out the stats each day and people actually do read this. You are part of my community, my ummah and I am grateful to you.
At work, I told one of the security guards that I was fasting for Ramadan and whenever I see her she apologizes for chewing in front of me, ha! She even notices the days that I am not, with a coffee in hand… and really, I am grateful to her. I am grateful that she cares.
The sad, sad and disgusting state of Islamophobia and Racism in the world has been on the forefront of my mind and very clear to all… from the Rohingya community, to Toronto, to the Sikh temple shooting, to the variety of FUCKED UP billboards in NY… I just don’t understand. It’s hard to think positively in those moments… in fact, I read about the islamophobic ads (http://gothamist.com/2012/08/16/islamophobic_billboard_at_metro-nor.php) and had no words and all I could think for a minute was something I usually hear my dad mutter to himself when he is fuming and angry:
la hawla wa laa quwwata illah billah
there is no might nor power except by Allah
And I was freed up from my sadness.
What Allah did make me present to was my community – I posted the link onto Facebook and realized, Wow, alahamdidullah, I have such amazing, awesome, radical people in my life. I am eternally grateful to them.
I am grateful for Terna. I don’t thank Allah enough for bringing her into my life. Most of the time people ask how we met and I tell them we met at GLSEN and then our work around Interrupting Islamophobia and then of course, Coming Out Muslim. The story sort of gets fast forwarded and I don’t get to say much more.
What I’d like to say is that our meeting was God-given. We didn’t JUST meet at work – we were interviewing for the SAME job and then got hired for the SAME job. Under normal circumstances, she would be my competitor and only one of us could get the gig – however it was God’s doing to bring us together. I immediately felt known and could share things that I never share with any one else. And, she was my heart’s sustainer when I was going through major transitions.
I am grateful for TTG because she is the vessel through which Allah has given me my proudest success: Coming Out Muslim. I would never, ever, EVER put myself out there in such a public and vulnerable way and yet, it never really dawned on me until just about October 2011, before our first show. I think TTG even asked me if I was ready for this and I said yes because I was in this adventure alongside of her.
And the truth is, I don’t see TTG much in-person right now and we haven’t had a whole lot of phone time either and yet she is present to me each day of this month as we share Ramadan this way together – virtually and spiritually.
If you are reading this right now, yes YOU, whoever you are – I am grateful for you.
TTG Day 30 – Ramadan Ends & Love Continues
that you heat for your bath.It takes messages between the fire
and your skin. It lets them meet,
and it clean you!
Very few can sit down
in the middle of the fire itself
like a salamander or Abraham.
We need intermediaries.
A feeling of fullness comes,
but usually it takes some bread
to bring it.
Beauty surrounds us,
but usually we need to be walking in a garden to know it.
The body itself is a screen
to shield and partially reveal
the light that’s blazing
inside your presence.
Water, stories, the body,
all the things we do, are mediums
that hide and show what’s hidden.
and enjoy this being washed
with a secret we sometimes know,
and then not.
Eid Mubarak to you all!!
Please accept my thanks for your eyes and your hearts through this blog during this last month. Ramadan went out with the arrival of sunset (for some folks that was tonight, for others it will be tomorrow or Monday). Its final gift is this night, one of the most blessed on the entire year. In it we are encouraged to ask for our heart’s deepest longings for ourselves, for those we love, for humanity. Dear readers, you are in my prayers this night.
I looked over the intention I set at the beginning of the month. Mainly I wanted to “do everything for love,” and to “live in the real state of my soul.” I’m not sure how I’ve stacked up at the end of it but I realize that these are not intentions only for this month. They are intentions for my life. This is always the challenge of Ramadan: how to remember what you’ve reawakened to everyday beyond the month.
I especially want to thank Wazina, my friend and comadre. Waz, you are a lover. I wish for you peace of heart and spirit, unmitigated joy, unmitigated love with your family and all who are connected with you through bonds of love and blood, past, present and yet to come. I admire you more than you know. I especially admire your courage and generosity. I am grateful that Allah has brought us together, has bound us in our earthly story. I want you know that phone time or not, in-person or not, I got you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I also want to thank everyone who supports us, our partners and friends, our communities. May Allah increase us in nearness to one another.
Thank Allah, thank Allah, thank Allah! May we abide in wonder! May we abide in divine remembrance! May we drink from the endlessly flowing cup of Love! May we live for Love! May we die before we die for Love! May we become transparent treasure chests and honor the treasure in one another! Ya Hayy, Ya Hayy, Ya Hayy!
Eid Mubarak Y’all!
Eid Mubarak to all!
TTG and I have not been blogging because of work and life winds that have carried us away a bit but I do know that the the 30 mubarak days of Ramadan, reflection, prayers and insights have enveloped me with strength through now.
We are going to ready to write and share again… On generative themes that we’d love to hear from you. So if you’d like, please comment or email is at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Off for now to help my mom prepare for guests!
PS: two photos from yesterday – one with my sister on the way to masjid and one with my mom 🙂