The sun is high and it glares down on me, baking me with its heat. Who in the right mind will go to beach at this hour? Me. Of course, me. I throw the rocks with as much force as I can and watch as it splashes and vanishes in the raging waves. I throw one after the other until I could not find anymore rocks near me. Ughhhh! I kick the sand in frustration. All the energy is drained out of me. What is wrong with me? It has only been two weeks since you left and it is as if I have totally forgotten all that you have taught me. I look directly at the sun and its light blinds me. I fight to keep my eyes open. Might as well be blind. I thought. What’s the use of having these eyes if your heart is blind?
“It is not the eyes that are blind, but the hearts.” Qur’an 22:46
I miss you.
You would visit me, once each year. During your visit last year, I took you for granted and acted as if you were not even there. I regretted those moments and have longed for you since. I remember the time when they told me you were coming again to see me this year, my heart jumped in excitement. I counted the days, the hours, the minutes to the day of your arrival. I cherished every moment I had with you. Each and every second was precious. You stayed with me and trained me to recite more of the Qur’an, to go to the mosque more often, to improve my akhlaq, to be kind, to be gentle, to simply.. do more good deeds. You have been such a wonderful friend. As the days drew close to a time when you had to leave again, I cried and my heart ached at the thought, wishing that you would never leave. I have never recited this much Qur’an. I have never went to the mosque this often. I was never this kind or gentle before.
I look up to the sky, perhaps the tear that threatens to fall will evaporate in this heat. Do not start. I warn myself. I only needed the sun to work with me to prevent myself from tearing up and breaking into a million pieces but just at that moment, the clouds seems to find its way around the sun and block its light. A crystal tear escapes. And another. And another. And I do not know how to stop. Ramadhan, I miss you. I really do.
Two weeks into Syawwal and I feel like I no longer recognise the girl I see in the mirror. Where has the recitation of the Qur’an gone to? Being kind and gentle? Going to the mosque? Racing to do good deeds? Rather I find myself indulging in the feast of food, easily losing my patience, rarely reciting the Qur’an. Gone. Gone. Gone. It’s all gone. I bury my face in my hands. Please forgive me, ya Rabb. Ramadhan was a gift to me, to all of us. An opportunity for me to train my nafs for the battle in the next 11 months. And two weeks of these battle, I think I have already lost. Or did I even stand up for the fight?
“O you who have believed, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous,” (Qur’an 2: 183)
Ramadhan was sent to us in hope that we come out of it with Taqwa. To be conscious of Allah, to be mindful in our speech and actions but I am far from that. I hope it is not too late to turn back to You and seek forgiveness for my negligence in my ‘ibadah. Ramadhan, I know you are no longer here with me but you will always live in my heart. I will carry your spirit anywhere I go and I will fight my nafs, just like how you taught me to.
The waves roared as if in agreement to my thoughts. Silently, I pray for all the muslims out there. May we all be steadfast in our ‘ibadah. Allahumma Ameen.