My mother and Ramadan


There is Mother’s Day, the memory of my mother’s passing, and the month of Ramadan. Writes Sama Hassan

It was my mother and it was Ramadan. My mother was gone and Ramadan remained. Memories and conversations spread, and this distinguished month was associated with notes and rituals with my mother. In days gone by, there was nothing more beautiful than her, and in days you became tasteless, as if you were telling the years that there is no life after my mother, and that today you fast Ramadan without rituals. In your heart, soul, and every cell of your body, and it left with you until you became this age.

How can you forget your mother when she receives the first days of Ramadan, so she spreads the oilcloth and asks you to wash it and then spread it “in the eye of the sun” so that it dries quickly, and the cells of your nose pick up the musty smell of food leftovers, or as if he insists on keeping the memory of a missed Ramadan, as if he wants to convey a message to you That he settles safely in the house of a master and skilled in cooking.

For my mother, there were stories and theories that do not need discussion about Ramadan, as she confirms that eating bananas at suhoor is in the heart, and she says about the stomach that it is the heart, and thus she always advises us to eat it always at suhoor, and she says that drinking plenty of water does not work, but we have to eat Qamar al-Din soaked on the pre-dawn meal, and we should not start our iftar with water so as not to feel full. Thus, my mother’s impromptu advice became theories studied, and from which scientists and nutritionists may have drawn their advice and the conclusion of their studies.

My mother used to keep the leftovers of the missed food so that it would be food for the little ones who were unable to fast, so she would serve it to them throughout the day, as she was very careful not to throw it or toss it to the birds, but it should fall into the hearts of the children because she saw that they were wasted in Ramadan, so there is no one He cares about feeding them, or perhaps they ate light food, “natosha,” according to her beautiful expressions.

My mother has another theory, as she puts a meal in front of each child when the time for iftar approaches, and this meal is from the main dish, so that when the Maghrib call to prayer rises, the children feel full, so they do not cry or fornicate or stir up riots, and they occupy themselves in a corner of the house playing, while the adults accept They eat their breakfast without being disturbed, and they exchange conversations and news among themselves.

The ritual of stuffing Qatayef has special memories for my mother, and we used to race to put the empty pill in her hands and race to complete its closure, as she closes it to the middle, and we race to stack it in the tray, but we never liked Qatayef stuffed with nuts, which only my father and grandfather, may Allah have mercy on them, loved. So was my mother, and we used to race without her knowledge to hide raw and empty grains and devour them by stealth and find pleasure in that.

To this day, I still hide raw grains of Qatayef and devour them by stealth, as I put them on a far shelf in my kitchen, as if I am waiting for my mother, who has been sleeping in her last shelter thirteen years ago, to see me, and who meant everything to me. Holidays and occasions mean life to me, and when my mother passed away in March, all the rituals left with her, and there was no longer any joy in waiting for anything for me, as if all days were the same, even as I exchanged congratulations with those around me, and I am preparing with my children to receive the holy month, but there is a missing link It is painful, especially since this year witnesses three occasions that meet at the end of the month of March. There is Mother’s Day, the memory of my mother’s passing, and the month of Ramadan. And I sat her next to the jug of juice and the basket of bread so that she would distribute the good to us, not knowing that it was all good.

Translated from Arabic and republished from Al-Ayyam

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