Ramadan comes, you’re pumped up Alhamdulilah! Every day has been awesome and your on track with your Ramadan goals until BAMMM! – It’s time to say hello to Menstrual Island!
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Amidst the mountains of pain, bloaty town and cramp valley – you slowly feel your frustration grow as your spiritual state drops exponentially. Before you know it, you feel as if you’ve been cut off from the goodness of Ramadan!
Well at least that’s how I felt years before.
I learnt that, Allah Subhananahuu wa ta’aala by His Grace and Mercy will reward us for our patience on the fatigue we experience through the days of our menstruation. We will be rewarded if we have done all our duties and good deeds, without any loss!
“No fatigue, nor disease, nor sorrow, nor sadness, nor hurt, nor distress befalls a Muslim – even if it were the prick he receives from a thorn, but that Allah expiates some of his sins.” (Al-Bukhari)
Being on Menstrual Island should not be a barrier to achieve a higher state of spirituality. It is not a burden but a blessing mashAllah. If it weren’t for it, we wouldn’t have the joy of becoming mothers or being healthy women.
And though during these times we are forbidden to perform certain ibaadah, like fasting, praying & reading the Quran, there’s still so much we can do to boost our spirituality state!
Here’s 5 things that keep me going when I’m unable to fast during Ramadan.
Let’s be real, an excursion to the Menstrual Island is always preceded with excruciating pain, hunger pangs – and mood swings.. ahhh the mood swings – now that mashaAllah is all too real! (at least for me!)
So now is the perfect time to seek forgiveness from Allah and from the people around us for all our wrong actions during PMS. And of course there’s mistakes and sins we have committed throughout our lives.
“And seek forgiveness of Allah. Indeed Allah is forgiving and Merciful”
Ramadan is the time for repentance. It is the month of mercy. Our sins are great, but His Mercy and Forgiveness is greater. All praises to Allah who continues to forgive, as long as we continue to turn to Him, repent and ask Him for guidance.
“And those who, when they have committed fahishah (grave sins) or wronged themselves with evil, remember Allah and ask forgiveness for their sins; – and none can forgive sins but Allah – and do not persist in what (wrong) they have done, while they know.”
It does not matter that we cannot pray, we can still seek forgiveness & repent – the door of repentance is wide open. So grab this opportunity to seek forgiveness from Allah.
Connect with the Quran
Though we may not be able to touch the mushaf during our menses, we are still allowed to listen to the recitation of the Quran. Listening to the Quran, gives peace to the heart, reminds us of Allah & draws upon the mercy and blessings of Allah Subhanahu watala’ala.
“When the Quran is read, listen attentively, and fall silent, so that you may be blessed with mercy.” Quran (7:204)
Another way to connect to the Quran is by reading/listening to tafseer to help us truly embrace the message of Allah to us and to try and comprehend the magnificence of the Quran through scholars and those who are more knowledgable.
There’s an endless supply of tafseer’s on Youtube: Ustaz Nouman Ali Khan and Shaykh Abdul Nasir Jangda being my personal favourite:)
Make lots of du’aa & zikr
Being in that state of ritual impurity shouldn’t prevent you from making du’a & zikr. Nabi Muhammad said:
“When Ramadan comes, the Doors of Mercy are opened, and the doors of Hell are closed, and the devils are locked up.”
Sahīh al-Bukhāri 1899, Sahīh Muslim 1079
This hadeeth is an encouragement for us to invoke Allah Tabaraka wa Ta’aala night and day during Ramadan. Allah the Omnipotent, the Most Generous promises to fling open the doors to his expansive and ever-encompassing Mercy. Shouldn’t we be eager to take advantage of his promise? – menses or no menses?
So let’s make Allah pleased by increasing our zikr – Allah loves being remembered.
“Remember Me and I will remember you, and thank Me and do not be ungrateful to Me”.
There are two statements that are light for the tongue, heavy on the Scales and are dear to the Merciful: `Subhan-Allahi wa bihamdihi, Subhan-Allahil-Azim’ (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
If you’re feeling restless, sad or depressed – which is kind of expected when your in Misery Atoll on Menstrual Island – perhaps zikr will help calm you down.
“Behold! In the rememberance of Allah do the hearts find rest”.
Du’aa can be made any time and at any place. It is one of the most intimate ways to connect with Allah Subhanahu wata’aala. Take this opportunity to ask Allah for all the things that you ever needed – wanted – in your life, and to draw yourself closer and nearer to him.
“Invoke your Lord with humility and in secret”
Quran (Al-A’raf 7:55)
We may ask Allah through the beautiful du’aa that our prophet has taught us, or through our own unique words. Perhaps our soul is deprived from the connection with it’s creator and will find strength from making du’aa.
One du’aa we should constantly recite is the one which Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) taught Aisha (radhiAllahu ‘anha) to say in Laylatul-Qadr:
اللَّهُمَّ إنَّكَ عَفُوٌّ تُحِبُّ العَفْوَ فَاعْفُ عَنِّي
“O Allaah You are One who forgives and You love forgiveness so forgive me.”
If you’re having trouble concentrating while making zikr and du’aa, try this: take wudhu’, put on your prayer clothes, sit in the corner you’ve designated to pray and dedicate your attention, your heart, your mind and your soul to his remembrance.
If you’re looking for du’aa inspiration, check out Ramadan Daily Dua Plan: When, How and What to Ask For. So let’s make as much du’aa and zikr as we can during this special month inshaAllah!
Feed a fasting person
It was narrated that Zayd ibn Khaalid al-Juhani said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever gives iftaar to one who is fasting will have a reward like his, without that detracting from the reward of the fasting person in the slightest.”
Imagine that! Even though you can’t fast, you can still gain the reward of a fasting person by feeding them. So, don’t underestimate cooking iftaar for your husband & family who’s fasting! Cook extra portions and share with your neighbours and friends. Invite others over! There’s so much goodness waiting for you even though you can’t fast, MashaAllah!
Give Sedeqah, Help others & Spread the love!
Allah has blessed us with countless of blessings, so let’s spread those blessings in the blessed month of Ramadan by lending our time for a good cause.
We can also help others by being more mindful to the needs of the people close to us. With the little extra time we have, we could offer to babysit our sister’s children while she performs taraweeh, help our parents or visit the sick. Put a smile on the face of the people around you.
If you’re busy and have little opportunity to give your time – then share your wealth with those in need and spend in the path of Allah like supporting Islamic student programs, inshaAllah.
“Whoever relieves the hardship of a believer in this world, Allah will relieve his hardship on the Day of Resurrection. Whoever helps ease someone in difficulty, Allah will make it easy for him in this world and in the Hereafter.”
Sahih Muslim 2699
And don’t forget to use the extra time and energy you have to share the joys of Ramadan and Eid with your Muslim and non-Muslim friends, peers and neighbours! Let’s spread love & light. Invite colleague from work for an iftaar or take time to make special cookies or gift bags for your friends. Share this blessed moment with everyone around us!
So there’s so much that we can do to reap benefits and blessings of Ramadan even when it’s time to visit Menstruation Island! 🙂 Don’t let your spiritual state drop – keep it it high with these 5 amaal, inshaAllah!
What keeps you going when you get your menses? Please do share!