Monday, September 25, 2006

Ho Hum...

Ramadan in this town sucks. Ramadan in my house is nice, but draining since I feel this bizarre obligation to cook too much for iftar. I have thought about going to a nearby town to catch some lessons or taraweh every so often, but would want DH to come with me. I have talked to DH about it, he is too busy with his work and his health isn't good... He doesn't worry about it.

I have started to come to the conclusion that DH's problems are verging on a disability. No, really. I don't know when it happened, but his ability to work or help around the house is going down. More and more I have to do the things for his job with him. More and more he is behind on the paperwork because he is tired. How do you balance your responsibilities in a situation like this? He is the man of the house, and Alhamdulilah he has a job and masha'Allah he is still able to work. But, I know that more and more things are swinging towards me doing everything... But doing everything his way is sometimes a big strain... I mean, if it's my responsibility now just let me get it done my way. Sheesh. But, I think many marriages are this way in truth. DH will tell you that if you are helping someone then just shut it and try to do what they want, that way you are really helping them. I guess this is a good point, but hard to put into practice. Especially because I am a fly by the seat of your pants artsy type and DH is a triple backup for safety engineer type.


In other news... Fasting for me just commenced today (when it really started Sat here). The baby was having a big nurseathon going for the past few days, but with some serious fluid intake and hilba (fenugreek) the milk supply seems to have caught up, masha'Allah. Sooo, I am fasting today. I will fast every other day, insha'Allah. I think the cumulative effect is what has caused me problems while nursing and fasting in the past... That and my bad habit of not drinking enough water. We will see. I wouldn't be so gung ho about it if I hadn't missed almost every Ramadan since I got married due to pregnancy/nursing. I have some serious making up to do already, better to cut it down if I can, insha'Allah. I think I will be like a sister I knew while teaching after I am done having kids. She just fasted two days every week to make up for all the fasting she had missed. She never bothered to really figure out exact numbers, she was just shooting to do as much as she could. I like the idea.

So, for other nursing moms out there... If you are fasting, please do your best to drink as much as you normally would during the entire day in the evenings. I have been drinking from a nalgene bottle so I can watch myself and know I am drinking enough. Sadly, I am finding myself in the bathroom more than usual, which must mean that I am normally nowhere near drinking enough. As for the food part... No worries for nursing mom's there because you have to be seriously malnourished before it affects your milk. Check out The Imam's Daughter on my sidebar for more info about fasting and pregnancy/nursing.


Anonymous said...

Ramadan Kareem!

I am pleased that you are doing your best to get into the swing of things. Enshahallah, you will find Ramadan through all your actions, even in your small town.

It's true what you say about liquid intake being the key. One more point about that: Coffee and tea don't hydrate you like water or juice. If you drink either caffeinated beverage for suhour, don't think that it counts as getting one cup full of liquid. Be careful! :)

Anonymous said...

Ramadan Mubarak, sister!

Alhamdulileh, you are able to fast this soooo makes getting into the groove of increased iman engrained in your body.

I had one double-take: the sister you know never bothered to calculate the days she needed to make up?? Wouldn't that worry you? I think you need to know the exact number of days that you need to make up for fard fasting.

Also, are you aware that some scholars (I can post fatwa, if you like) are of the opinion that you don't have to make up missed fasts during Ramadan (if you have a valid excuse for missing them in the first place, of course)?

There are basically 3 scholarly opinions on this (just in case you don't know this already):

1. Must make up missed fasts during Ramadan

2. Must make up missed fasts and feed a poor person for each day missed

3. Do not have to make up missed fasts during Ramadan, but must feed poor person for each day

Now, feeding the poor gets into another category. It has to be a certain quantity, and some scholars say that a monetary amount to pay for sadaqa will suffice.

Some scholars who say that you do not have to make up the fasts say so because it can be a hardship to make up the missed fasts for people in your situation, pregnant/nursing mothers who find themselves validly unable to fast, for example, who keep racking up the missed fasts.

Wallahu alim. Let me know if you want those fatwa.

I hope this information may be of some benefit, insha'allah. If you already knew it, maybe somebody else will benefit. :)

Again, Ramadan Mubarak! May Allah accept your fasts and make them easy for you, and may He fill your heart with iman and taqwa! Ameen.

UmmLayla said...

Yeah anon. I have heard the fatwa you are talking about. I think the way I have understood it is that you can pay the charity if you think you are getting into a situation where you will never be able to make up the fasting, or you are afraid of that. And the sister I knew who was fasting every week knew that she would be exceeding the number of days she had missed, so she just never got exact with when she had done that. Which I can see because it would take me something like two years (assuming you would miss some weeks because of menses) to make up all my time that way... And I can't see tallying all that.

Actually, I will probably end up paying to feed people and then having the intention to make up the days as I can because I have so much to make up. I just have no income right now and hate to ask DH to shell out the money to do it. Insha'Allah I will though because I know I have LOTS to make up.

HA, you are soooo right about caffeine. I try to limit it during Ramadan for that reason. Actually things like coffee can actually dehydrate you... Talk about a bizarre paradoxical thought. Thanks for the well wishes;)

Anonymous said...

Ramadhan mubarak!

I also did a double take when i read your post.

As far as i am aware feeding mothers are totally exempt from fasting. Allah is an All Loving Being and would not expect you to fast and feed, the demands are too much and can affect both you and your baby.

Allah does not require excessive hardship. Please, please look in your Qur'an and hadith and see that you are exempt, such as an ill person is also exempt.

You are requested to feed poor people in return. I paid £60 when i was feeding and pregnant.

If you cannot fast, at least you can pray. If Allah has granted you an exemption you should not disobey His dispensation.

Aeryn said...

Ramadan Mubarak Sister,

I am a new Muslim, this is my first Ramadan, and I have a one year old daughter who I was breastfeeding, and I was told that if I was still breastfeeding her when Ramadan came that I was not supposed to fast. So I would look it up, since I am new I am not sure where you could find reliable information about that. Although the reason I stopped breastfeeding was a medical issue and because of that I am not able to fast, and so I am trying to find other ways to get a lot out of my first Ramadan, somedays it really feels like I am missing out on a big part of it. Inshallah all is well with your family and you are enjoying a blessed Ramadan,


Anonymous said...

Actually, sister, we are required to fast while pregnant or breastfeeding - UNLESS you have a valid medical concern for yourself or your child.

Please see for some good information on the subject.

Salaamu alaikum!

Am said...

Assalaamu alaykum,

I'm fasting and nursing a 1-year-old boob addict. The first day was awful but today is fine. If I notice any milk supply issues I will go to every other day or stop for this year.

Everything I have read says to fast unless it is an undue hardship to you or the baby. I did not fast last year because I was still establishing milk supply with a month-old baby. I don't think it's wise for moms of babies who are very young to fast, but everyone is different. Some women see a major hit to supply right away and I think others can be OK.

Anyway, it is hard to get back in the swing of things and I sit at suhoor downing glass after glass of water until I feel a bit ill, but it's about 3 pm now and I think the next 4 hours will sail by inshaAllah. Just in case they don't, I will go shopping for my little one's winter coat. LOL.

Mona UmIbrahim said...

Ramadan Mubarak UmmLayla :)
Please just take it one day at a time. My father told me today that you can pay fidya instead of making up the fasts when you KNOW that you will not be able to make them up withing the coming year before the next ramadan. For example if one is pregnant in first trimester and can't fast, and next ramadan she will have a newborn to nurse, then she can pay fidya for this ramadan.

Something else i forgot to mention in my article was the 'other kids' factor. If this is your first pregnancy or first child then perhaps it will be ok because you can rest anytime you need to.

But a mother with other kids, like mashaAllah you have, to run around after and take care of, you don't have that luxury of taking a nap, taking it easy, resting often, etc.

May Allah make things easy on you and bless you and your family.

Anonymous said...

as salamu aleykum,

I really like yor blog masha Allah.

Regarding fasting,
you CAN fast while pregnant or breast feeding if you and your baby won't hurt, but it is not fard if you feel it will be too big of a strain. And exactly what "too big of a strain" is can of course be an issue. I'm sure every mother and faithful muslima can feel what she can do and cannot do.

//Imaan from Sweden

UmmBadier said...

Asalamu Walaikum,
Please keep really good medical records for the hub. This is very important if he has some vague/undiagnosed condition and you try to file for disability. You are in my prayers sister.
Asalamu Walaikum

ummali said...

As salaam alaykum,

I'm fasting and nursing a ten month old. So far, so good once I started making sure I was drinking more liquid and having suhoor.

When shahr ramadhan came and I had a 3 month old, I fasted every other day. I've always had an abundant milk supply though, so every other day worked fine. Do what's best for your soul and your child.

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