I am going to miss this. Ramadan. I was shy in the beginning. Not wanting to tell people it was my first. But when I looked out into the horizon and caught a glimpse of the crescent moon I couldn’t help but want to savor that moment. I still see it. The fog rolling in, the oranges and peaches of the sky. I can still feel how my heart expanded that first night, the first early rise for suhoor. I made eggs and veggie sausages and toasted some spelt muffins for my friend and I. I felt like a mother. Like my mother when she used to wake up before dawn to make breakfast for my father. I woke up as well. This is what daughters of bakers do.
I’ve been wanting to write words on long walks through Berkeley. Words on my body. Wrapped around so I won’t forget them. There are different fonts I like but on my body I want it typed like a typewriter. Each click, a new memory. I am not going to India. Not yet. I am going to Cuba instead, inshaAllah. There I can sit with my Tía Rosa. I can make her coffee, tell her don’t worry I will get the water from the well. I will have ear plugs this time so I won’t wake up when the giant pigs across the street are being weighed. They sound like aliens. I will miss the clacking of the horse hoofs in the middle of the night but I will be able to dream. Maybe I will be able to dream stories. Stories like my mami used to tell me on Saturday nights. She no longer repeats those stories over and over again. She has been in the United States for almost 40 years now. More years than living in Cuba.
I am saving my words for Cuba. They are tucked away in my heart. In between coffee making and salat I will write, inshaAllah. This trip seems better than India. I will speak like a Cuban again.
I tell my family my Ramadan stories. I feel like a child again. It is a full circle for me. Everything my mami taught me I am relearning. Sometimes I am shy to say that I cry when I realize how much I love God. Like a child. I am in my purest state. The other night I had anxiety regarding things of this life. I was pmsing. Sometimes it feels like the end of the world. Before I went to bed I said la ilaha illa Allah over and over again. I said it until I cried. I said it until my heart was pounding so hard I felt it coming out of my chest. I said it until I realized that all I need is God.
I want the words typewritten on my body so I can remember this month. Remember what I have learned, the breakthroughs I’ve had, the beautiful people I have communed with. I want to remember this because it is my first. I took my shahada a few days after Ramadan ended last year. Two days after my birthday. My 33rd year. Some people call it the Jesus year. A spiritual year. It was an amazingly spiritual year for me, mashaAllah. Maybe I won’t miss it. The words are tucked away in my heart. They will spill unto the page and the memories will surface. I can take everything that I have learned and implement them, inshaAllah. I finally understand what going with the flow means. It is me, just like this.