How Can I As a Mother, Make the Most of My Ramadan With Young Kids?
Ramadan pre-Kids, was so different, we didn’t have to worry about food during the day, we could break our fast at home or at a restaurant, we didn’t have to worry about leaving anyone behind when we went for our Night Prayers.
We got back as late as we wanted, slept in if we weren’t working. Life was great. Then…We became parents and things change…a lot…Some of us may not be even fasting or attempting to breastfeed & fast in Ramadan which makes it harder.
Whilst it may feel sad that things have changed we can still make the most of Ramadan. Taking time out beforehand to figure out what our goals are and how we imagine Ramadan to be.
We may have to change the specifics and the form of how they look. It may have been finishing the entire Quran or fasting all the days before, but now we have kids, and additional responsibilities so being realistic will help avoid disappointment. It doesn’t have to be less, but it can be different, and do-able for you as a mother.
We have some great tips for making the most of Ramadan as Mothers sent to us by Sumayah who is the founder of Recite & Reflect. She aims to redefine the way the Quran is experienced. Since discovering the power of reflection, she has dedicated herself to teaching Quranic reflection, and making it simple and accessible to everyone.
Originally from the U.S., she moved to Egypt in the early 90’s. Sumayah holds a diploma in Usool At-Tafsir & Uloom Al-Quran (Fundamentals of Quranic Exegesis and Sciences of the Quran) and is studying Advanced Quranic Tafsir Studies with Shaykh Dr. Mohammad Akram Nadwi at the Cambridge Islamic College.
We did an amazing live on Instagram, and you can watch the reply here. And check out all the summary points and details on tips below:
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 1 – Goals
Sit down, reflect and set out goals for Ramadan1440/2019 & ask yourself really what it is you would like to achieve.
Possible goals for Ramadan may be:
- Freedom from the Hellfire
- Having your Duas Answered
- Improving your relationship with Allah (swt)
- Connecting with the Quran
- Healing your Heart
- Remaining Steadfast After Ramadan
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 2 – Prayer (Salah)
One of the primary building blocks of your ibadah or spiritual practice is prayer. In Ramadan we have the opportunity to do a little more than usual:
- 5 Daily prayers
- 12 Sunnah prayers (+nawafil)
- Taraweeh + Tahajjud
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 3 – Relationship with the Quran
Make the intention and plan to spend time with the book of Allah and really apply yourself. Increase your exposure through reading, listening, studying the meaning or reflecting on the verses. Quality over quantity with a present heart and mind.
You can work to finish the entire Quran once or several times within the month, as we know the rewards are multiplied in Ramadan and it’s the month of the Quran. Don’t let the pressure to finish take the spirit out of the process.
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 4 – Thikr (Remembrance of Allah)
Set a daily amount or time for saying each type of thikr.
Subhan Allah, Alhamdulillah, Allahu Akbar, Istighfar (in its various forms) etc.
Keeps your tongue occupied with something beneficial outside of Salah and Quran. Accumulating easy rewards and you can continue to do it even if you aren’t praying or fasting.
Don’t forget the morning and evening athkar!
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 5 – Dua’a Lists
Create dua lists for:
You: Deen, Dunya & Akhira
Family: Marriage, Children, Parents
The Ummah in general
Make dua every chance you get. At night waking up with an infant you can get out your list, in the early hours of the morning, when it rains, between athan & iqamah, at iftar time. Keep making dua.
Take 15 minutes before Iftar where you go to a quiet space and make dua from the heart.
The duas made while breaking your fast are a sure thing, so use the time wisely.
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 6 – Charity
Sadaqah in any form on a daily basis if you can manage it. You can donate online or send food, dates or water to neighbors, friends or the local masjid for the reward of feeding the fasting. Pick up a friend on the drive to the masjid, purchase chairs for the elderly and those who can’t stand up during salah, with the aim of getting rewarded for their prayers etc. Buy books to give away, invest in scholarships for students of knowledge, buy Qurans and put them in prayer rooms or masajid.
Making the Most of Ramadan Tip 7 – Setting Intentions for Your Fasting and Ibadah (acts of worship) in Ramadan
Knowing the reward for an act of worship helps us stay focused and remember why we’re doing it.
It also serves as a source of motivation that what we’re doing is following prophetic guidance and bringing us closer to his beautiful example (pbuh).
A few ahadith, prophetic traditions that are relevant in Ramadan:
‘Ubaadah ibn as-Saamit narrated that the Prophet (s) said,
“Ramadan has arrived to you, a month of barakah (blessings). Allah envelops you (with His mercy and blessings), so He descends His mercy, erases the sins, answers the du’aas, and He watches in (this month) your competition / race for goodness, and He boasts to His angels about you. So let Allah see the best from you, for truly, the miserable one is the one who is prevented Allah’s mercy.” (Tabaraani, saheeh)
The Prophet (s) said, “Whoever fasts Ramadan with eemaan and ihtisaab (seeking Allah’s reward), will be forgiven all his previous sins.” (SB)
The Prophet (s) said, “Whoever fasts one day for the sake of Allah, Allah will place between him and the Fire a ditch as (large as) the distance between the heavens and earth.” (ST)
Prophet (s) said, “Fasting and the Quran will both intercede for the slave on the Day of Resurrection. Fasting will say, “O Lord! I prevented him from his food and desires through the day, so accept my intercession for him. And the Quran will say, ‘I prevented him from sleep at night so accept my intercession for him. So their intercession will be accepted.”
The Prophet (s) said, “Fasting is a shield. So if it is a day where one of you is fasting, then he should not fulfill his desires, nor sin, nor yell, nor behave ignorantly. And if anyone insults him or fights with him, he should say, ‘I am fasting.’”
*Note: All Ahadeeth authenticated by al-Albani, but not referenced here for sake of brevity
Examples of Setting Intentions:
Intentions for reading, reviewing, memorizing, seeking to understand, reflecting on, acting on QUR’AN:
- A guide to our Lord
- Allah’s pleasure and love
- A mercy
- A cure
- Glad tidings
- Sakeenah and solace
- An opening from afflictions
- A tathbeet (make firm)
- A light
- Life for the hearts
- Qur’an’s protection in the grave
- Qur’an’s intercession on Day of Judgment
- A source of elevation in the dunya and Hereafter
Intentions for Qiyam (night prayer):
Prophet (s) said, “Whoever prays Qiyam in Ramadan, out of eemaan and ihtisaab, will be forgiven all his previous sins.”
Prophet (s) said “Hold fast to qiyaam al-Layl; for, truly, it is the way of the righteous before you, a means of closeness to your Lord, an expiation for your bad deeds, and a (a means of) prevention from sins.”
the Prophet (s) said, “If one prays with the Imam until he leaves, it will be recorded that as though he prayed the (full) night.”
Prophet (s) said, “The believer’s honor (or dignity) is (in) praying at night.”
The Prophet (s) said, “You should stick to qiyaam al-layl. For it is the way of the righteous before you, a prevention from sin, and it expels disease from your bodies.”
The Prophet (s) said, “If one gets up to pray at night and his eyes are overtaken by sleep while in sujood, Allah says to His angels: Look, my angels! This is My slave! His soul is with Me and his body is before me. Record his qiyaam for him and count his sleep as a sadaqah from Me on him.”
The Prophet (s) said, “Whoever prays at night with ten verses will not be written amongst he heedless. And whoever prays at night with one hundred aayahs, will be written from the devoutly obedient, and whoever prays at night with one thousand verses will be written from those with a multitude of good deeds.”
Intentions for LOTS of Thikr:
General benefits of Thikr taken from (Surat al-Ahzab:41-45)
- Angel’s salah on you
- Allah removing you from darkness to light
- Allah’s rahmah
- Allah’s greeting of peace on the Day you meet Him
- A generous reward awaiting you
The Prophet (s) said, “Toobaa is for he who finds in his pages (book) a lot of istighfaar.”
The Prophet (s) also said, “Whoever says, “Astaghfirullaah aladhee laa ilaaha illaa huwa wa atoobu ilayh, Allah will forgive him, even if he had fled from the enemies (at the time of battle.)”
Salah on Prophet (s):
The Prophet (s) said, “Whoever forgets (to send) salaah on me has missed the way to Jannah.”
“Whoever makes salaah on me once, Allah will send salaah on him ten times.”
The Prophet (s) said, “The best dhikr is Laa ilaaha illaAllah. And the best du’aa is Alhamdulillah.”
The Prophet (s) said, “Two words, that are beloved to ar-Rahmaan, light on the tongue, and heavy on the scale, SubhaanAllah wa bihamdihi, subhaanAllah al-‘Adheem.”
“(If one) makes tasbeeh on hundred times, one thousand good deeds will be recorded for him, or one thousand sins will be erased from him.”
The Prophet (s) said, “Say: Laa hawla wa laa quwatta illaa billaa a lot; for truly it is a treasure from the treasures of Paradise.”
The Prophet (s) said, “If a slave says, Laa hawla wa laa quwatta illaa billaah, Allah says, ‘My slave has submitted submit and surrendered (to Me).”
We pray this was useful for you. Please keep Sumayah & myself and our families in your Dua’a and we pray you have the most fulfilling Ramadan. Always remember, QUALITY OVER QUANTITY.