My mother watches my son while I’m at work. Last week, when I picked him up, she handed me a small gift bag. “What’s this?” I asked. There was no special occasion, and so if it was something she had bought for me while shopping, it didn’t need to be in a gift bag with tissue paper. “Just a simple gift,” she replied. I kissed her goodbye, thanked her, and was on my way.
In the rush and commotion of putting my son in his carseat, I had placed the gift bag close to the door, on the floor, along with his diaper bag. During my 45 minute commute home, I kept attempting to reach over to the gift bag, with no avail. What could the simple gift be?
Of course when I drove into the garage, my son started fussing, causing me to forget about the gift bag for a few minutes. I took him out, leaving the gift bag in the car, took him into the house and started his nap time routine: diaper change, bottle of milk, shut the blinds, and put him into his crib with a blanket and pacifier. As I closed his bedroom door, I remembered the gift bag. I ran back to the garage, took out the bag and ran back into the house.
Sitting on the couch, I carefully removed the tissue paper and pulled out the “simple gift.” It was beyond simple. In my hands, I held a Quran and a Dua’a book tied together with a home-made ribbon. I lightly touched the Quran with the tips of my fingers as thought I have never touched one before. Of course I have a number of Qurans and Islalmic books in my home, but something about this one was different. It was a gift. And not just any gift. It was the holiest and most meaningful gift someone can give or receive. It’s the kind of gift that should be used on a daily basis and yet my busy life had been too busy for the past couple months. I opened the dua’a book and started reading from it. Two hours had passed when I finished reading the last page and my son started to wake up from his nap. I placed the book down next to the Quran and as I stood up I felt a renewed energy and a feeling of great accomplishment- even though I hadn’t started any of the house chores.
Since then, I get excited whenever my son is sleeping and I have time for myself so that I can read from the Quran or from the dua’a book. Subhanallah, it took a “simple gift”- another Quran in the house- to get me reading from it again. Our lives can be so hectic sometimes, but the importance of putting out time in the day to read from the Quran is so important. Insha’allah this simple gift of mine will remind me to do just that, each day.
Hoda is a wife and a mother to a stillborn daughter in heaven and a one year old son. She is an elementary school teacher in public school and lives in Virginia.