Sweet and Sour

I roll out the prayer mat and place my feet, shoulder width apart, onto the rug. I pause and take a few deep breaths to focus on the act I am about to begin. I whisper Allah’s name over and over again until I feel the tension within break apart, feel my chest expand and my muscles loosen. I make my intention and raise my hands to my ears. Allahu Akbar. I move slowly through the first rakah, praying with the mindfulness that Allah is watching me. I move into sajdah, forehead and nose touching … [Read more...]

Sharing Our Eid

One of the beautiful things about sending children to public schools is the great opportunity for educating others about Islam. Children gain confidence in their selves and in their identity as Muslim-Americans when they know they can share their traditions with their friends at school. It has a profound effect on children knowing that their holiday is recognized and celebrated by their mostly non-Muslim school community. We all hope to raise a generation of kids who are fully engaged in their … [Read more...]

Reclaiming Our Authority

  This year my family was blessed to experience another Ramadan. It was the first time in eleven years that I have actually made it to Taraweeh prayer. I never thought that time would come, but now my youngest (who just turned four) can actually behave while we pray. So I say to my sisters out there who have not seen the inside of a masjid for years, hang in there, your time will come. Happy as I was to be be there, I was shocked at the behavior of some kids at the masjid. I witnessed kids … [Read more...]

The Everyday Struggle

Motherhood has been bogging me down lately. Now that I've said it, I can hopefully move on. How can I work on elevating my role as a mother when I am dealing with a 4 year old who now qualifies everything as boring? What a boring home! You’re the boring-est mom. Playing with you is so boring! A big THANK YOU to whoever taught her that word. In the low points, I wonder where I went wrong in her upbringing. Maybe she’s (gasp)…spoiled. Maybe it’s just a phase. I hope it’s just a phase. … [Read more...]

The Courage to say “Help Me”

I clench my fists and grind my teeth, but I can tell already that I won’t be able to hold in the onslaught of anger. I’m tired, so tired of refereeing games and wrestling matches; the he took my, she hid my, he hit me, she ate my…. constant bludgeoning of my senses. Sometimes I can’t tell whether the wailing screech I hear is one of pained anguish, or hysterical laughter. The noise level beats me to my knees, and I beseech Allah for peace…. just as bedtime rolls around. I prepare to … [Read more...]

Salah Club

Everyone likes to feel like they belong to something special. I noticed the children at Sunday school responded positively to our new pilot project “Salah Club.” Like many schools, we have a hard time settling the younger ones down for Zhur salah. One day I said, “All those in Salah Club, come join the line.” They proudly marched to their spots and stood attentively. I paused and thought to myself, “Wow. I think we’re on to something worth sharing.” For … [Read more...]


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