Thursday, October 1, 2009

My Ramadhan Score Card

In my previous posting I wrote about a few ‘Ramadhan Resolutions’ I would like to undertake. Well, Ramadhan is over, I haven’t started my Puasa Enam and work stress is creeping in fast, so before I lose track of time and before I get swarmed with other things labelled as ‘I’m your priority now!!’, I’d better get this out of the way.

I am glad I gave it a thought to prepare myself for the holy month. Instead of just ‘enduring’ it, I had some missions to accomplish. And my self-reflection after a full month of fasting based on the said resolutions can be summarised as follows (minus some details which are between me and the Almighty):

1. I will refrain from coffee and I will not go back to sleep after sahur.
I suffered from caffeine withdrawal syndrome the first few days of my coffee abstinence. I felt better once the slight headache and buzzing I felt went away. Yes, I did stay away from coffee for the whole month. I have now started to consume coffee again, but I remain moderate. Plain water, tea and Milo are my best buddies now and I wish to keep it that way. As for not sleeping after sahur, I think the additional time I had was normally well used to either read the Quran or clean the house. Well, I did go back to sleep a few times, and I completely missed sahur twice…blamed it on the early morning English Premier League games and my occasional sheer indulgence in catching up with some zzzzz….

2. I will reduce the trips to Ramadhan bazaar, and exercise moderation if I do go there (the once a year popiah and kuih talam will be my biggest challenge).
I think I passed this one with flying colours….zilch trip to the daily food fiesta, and the best part, I was not even tempted…Well, except for the sole purchase of a murtabak, which by the way, was bought at an isolated location far away from the Ramadhan Bazaar….So, technically that did not amount to a visit to the bazaar…(by my technical definition of course).

3. I will go to tarawih more often; the number of tarawih I go to must exceed all my jari tangan..:)
Well, a bit yo-yo-like on this one. I was all for going to the mosque for tarawih prayers, and I did just that for the first 4 nights. Then my right knee had a different idea, and the discomfort and pain I felt led me to believe that I’d better of doing the prayers at home. I also prayed for my knee to heel. And miraculously, Alhamdulillah, the knee ‘popped’ after 4 agonising days and I felt much better after that. I then resumed going to the mosque, though not as frequent as I should. I did the tarawih at home for most days that I didn’t go to the mosque…but there were also days when I missed them completely…..Overall, more days doing tarawih than last year, which exceeded the number of all my jari tangan and kaki. Must try to be more focused (khusyuk) coz there were times when my mind was way off to God knows where…And finally, I don’t really know how I did on this one as only Allah knows. …Terimalah amalan ku Ya Allah…Amin.

4. I will stick to my buka puasa routine; kurma, drink and light meal....go for maghrib, isya and tarawih...then only the proper meal. My sahur routine shall remain the same; oat meal drinks or other similar drinks.
I managed to adhere to this routine most of the the time, and as a result I shed some unwanted kilos by the end of Ramadhan…Unfortunately, I regained most of them back after the hari raya break:). I tried to eat like normal non-fasting days, and it worked. However, since my wife cooked everything we had on the table (due to our self-imposed ban on visits to the Ramadhan bazaar), sometimes there were leftovers which I diligently tried to finished during sahur to avoid wasting them. The overall result, I felt better, healthier and wide awake during tarawih prayers. This routine is highly recommended for those who want to lose weight, or want to feel better while performing tarawih prayers. Definitely a keeper for next Ramadhan.

5. I will attempt at making my ibadat more meaningful; more khusyuk in my prayers, reading the Quran and yassin for myself and for Abah, do more ibadat that is more "people-related", less talk and more work (yup, lots of papers to write, just have to choose the ones which carry more impact).
I tried…I tried…and no idea how I had performed…all I can say is that I did try. I tried to revive the tradition of giving food (not exchanging food) to the neighbours. We put the food in disposable containers with the hope that the neighbours would not feel obliged to return the favour…unless they want to. My daughters really enjoyed this, pressing the neighbours’ doorbells and saying aloud ‘Assalamualaikum’ and then giving the food. My gain - I think I got to know my neighbours a little bit more now (I just moved in about two months earlier) and I hope my daughters also took away some positive values from the activities.

6. I will find time to hang those pictures on the wall of my new house....lots of them. I guess this is my form of exercise for this Ramadhan.
I only managed to finished my daughters’ room..that’s it. Got other things to do lahhh. Will have to find time to do up my room and the guest room soon.

And that’s it. Now, I must find time to do the Puasa Enam....and try to visit more people on my own accord, not just when invited to their Open House. Sigh....It's not hard to guess which way the scale is tilting the next time I weigh myself....