That’s what I think Ramadan is.

It’s a time to reboot, turn the switch off, and start again.

All the bad habits, the excesses that we might have gotten into the habit of eating, drinking or doing, are shut off, from dawn till sunset for a lunar month of 29 or 30 days.

And isn’t it interesting that recent research says that it takes 21 days to get rid of a bad habit?

I have to admit that when Ramadan draws near, I always feel both a sense of anticipation and a sense of dread.

Sometimes the dread is greater than the anticipation and sometimes it’s the other way around.

It’s really not easy to give up eating and drinking for that long, and these days with the summer hours, we’re talking about seventeen hours! Every year Ramadan moves up the calendar by ten days because the lunar calendar is about ten days shorter than the Gregorian (solar) calendar. So next year Ramadan will start around July 20th! In about four more years it’ll be in June, close to the summer solstice where we’re talking 18 hour fasts in the height of summer heat.

I’ve done it before. When I was about twenty. Oh the thirst! It was hard! 

It takes about 36 years for Ramadan to go through the calendar year.

And with the long days coming, I guess it’s natural to feel dread.

And yet no matter how long the fasts are, you ALWAYS get used to them!

Back when it was in the height of June, the month whizzed by, just as it has this month!

I can’t believe it’s the 23rd night already!

Where did it go?

And in a week or so it will be Eid and we will say good bye to Ramadan, and I’m not even close to being ready to! How I will miss it so!

Tonight I went to taraweeh prayers, even though I had lemon squares to bake for Eid. (Been baking up a storm! Made some of my famous chocolate cake with coffee icing and gave some to the neighbours!)

I was debating whether to go or not to taraweeh or pray at home, I have two books to read by Wednesday plus I’m behind on my Quran reading (Every year I try to read the whole thing in English by the end of Ramadan). But hubby said something like it’s not going to wait for you.

Meaning that the taraweeh wouldn’t be there later.

And so I got dressed in some nicer clothes and went.

Last year we had two Libyan imams come who’d memorized the Quran, to lead the taraweeh prayer. (These are extra prayers we pray in Ramadan). Their voices were enchanting! They couldn’t come this year because of all the turmoil there. But still, tonight’s imam was very nice too.

And there’s just something so beautiful and melodic about listening to the Quran in Arabic, in this, the month that it was first revealed. And with all the courses I took in Arabic grammar, I can pick out words here and there and get the general gist of what’s being said.

I just feel so close to God, the Creator, the Most Merciful, the Sustainer.

Like I could reach up and wave or something.

And that blanket of serenity that I already mentioned envelops my heart, and my heart swells like it’s so full of love and peace and all kinds of good stuff…oh I know this sounds corny, but I can’t find better words to express it!

Last year’s Ramadan was the best!

I think I was getting into Hajj mode or something.

This year I’ve been a bit more distracted, what with the L.A. trip and all. The feeling of being rebooted has taken longer to manifest itself.

But these last ten nights are proving definitely climactic.

I’m riding the crescendo of …I don’t know…righteousness? Goodness? Love and good will toward all mankind? Something like that.

And even when I’m dealing with business matters, there’s a part of me that’s detached and thinking that there are far more important things at hand.

It’s a realignment of priorities.

It’s developing a greater consciousness that God is watching.

And it’s a rebooting.

And come Eid, the switch gets flicked back and I’ll go back to my normal routine.


And yet with each Ramadan, Masha Allah, I feel like the effect lasts longer and longer into the next year.