Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Tribute to the Unsung Muslimah


She is the sheikh’s wife, who takes your questions to her husband to answer because you are too shy to ask him yourself. She is the one you blame for denying women direct access to the sources of knowledge; whom you accuse of being jealous and possessive, afraid that her husband will want to marry you. She is the one who lovingly presses that piece of paper of yours into her husband’s hands, who encourages him to take ten minutes, twenty minutes, an hour longer away from his time with her, to solve your problems.
She is an unsung Muslimah.
She is the immigrant sister from an Arab country, struggling to speak English yet gladly giving up her Saturday mornings to sit in the masjid and try to teach you the complex rules of Tajweed. She is the one you grumble about, whom you make a face at behind her back, because you think her correction of your recitation is harsh criticism. She is the one you accuse of making the Qur’an “dry” and “boring” and makes you lose interest in it. She is the one who labours hard every week, praying to Allah that He uses her as a means of you recognizing the deep beauty of the Qur’an and drawing closer to Him.
She is an unsung Muslimah.
She is the kindly Indian aunty who labours over her stove to cook up some of her delicious chicken curry, to be served with sunny basmati rice with lentils, for the iftaar at the Masjid. She is the one you complain smells of sweat all the time, who carries with her an air of masaalah that follows her more strongly than any of the perfumes you spray on before you leave home. She is the one you accuse of stinking up the masjid. She is the one whose hard work and lovingly concocted delicacy you pick at, saying that you can’t stand the greasy sauce. She is the one who spent her precious, dwindling stock of money on the ingredients for that dish, so that she could have the reward of feeding the fasting Muslim.
She is an unsung Muslimah.
She is that young teenage Muslimah who cheerfully rounds up your kids at the masjid and tries to entertain them while you pray Taraweeh or listen to the halaqah. She is the one you scold for making the kids too excited and causing them to make noise. She is the one you harshly reprimand for allowing your precious son to have his toy taken away, making him come running to you crying. She is the one patiently controlling her temper with the little ones, when all she really wants is to listen to the same imam you are falling asleep listening to.
She is an unsung Muslimah.

She is the one who wants to make Eid fun for your kids and decides to throw an Eid party at the Islamic centre. She is the one whom you criticize for the hall being too crowded, the food too little, the children too noisy. She is the one you scream at for not controlling the children on the games, while you demand that your ickle wee Aboodi be allowed to go first on the ride. She is the one whom you forget to give your event ticket too, and she is the one who silently pays out of her own pocket to cover the cost. She is the one whose time, money, and frayed nerves she is spending for the Sake of Allah.
She is an unsung Muslimah.
(Copyright Zainab bint Younus aka AnonyMouse)

4 comments:

C said...

Asalaamu Alaikum

This is beautiful, you have me in tears.

Arif Kabir said...

Very inspiring article, Masha'Allah.

May Allah give our mothers, wives, daughters, and all of the other sisters patience and khayr for all that they do.

I'm now thinking of making an "Unsung Muslim Men" article :)

Edward Ott said...

that was most excellent

Safiyyah said...

Wonderful! How we take others for granted :(