My First Ramadan: A Mighty Writers Essay

by Mighty Writers

This essay was written by a student at Mighty Writers, an education nonprofit that offers free writing classes to over 2,500 inner-city Philadelphia students a year.

“Aminah, are you sure you’re ready for this?” said my brother. I started to worry, but I ignored him.

“No! I want to start fasting!” I said cheerfully. But, let me say this: the last meal will be your last. I wish I knew this before I started fasting for the first time. I’m going to share my experience with fasting during Ramadan as my vivid memory. It was my first time and I was excited. But after a while, I learned that you should be grateful and patient.

It all started five years ago during Ramadan. Ramadan is a holiday that Muslims celebrate. We are supposed to fast during the day and break our fast when the sun sets. I was feeling very jovial because I was ready to start fasting. I went to my mom’s room and begged her to let me start fasting. She wasn’t sure but she said, “Sure, but I don’t wanna hear any complaining.” I was determined and I didn’t care how hard it would be. I wish I knew that it was difficult at first.

The first few hours, I felt fine. I didn’t think of food or even cared. After three hours, I was done! I yearned for the taste of food. My senses were stronger than ever before. I felt like I was smelling food from every direction. I smelled tacos, burgers, grilled chicken, and more. I was about to have a breakdown. I complained more than anyone in the world. I was ready to give up.

“MOM! Can I please have food! I need food!” I yelped as I slammed myself on the floor. I was desperate for any taste of food. She sat me down and gave me a long talk.

“Aminah Muhammad! You should be grateful! There are people out there who want what you have! A soft bed, warm meals, and good education is what not all people have!” I felt bad for acting so rude and disrespectful. I should’ve at least shown some courtesy. So after that, I remained quiet and focused in order to finish fasting. I kept myself busy and tried to focus on other things. I played games with my siblings and read my favorite books. After that, it was time to break fast and I had a feast. I felt like I won a race. It was a big accomplishment. When I took a bite out of the food, I saw unicorns.

The last meal will be your last, so you should be grateful. You should remember that there are people out there who don’t have what you have. A warm blanket, food, television, and a nice bed. We should be kind and grateful because we are blessed.

 

By Aminah Muhammad, 8th grade Mighty Writer

top photo: “Iftar at home” by Raasiel via Flickr Creative Commons

 

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