All of this..vanished this year!
(My Alternative Eid)
This Eid..I had to substitute all of that! To find alternatives..even to the home-made cookies!And still being amid the hurricane-evacuation-chaos..I was in a hotel room..and was supposed to enjoy eid!!
Before evacuation, my initial plan was to buy new clothes, play eid songs in the dorm, spending it with the people living there..and baking our cookies -for the first time in my life..!
Now, everything has changed because of the hurricane..! I'm handcuffed in a room in a hotel in a different city!
(Islamic Center we visited on Eve of Eid to ask about Eid Prayers)
So, I had to come up with Plan C this time !!
Overcoming the sudden tears and depression fits..I bought different kinds of cookies..including oreo (I dunno how Oreo gonna compensate for out "kah'k and my grandma's pettitfour..but I couldn't think of anything else!!), bought balloons of different sizes and colours.. got decorations..and bought a new blouse and nailpolish!! We've (me and my Tunisian friend here) found an islamic center (the first I've seen since my arrival to the US.)..and I found something that I can relate to at last...and they'll be holding eid prayers in a showplace in the next morning! Now I felt I'm ready..and was back to the Eid Cheerful Mood!
(My new stuff for Eid, just as my lill sis Heba and I used to do!)
Eid Morning: I played "Takbeerat El Eid" in the room while getting ready...and that got the spirit of Eid..! We arrived to show place at 9 am, paid "Zakat" and was sitting in a vast place at last..with the rows of brothers infront waiting for prayers and reciting Takbeerat along..and I was sitting with Muslim women and girls of all origins and nationalities...Pakistani, Indians, Syrians, Egyptians, Arabs, Americans, Africans, African-Americans..of every colours, background, and nationality...but all that gathered us now were new colourful clothes and Eid.
People were flowing in..and coming in big numbers..which was amazing for me..and felt like any big prayers at home! But, I was missing the sky! I didn't want a ceiling covering up all that beauty..I wanted our Takbeerat -and prayers- to be sent directly to the blue sky! I wanted whenever I raise my head up..to look onto the clear sky..not onto a roof! I also stopped looking at the banners inside that were putting the whole prayers out of context: You can see banners of other exhibitions of every other kind (military-patriotism thingie, animals exhibitions, etc etc)..I stopped looking that way too..I wanted to keep the last cheerful thought within me..so I concentrated on little kids with their cheerful clothes and feeling innocently happy..without knowing what "alienation, estrangement, missing, home country, far distance" is! All they know now..is being dressed up for a cheerful event!
Prayers started by 10 am. when the Imam arrived! I then heard the first English Sermon...! and with people greeting one another for Eid..I then was broken-hearted! Not finding anyone of my family around to greet..started to ache my heart heavily..till I finally broke into a serious crying fit that went for quite a while! All I wanted then was just to greet them and leave..! I didn't mind spending Eid alone..as much as I minded not being with them for 5 min. after Eid prayers..and seeing the joy because of that.
A Note: Seeing how people took the effort of driving a long way, and dressing their little kids in new clothes, and take the pain to come to Eid Prayers...is nothing to be taken for granted! Despite how hard it is must have been for some, yet they came and rejoiced with their brothers and sisters who came from everywhere! This makes you appreciate more the blessings you have..! Alhamdulelah
hmm..Now I still want to make "petitfour"..any recipes anyone? :))
Rejoice: This is My Eid song..I couldn't savour it then because of constant crying, but now we can:
العيد فرحة..وأجمل فرحة..يجمع شمل قريب وبعيد