My first umrah trip was about 5 years ago, during Ramadhan and I remember making lots of doas that I will get married soon. My prayer wasn't answered immediately, Allah knows best but I'm so blessed that after 5 years, I got married to a special person and we made a promise to do umrah together that same year. Alhamdulillah, we were invited to the House of God, Makkah Al Mukarramah and spent the last days of 2016 in the blessed place.
Because we entered Makkah straight, we had to put on the ihram right from our home in Singapore. Putting on the ihram means there are things that you have to avoid, for ladies, keeping your aurat in check and so on. We left home at 2pm Thursday, and as usual travelling takes a while and we only arrived Makkah, 2am Friday. Checked into the hotel, rest up and at 4.30am we're at the Masjid for Fajr prayers. And that was the beginning of a very straight-forward, simple, spirititual routine that was quite tiring.
I got sick after a few days, because of lack of rest and the amount of coughing you hear and feel at the mosque didnt quite help. Nonetheless, the power and blessings Masjidil Harram has is beyond words. When night comes, I would feel the fever and the body aches while trying to get some rest and praying for health in my heart. Because I cannot take medications ( I get terrible allergy reactions ), the pain got really unbearable and all I could do was keep making doas. Alhamdulillah, All is Great, in the late mornings, I felt some energy to get up and go to masjidil harram to perform my daily prayers. Its almost magical, because back at home, if I had gotten this sick, there is no chance that I could get up the next morning. There is no doubt, there is something really special about Makkah, and I'm very sure, every individual person that comes here would have experienced his or her moments. For me, every morning that I could get up after a whole night of sickness is THE moment.
- Wake up - Fajr - Breakfast - Umrah - Dhuhur - Lunch - Rest - Asr - Rest - Maghrib - Isyak - Dinner - Rest - Wake up
Besides the daily prayers, umrah rituals and all the other sunnah we tried to perform, the one other interesting and rather meaningful for me was to observe the other pilgrims. I was truly amazed at the diversity of the muslim world; the different skin tones, looks, sizes, languages, even the way prayer was done, what they wore to pray and the way they would behave. Arabs, Indians, Pakistanis, Afghanis, Indonesians, Malaysians, Bruneians, British Muslims and the list goes on. It was really heartwarming to see that although we all come from different parts of the world, and sometimes we push and fight our way through the mosque just to get a spot, we all come to Makkah for one same reason - to perform umrah or haj, to pray literally towards Kaabah, and to try to get as close, just to smell the sweetness of Islam.
Every time I felt this, I realised how small I am in the greater scheme of things. This feeling is both good and bad; good because it makes me feel humble and know that Allah is the Greatest, bad because there is this fear that I cannot achieve what I want and the difference I want to make. Nevertheless, I take this opportunity to make lots of doas to ease my wordly affairs; this year will be challenging. Insh'Allah we're getting a new home, going through rennovation is sucha headache. I also hope to be a mom soon and definitely have so much plans for Lully Selb. And....... I have also started this other venture; Modenseek with Noorindah, please follow our Instagram. This is rather new for me but I cannot wait to learn and explore the possibilities, so ping me if you have any ideas/links/connections, it'll be so helpful=).
PS:This photo is taken a at the top of Jabal Nur, where Prophet Muhammad s.aw received the first revelation ; Iqra which means READ. **Note to self for this year is to read more Quraan and books.**
2017 - let's do this!