Another Conversation with Mami

It isn’t often that I find good moments to talk with my mother about Islam. The first time I told her I was Muslim, we were stuck in traffic jam for an hour. We talked a lot that day. Soon after that conversation, I haven’t really found the time nor the place…nor the courage….to bring up the subject again. I am so afraid to hurt her, that I do not want to bring up a subject that may cause her confusion, discomfort…

Well, today she got stung by an insect. Her foot swelled up real bad. She said that perhaps she got stung by the bichos (insects) that give lyme disease or yellow fever. I told her I have no idea what she was talking about…She said her bones hurt and that perhaps the small insect bite would be the rotten thing that kills her…. I told her it would stop swelling if she puts her foot in a hot bath…She agreed. So, I prepared for her a water bath for her swollen foot. She threw in fresh mint. She said it would kill the bacteria. We both sat in the living room together without the television and she asked me why I wanted to leave in a week.

Me: I need to get work done…

Mom: But school doesn’t start until late September…you will be so lonely there.

Me: I know…but I think I just want to go back.

Mom: Don’t go back so soon…I will be lonely here.

Me: The truth is mom…

Mom: …

Me: You know, “we” celebrate Ramadan.

Mom: (laughs) who is “we”? and what is Ramanan?

Me: Ramadan is the month that Muslim fast, mom. Remember, I told you that it’s one of those main things “we” do besides pray and give money to the poor…remember?

Mom: Oh, yea…so what is the problem with celebrating Ramadan here with us?

Me: I am afraid you won’t understand….

Mom: Well then tell me what I have to do…

Me: You dont have to do anything. I will fast; not eating or drinking from sunrise to sunset.

Mom: So why can’t you do that here?

Me: Because you are always trying to feed me…and you put ham in my food last week… remember…?

Mom: it’s was just a little ham, hija. I didn’t know…I forgot.

Me: I know you forgot. I know you don’t know…

Mom: It was just little pieces of ham, I didn’t know. I thought you just couldn’t eat pork…

Me: Yea. I don’t eat any pig product. I don’t eat gummi bears anymore, you know…

Mom: Gummi bears? They’re just gummi bears…

Me: But they are made with Gelatin. It’s a pig product…so I don’t eat them.

Mom: Wow…gummi bears…

Me: Yea.

Mom: Well, I want to respect you “things”… So, what kind of food should I make for you?

Me: Just make a lot of rice…but without ham or pork. And beans, I like your black beans, they’re good…

Mom: Ok, just tell me what to cook for you…

Me: Ok…but remember…please, not before sunset, ok?

Mom: Will you stop celebrating Christmas with your family now?

Me: I don’t celebrate Christmas, but I will still buy you presents.

Mom: How about the Christmas tree?

Me: Yea, I guess. Can we call it a holiday tree?

Mom: Sure…(laughs)

Me:…(laughs)

Mom: How about the pork on Noche Buena?

Me: No pork, Mami…

Mom: It’s ok, I can make you some chicken on Noche Buena, so you can eat with us too.

Me: I like chicken…

Mom: Do you cover your head?

Me: sometimes…

Mom: Oh… Does it get hot?

Me: It’s hot without it…

Mom: true…

Me: I always wear it to pray…

Mom: When do you pray?

Me: Everyday…remember mom? The 5 “main things” I told you about?

Mom: Oh yea…you Muslims pray a lot. But praying is good…

Me: Yea…

Mom: Do you tell everyone you are Muslim?

Me: Some people know, some people I don’t really care to tell them anything…

Mom: Oh…

Me:…

Mom: just ten cuidado, hija. (“Be careful, daughter”).

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2 thoughts on “Another Conversation with Mami

  1. Ohhh! God bless ur mom. She seems 2 begin 2 understand now 🙂 happy 4 u!
    Seems that u r going 2 eat lots of rise in Ramadan :p

    • My mom is pretty awesome, haha. Everything takes time, but Allah never fails in opening eyes, ears and hearts if you only just ask and be patient… 🙂

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