16 Ramadan 1441

It may also come as no surprise, but there are challenges to pandemic living—also known as, when shit hits the fan and splatters over all the walls of the room you are so privileged to take shelter in.

One of those challenges is getting things done.

Because what I think I need to do or want to do in the morning (if I actually roll out of bed in the morning) shifts every hour so that by the time I get to, say 4 PM EST, I think – Oh. I did not do that thing again.

I did not call that relative.

I did not apply for that job.

I did not respond to that email.

I did not write that letter.

I did not ask my partner if he applied for that other job.

I did not research my healthcare options.

I did not figure out how to get tested for antibodies.

I did not try to have babies.

I did not break down my monthly budget.

I did not decide whether I should finally remove the child safety bars that were installed in front of the bedroom window by a previous tenant so that I can hang out on the fire escape.

I did not order the indoor garden to grow herbs.

I did not submit the final round of edits for that journal article.

I did not read more tweets, posts, and messages about Ahmaud Arbery.

I did not watch that video.

I did not call the super.

I did not clean the oven.

I did not have that conversation about what do we do next?

I did not do those things, because at a certain point, I began menstruating and realized I didn’t need to be fasting so I could go for a quick flaming hot Cheetos and fruits and vegetables run while it was still daytime, and because at a certain point, the sun was shining so brightly through my windows although our phones promised there would be rain later in the day, and I realized I had no tomatoes and I wanted to eat fish curry for iftar.

So I did other things.

I put on jeans, a hoodie, and a mask. I grabbed the trash on my way out. I threw away the trash. I ran down the block. I quickly selected some tomatoes, a box of strawberries, and a whole cantaloupe. I said muchas gracias to the masked young man who gave me a black plastic bag to pack my things. I walked back to stop inside the bodega, and grabbed two bags of flaming hot Cheetos. I asked the masked brother behind the counter, How’s your Ramadan going and how is your family? He said, Alhamdulillah.

And then I ran back home and washed everything and myself and my clothes and sat in front of my window to witness snow flurries outside for 5 minutes.

And I feel so accomplished and fulfilled because I have everything I need at the moment to make a fish curry for iftar.


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