29 Ramadan 1442
For the days of mercy, I began Ramadan menstruating; I said goodbye to my Columbia students who sent me the most gorgeous letters; I got iftari from Jackson Heights; I ate my 5th (?) set of vaccination donuts from Krispy Kreme with a most excellent human; I engaged in a brilliant full of heart conversation with AAPI artists organized by a most excellent human; I broke fast with my favorites at Central Park; I joined in a Believers Bailout dua and chill organized by a most excellent human; I took long walks under blossoming city trees; people we know and love died; and I finally picked up the courage to buy a plane ticket home.
For the days of forgiveness, I hugged my family after 471 days and cried and cried; I told my mom I’m taking my dad for a walk but then actually took him to the beach; I worked and recorded all my Rikers classes outside in the backyard; I walked on the grass with my bare feet; I made a new horse friend who likes sniffing my chest; I annoyed my brother who got me treats from Dunkin’ Donuts; I ate so much good food; I read things; I talked to friends over the phone; and people we know and love died.
And for the days of freedom from the fire, I zoomed with a therapist; my husband flew down; I fed birds and turtles and fish bagels and tortilla chips; I walked some more; I forgave some more; I slept some more; I dreamt incredible dreams; I ate so much good food; Colombia’s militarized law enforcement attacked demonstrators protesting poverty and inequality exacerbated by the pandemic; Israeli police opened fire on worshippers within the Haram al-Sharif itself on the last 10 nights of Ramadan as the whole world watched; innocent Shi’i girls were bombed and killed while attending school and no one has claimed responsibility as the U.S. military withdraws from Afghanistan; there has already been 194 shootings in the U.S. this year including 10 this past weekend; I went to the masjid for the first time since March 2020; I got cards and TREATS in the mail; I recorded my last Rikers class of the semester; people we know and love died; and I finished reading the Qur’an again.