Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Giving Water

Asalamu Alaykom,

During the hottest week yet this summer, we had an errand to run.  As a family, we went down our street with the aim to catch an air-conditioned taxi.  My husband and son, being males, focused on the goal ahead.  I, being female, noticed the little boy too short to turn on a faucet.  The water tap, supplied by the mosque, was meant as a form of charity.  They hadn't figured on this small guy being all alone and thirsty.

Despite the fact that I got in trouble the last time I tried to help a boy in my neighborhood, I stopped walking.  I asked my husband to help the boy.  Ahmed went over and filled the cup---probably a germy cup since it's used by ever passerby---and gave it to the boy.  The boy drank without thanking anyone because that's what kids do.

I thanked my husband as he returned to me and we continued on our walk.

"Mom," my own boy began, "how did you even notice him?"

"Didn't you see him?" I asked.

"No, I can't pay attention to everything!"

I thought and then replied, "I can't either, but I do notice the needy.  If I can help, then I do."

Over Ramadan, I found so much solace in helping the mama cat and her kitten.  To give them water and watch them drink has felt so good.  I'm sharing the video at the top of this post because an eco-friendly man found a way to record just who it was drinking out of the pail of water he had been leaving.


Later, on the day we were running an errand, I saw that, across the street, the cart with the Eid hats and noisemakers.  It was still being pushed with hopes that someone...anyone...would buy.  I marveled at that and even turned my head to watch him as he went away.  Then, I saw his feet without shoes.  His feet were on city street's burning pavement and he kept walking along without any protection.

I stopped and asked my husband if we could help him.

"You're too soft, Mom," my son complained.

"Mashahallah," my husband corrected, "Your mom is so sweet."

However, he wouldn't join with me in finding a way to get the man shoes.  The man stayed on my mind the rest of the day, the week, and into today.  We had the money; we just didn't have the time.  Astragferallah.

If I see him again...

and then I wonder why I'm the only one who sees him.  Doesn't anyone else see those in need?

If you see him...

or anyone else whom you can safely help today, then please do.


Anonymous said...

I would like to repeat what your husband said :

"Mashahallah," my husband corrected, "Your mom is so sweet."

Anonymous said...

As part of my faith filled life, I too have been given signs, "because I see". When God puts a sign in front of you, it is your duty to step up, step forward and most importantly, to see. I'm sure the shoeless man shall be on your mind until you find a way to pay forward for that negligence. On the day of judgement, I doubt that "not having time" would be a valid excuse.

Perhaps a form of charity elsewhere?

Yosra said...

Asalamu Alaykom,

To my first comment, Thanks for being kind :)

To my second comment, it's a sincere hardship and blessing to feel for others. Here in Egypt, it can be dangerous to try to help. There are issues wrapped up in this culture that don't have to do with Islam. It's easy to know what to do as a Muslim, but not as easy to know HOW to do it in actual practice. As a woman, I can't always do for a man---almost never. I have to ask my husband or son to bridge that gender gap.

When I asked my husband if we could stop and help the shoeless man, he said we couldn't (meaning at that time). He has put up with me for almost eight years now and he knows that I'm stubborn on some issues. I have had to let go of other times because I can't fight every issue.

Recently, in May, there was a time when I stopped to help a boy and it ended up in a HUGE neighborhood problem. No joke. I wrote about it, but didn't publish it. Maybe I'll publish it still. Knowing the problems that caused, I am twice shy to help again if my husband is not for it.

On Judgment Day, I don't think I will regret what I could have done for the people in the world. I think I will regret what I could have done for my family. Allahu alim.

I realize you're keeping me humble and thanks for that (not that you need to do it on a regular basis).

Love and Light!