The parting of loved ones | Musings of a sister

That dread begins to seep in a couple of days before and deepens as the hours fly by and the time of departing draws nearer. Reuniting with my eldest sister and her family after almost ten years, spending an amazing four whole weeks with them…it is time to leave.

We are told through the beautiful hadith of the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) the maternal aunt has a high status in Islam, which is similar to that of the mother, as Abu Dawood (2278) narrated from ‘Ali (may Allah be pleased with him, from the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), that he said: “The maternal aunt is of the same status as the mother.” Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.

My children instantly clicked with my sister, my daughter found sisterhood amongst her two cousins and my sisters home felt just like home away from home Alhamdulillah.

I will always be grateful to Allah swt for allowing us this precious time together, for all the breathtaking and wonderful places we visited, the delicious food we ate and especially for all the joyful laughter we shared.

The time has finally come to part ways, the dread has reached our eyes and the tears begin to flow. We hug tight for who knows when we will meet again. InshaAllah.

As my flight takes off my eyes begin to weep, tears flowing freely and there is not much I can do to stop them. The only thing I can do is make dua that both my sisters, their families and progeny are blessed with the best in deen, dunya and akhirah. Aameen.

As my fears creep in and I begin to wonder when I will see my sister again, I am suddenly reminded that even though we are far apart, the One who created this bond between us is always with us and He is closer to us than our jugular vein. In loving and remembering Him, I am able to feel close to my sister.

He sees and knows everything including what is in our hearts and He is the One who will keep our bond strong no matter what the distance between us, aameen.

May Allah swt bless and protect all our sisters for their love, care, support and guidance they give us as well as the happiness and laughter they bless our lives with, aameen.

Musings of a Mother | To My First Loss

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيم

In the name of Allah, The Most Gracious and The Most Merciful

I pray that this letter reaches the hearts of all those mothers (and fathers) who have hoped, loved and lost. InshaAllah I pray that in some small way it somehow comforts you and that it helps to start much needed conversations.

Please take a moment to read, reflect and remind ourselves that where there is Allah swt there is always hope.

To my first loss… my beloved baby

I am writing you an apology because that’s what us mothers do, we feel responsible, we feel guilty and we apologise especially when it comes to our children. Even when we know it was not our fault, we feel like our body let us down and now here I am years later still apologising.

I know its normal because that’s what grief is… it fades away and suddenly appears when you least expect it.

I am so sorry that I did not understand what was happening and that I was confused and angry. I know that you were not meant to be with us in this temporary life and that your stay was brief but so very sweet.

In the short time you were with me, I had already dreamt up a whole life and envisioned how things would be. I had imagined how you would play with your big sister and how you would grow up together so close in age.

But that was not meant to be. You returned to Allah swt and I was left with an empty void.

I was so confused and angry. I am so sorry that no reason was given for losing you. I know it was Allah swt’s will but anything would have been better than being told “its just one of those things”.

You were not just one of those things…not to me and not to your abbu. You were our baby.

Your father, your abbu. MashaAllah he was so strong when we lost you… well he seemed strong. All throughout he was so patient and calm. I was too numb to really see what he was going through. I am so sorry I didn’t see his pain.

It started with a slight backache, slowly creeping and developing into a messy devastation too raw to write in to words. I was shocked.

Your abbu was so patient, so caring. He took care of me and your sister for the days that followed. So many days I don’t even know how many. Days that just blurred into each other one after another…I lost count.

I am so sorry that I was in shock because I really do not remember much except that somehow I managed to get through it all…now I realise it was only because of the strength that Allah swt gave otherwise how can any human being survive a loss like that.

I am so sorry that I was so exhausted and overwhelmed with pain that I never really thought about how your abbu was feeling or what he must have been going through.

The few people who knew about you said things like “at least you have your daughter” and “it was Allah’s will, don’t cry”.

How could they say that? Of course I had your big sister and I was so so grateful for that but your sister wasn’t you…I knew it was Allah swt’s will but that did not mean I couldn’t cry or mourn your loss or grieve the life I had imagined for you.

Do not worry dear baby, I understand they were only trying to be helpful and deep down they didn’t really know what else to say. I just wish that someone had told me it was okay to cry and let my heart grieve freely for you. I needed to know that I was still a good Muslim even though I wanted to grieve the loss of my baby. I needed to know that Allah swt wouldn’t be angry with me for weeping and longing for you so much. But no one told me and I struggled.

The void you left in me was so deep that all I could feel was empty. I don’t think I ever stopped feeling that way…even now though it has been so many years I still feel it there. That void belongs to you, it is your haq, your right my sweet baby. Now that time has passed it is unnoticeable but some days when I least expect it…it opens up gaping at me – perhaps to serve as a reminder of your brief existence in this world. Perhaps to remind me of Allah swts power and His swt plan for me.

Do not worry beloved baby, I fully accept Allah swt’s will and decree without question, I am not complaining.

I am just relieved to know now that it is okay to miss you and that grief is normal. It is a part of who we are as human beings and how we are created. We were designed by Allah swt to feel loss and emotion and grieve. Maybe that’s why even after so many years I am writing this.

I find peace in knowing that we will meet again one day inshaAllah and that day will be forever. You will be in our arms and we will never ever have to let you go.

Love you always, Mummy x

For information please visit the Muslim Bereavement Support Service:

For support for bereaved women please contact:

Musings of a Muslimah | Dua for my Daughter

Officially a teenager.

Dearest daughter

As you blossom year by year,

may your heart be filled with hope and emptied of any fear.

If there is a time your eyes shed tears,

always always remember – Allah swt’s help is near.

May He swt bless you with the best of everything in this life,

and may you never experience any pain or any strife.

But if you do then my love, stay strong,

inshaAllah it wont be there for too long.

May you always remember your Creator in everything you do and say,

as you live the life you have been given in your own fearless way.

May He swt bless you with confidence and wisdom,

may you always choose whats right.

May you always have love and freedom,

imaan in your heart and light in your life.

May you flourish and continue to blossom,

You will always have our duas and blessings.

May you be blessed with all that is good in this life and the next,

may you and your heart always be content.


Love always Mummy & Abbu 💖

Muslimah Musings | Life’s Mosaic

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيم

In the name of Allah, The Most Gracious and The Most Merciful.

Alhamdulillah, I’ve recently spent a lot of time, effort and energy planning a course about Islam and Grief and its been designed specifically to support bereaved Muslim youth. (May Allah swt accept it, aameen).

The topic is very sensitive so I’ve incorporated some simple and effective art techniques throughout the sessions so that the students can engage more effectively and alhamdulillah it’s proven to be quite effective.

After the session, whilst evaluating and discussing with my husband how the session went I realised something.

I realised that all the times I doubted following my passion and studying Art and Design…it now all made sense.

I realised that all the times I experienced stress and questioned my teaching abilities…it now all made sense.

I realised that all the times I suffered loss and went through unimaginable pain… it now all made sense.

I realised that all the times I was unsure of just how effective my bereavement support was over the years…it now all made sense.

I realised today, all these experiences were just different pieces of my lifes mosaic…and I’m now beginning to see the full design, it is beginning to make even more sense Alhamdulillah.

With tears in my eyes, I make shukr to Allah swt.

I thank Him swt for all my tests and trials.

I thank Him swt for allowing me to be of service to Him swt.

‎الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ عَلَى كُلِّ حَالٍ

Alhamdulillah ‘alaa kuli haal.

All praise and thanks are only for Allah swt in all circumstances.

We may not realise it when we are going through tests and trials in life but we know that these are all part of a greater plan for us by Allah swt. This doesn’t mean we ask for tests and trials and we should always continue to seek protection from Allah swt from all calamities.

May Allah swt protect us from life’s tests and trials, aameen.

May Allah swt ease the suffering of all who are going through any difficulty and ease their suffering swiftly and successfully, aameen.

If you require bereavement support, contact the Muslim Bereavement Support Service: Tel:02034687333,

Feel free to follow on social media: (@mbss5oaks)

Musings of a Mother | My beloved “her”.

Today I sat in her room and took a moment to remember her as a baby…as a toddler…as a small child. SubhanAllah! How the time has flown by!

I was having a super busy day trying to get up to date with the chores and had popped into her room to do something.

It was a rare opportunity I found to be able to just sit on her bed, stop and ponder. Alhamdulillah.

I looked around at her shelves, the notices she had clumsily stuck on her wardrobe (must buy her a cork board!) and her bits and pieces lying around.

Where once she had shelves filled with fairytales and stories about animals were now replaced with authors such as Snicket, Morpurgo and Horowitz. Books of mysteries and adventure.

Her toys had been exchanged for jewellery and stationary and complex pieces made with lego (yes, shes an absolute fan!). And there was not a “my little pony” in sight!

Where once had been her dolls house now lay a prayer mat and cushions she used as a little reading nook.

I felt sad. SubhanAllah.

In a blink of an eye her entire childhood had passed me by and now she was steadily (often moodily) transitioning into her teen years. MashaAllah.

I felt a mixture of sadness, anxiety and excitement. I guess that is parenting in a nutshell, sometimes remembering how they used to be, worrying constantly about anything and everything to do with them at present and on rare occasions feeling excited at the person they are becoming.

Our lives are so busy we sometimes forget that everything is changing including our own families.

As Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī once said, “this moment is all there is“.

A reminder to myself and then to others, dont forget to take these moments in and make them moments you and your loved ones will remember. Nothing lasts forever, this is the way of this life. Everything moves forward, one day our children will grow up and have their own lives inshaAllah, just as we grew into ours. Alhamdulillah.

To my beloved her, I miss those moments that have gone and I worry all the time about you and the challenges you face but I am so excited about the person you are growing into! Alhamdulillah.

May Allah swt always protect, guide and bless our children with success. May they always be happy, healthy and blessed with true imaan. Aameen.

Musings of a Mother | The start of a beautiful journey – Quran memorisation!

MashaAllah TabarakaAllah! Our hifdh journey is on its way and our two eldest have completed memorisation of Juz Amma- the 30th part of the Holy Quran.

There is still a long way to go and as I always tell the children…recitation, memorisation and revision will be a part of their daily routine for the rest of their lives inshaAllah.

As a parent, I also have learnt so much. I had no experience of hifdh and honestly speaking really didn’t have much idea of what I was doing. Surprisingly, I have found at times to have experienced moments of self-doubt about whether I was able to guide and support my children sufficiently, at times waves of exhaustion due to other “life” things happening and wondering if we should continue as well as flickers of hope – that “yes, inshaAllah we can do this!”. To be honest I still sometimes wonder at what I’m doing and if its the right way…

One thing is for sure, it has bonded me with my children in a way I never imagined and could only dream of and inshaAllah will continue to do so! I would say to anyone out there considering taking this journey either for yourself or your children, just say “Bismillah” and go for it! If our intentions are pure and for the sake of Allah swt then Allah swt will grant blessing in it inshaAllah.

For whoever is undertaking this blessed journey, may Allah swt make it easy, swift, smooth, correct, fulfilling and full of rewards beyond imagination. Aameen ya Rabbul Alameen! ❤️

Musings of a traveller | Istanbul

SubhanAllah from all the places I have visited so far, magnificent Istanbul is still top of the list!

I hope this brief post about my recent five day trip there gives some insight and help to anyone thinking of visiting inshaAllah!

Day 1:

On my very first day I headed straight for Sultanahmet Mosque aka The Blue Mosque. An absolute must see, though some parts of it are being refurbished, it really makes you appreciate the time,cost and effort the government must take to look after such beautiful historical buildings.

Free to enter, anytime for muslims (during prayer times) and for everyone else at other times. Modest dress is required.

Right opposite the Blue Mosque is the Hagia Sofia aka Aya Sofia in Sultanahmet.

The entry fee is 60TL (£8.50) p/person, definitely well worth it!

The Hagia Sofia used to be a church and later became a mosque, hence the combination of the Christian murals and ornate Arabic calligraphy.

My favourite section is inside towards the front, right above where the mimbar is. You will see that a mural of the Virgin Mary and baby Jesus has been left untouched from when it used to be a church and on either side there is beautiful arabic calligraphy with “Allah” on the right side and “Muhammad” pbuh on the left. I don’t know why but this really caught my heart, almost as if the mural has been left there as a sign of respect to all who love and believe in Mother Mary and baby Jesus, peace be upon them both.

As you walk on past the Hagia Sofia, you will find the tombs of the Sultans behind Hagia Sofia, a very peaceful place.

Free entry but modest dress is required.

Day 2:

The second day was all about the amazing Topkapi Palace. Full of fascinating courtyards, many different purpose built ornate buildings and surrounded bu glorious views of the grand Bosporous sea.

It costs 95TL (£13.50) p/person including a visit to the harem- which is well worth it!

Part of the “Harem” which housed the Sultans private chambers and bedrooms.

The palace also has a privy chamber, this is where Prophets peace be upon them and sahabas (r.a) artefacts are kept including Prophet Muhammad SAW beard hairs, sword and tooth.

It also houses the swords of all 4 caliphs as well as the companions Ammar, Jafar and Khalid bin Walids (ra) swords. On display is also Prophet Dawud AS sword, Prophet Musa AS stick Prophet Yahya AS imama and arm armour. Bibi Fatima r.a clothes and Hadhrat Hussain r.a clothes, but unfortunately no photography is allowed so below is a picture of the exterior.

Day 3:

On the third day of my stay I decided to visit the Prince Islands- just off the coast of Istanbul. About an hour and a half journey, I took the local ferry from Eminonu ferry station which only costs about £1.50 for return in comparison to €25 charged by tour agents! Do not be fooled! Its a comfortable ride that gets you to your destination, you can even but hot/cold drinks on board and it still wont burn a big hole in your pocket!

Above you see the quaint little island of Buyukada – the largest of the Prince Islands.

Day 4:

On the fourth day of my visit I discovered this hidden gem of a place called the Museum of Turkish and Islamic arts.

What a fantastic place! SubhanAllah!

There are majestic, handwoven rugs and the most gorgeous rosewood furniture inlaid with precious pieces of mother-of-pearl work displayed. I loved this place, I could’ve spent way longer then I actually did and even then I was there for quite some time!

The entry fee is 35TL (£5) p/person, definitely well worth a visit!

Huge, handwritten and beautifully ornate holy Qurans at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts. It also houses some amazing sacred Islamic artefacts including many beard hairs of our beloved Prophet SAW , pieces of the cloth from the Holy Kabah, hand written Quran pages, entire Qurans and books of seerah from 7th century onwards and a lot more. A lot more peaceful then Topkapi Palace- so great place to study and appreciate the sacred artefacts in a peaceful and quiet environment.

Above you can see “The Damascus Documents” (historical handwritten pages of the Quran) at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic arts.

Day 5:

I visited the mosque of Hadhrat Abu Ayub Ansari r.a. He was a companion of our beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW.

Free to enter, modest dress required.

Outside the tomb of Hadhrat Abu Ayub Ansari r.a. A peaceful place, astoundingly reminded me a lot if the Holy city of Madina. Even though there were many many visitors, there seemed to be a covering of calm over the entire area, a very spiritual and life reflecting place.

May Allah swt grant all our beloved deceased forgiveness and bless them with Paradise- aameen.

Day 5:

Up on a hill is the grand Suleymaniye Mosque. A structure showcasing magnificent and awesome architecture-definitely worth a visit. It is free to enter but as it is a place of worship modest dress is required.

Around the corner is The Grand Bazaar where all your souvenir and shopping needs can be met- but do make sure you bargain! Start with a third of price asked and only pay up to half of original price and no more! It takes some skill but you will get there inshaAllah!

All in all, Istanbul is a beautiful city full of history and mystery. There is so much to see and experience, great for the youth as well as adults. There are many hotels within walking distance of the main sights and delicious reasonably priced halal food available everywhere. P.s if you are a cat lover, you will love Istanbul on another level!

I ❤️ Istanbul.

Please note all photographs are owned by and cannot be used without permission.

Musings of a Mother | Children & Ramadhan

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ

Alhamdulillah I was asked to do a talk at a conference recently about how to motivate children about Ramadhan. So I did some research and put together a power point in preparation and thought it would be great to share it in a article format on here for others to access and  benefit from inshaAllah. I hope it makes it a little easier for mothers like myself to have relevant and useful information and ideas all in one place rather then having to scroll through pages and pages of the google search engine, especially if they are doing this for the very first time inshaAllah.


Question: How can we encourage children to make the most of Ramadhan? (In a easy, not too time consuming and inexpensive way!)



3) FUN!

But first…


It is narrated on the authority of Umar bin al-Khattab (RA), who said:

“I heard the Messenger of Allah (SAW), say”:

“Actions are according to intentions, and everyone will get what was intended. Whoever migrates with an intention for Allah and His messenger, the migration will be for the sake of Allah and his Messenger. And whoever migrates for worldly gain or to marry a woman, then his migration will be for the sake of whatever he migrated for.“

Related by Bukhari & Muslim


A good action with the wrong intention will not get us any reward in the Hereafter.

But every little action we do such as changing nappies, feeding our children, even playing with them, if it is done with the intention of attaining Allah (swts) pleasure then we will be rewarded.

Therefore looking after our families is an act of ibadah.


…Think about your child/rens behaviour…

Q. What do you think needs to change/improve?

1) Behaviour – some examples…

  • co-operate with siblings
  • more charitable
  • be polite with siblings
  • be more helpful
  • share with others
  • follow instructions
  • practice the sunnah more
  • less screen time
  • compliment others more
  • be more organised


Have a pot/box/envelope (whatever works for you) and have different “deeds” written on strips of paper inside. Pull out a strip each day and do the deed (this is also great for adults too). For ready to cut out deeds, visit:


At the end of the day, get you child to “account” for each day, to self-reflect on how their day was.

1.What was good about it?

2.What could they have done better?

Note: this is something we should also be doing, so why not try to instil this from a young age?


  • Diary
  • Post its pinned onto a board
  • Discussion
  • Evaluation worksheets
  • Routine/behaviour charts
  • Sticker charts and stickers


…Think about your child/rens learning…

Q. What do you want them to learn in Ramadan?

2)LEARNING – Some examples…

  • Fasting
  • Seerah
  • Recitation of Quran
  • Learning Arabic
  • Learning about zakah
  • Memorisation of duas/surahs
  • Learning about Laylatul Qadr
  • Modest dress/hijab
  • Correcting their tajweed
  • Learning about salah
  • Practising their salah
  • Learning about the revelation of the Quran


Choose 1 area and focus on that all the way through Ramadan or choose 3 areas and focus on each every 10 days:

Eg: for my 6 year old son:

First 10 days: Fasting

Next 10 days: Salah

Last 10 days: Laylatul Qadr

Or if you are feeling really ambitious, do focus on something different each day?!!



These and other websites include stories, games, tasks, wordsearch, nasheeds, talks for children and much more!









3) FUN!!!

…Think about what your child/ren most enjoy…

Q. What fun ways can you use to inspire them in Ramadan?

3) FUN – Some examples…


3) FUN – HOW?







A man came to the Prophet and said, ‘O Messenger of God! Who among the people is the most worthy of my good companionship? The Prophet said: Your mother. The man said, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your mother. The man further asked, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your mother. The man asked again, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your father. (Bukhari, Muslim).

Alhamdulillah sisters, we have been granted this great status and it is a blessing and honour, so use your blessed position to seek help from the One who has honoured you.

DUA! DUA! DUA! Ask help from Allah swt for EVERY little thing including being successful in motivating and encouraging our children, not just for Ramadhan but for the rest of their lives.

May Allah swt enable us to be the best we can be as parents to our children and empower our children to become the best of their generation. Aameen!

Please note I have not checked above websites in depth, I strongly advise you to do so before buying/trying etc.

Musings of a Muslimah | Divorce

Recently I attended a short course where I bumped into an ex-student of mine from many years ago.

Her three younger sisters had also been students of mine.

I saw her arrive and as I always do with all my ex-students, looked forward to catching up with her once the course ended.

I approached her and joked if she still remembered me. After asking about how she was I moved onto asking about her sisters. I had remembered that one had married abroad a few years ago and enquired about her.

She looked a little embarrassed to answer, her cheeks blushing, her tone of voice changing and quietly said, “shes ok…she got divorced and came back”. I almost had to lip read it was that quiet…

Honestly, I didn’t flinch, in all my years of teaching and volunteering I don’t really think theres anything that fazes me anymore, but to be honest, why should it? It is not my business and it should not be anyone else’s.

I just responded with further questions about children and was so happy to hear her sister had two, mashaAllah.

I said my salaams and left to speak with others. Later on, I was musing about our conversation and remembering how embarrassed she was.

In reflection, I wish I had said something more to her about it, I wish I had spoken up and said, “don’t feel embarrassed, sometimes there just is no other way and its for the best”.

But “would’ve, should’ve or could’ve said” is pointless if its not said in the right moment.

My point is when we hear of others in such situations, we need to do less to make them feel like outcasts and more to make them feel empowered.

No one chooses divorce easily and though its not an ideal for most families, Islamically its usually a last resort and necessary for all parties involved.

So why is it that families are embarrassed if a member gets divorced? Or that communities make it ok to treat a divorcee as an outcast especially when it comes to remarrying?

If we believe we are all descendants of Prophet Adam A.S and Hawa A.S, this makes us brothers and sisters in humanity and that makes US responsible for each OTHER, so why do we make some individuals lives miserable simply due to their marital status, sometimes not even stopping at the individual but also labelling their families.

This leads me to share another incident that occurred a few days later, and that was of a friend sharing with me how she had received a promising marriage proposal only to have turned it down after her beloved mother was “interrogated” by the grooms mother as to why she was divorced!

SubhanAllah! I mean really!? What has her mothers marital status got to do with her own prospective marriage? I really thought that times have changed and that the stigma attached to divorce was disappearing.

Unfortunately no.

I was devastated to see the effect it had on my friend and her beloved mother, and though her mother said she expected it from people, I don’t see how those questions were acceptable.

Islam allows for divorce when marriages are no longer working as marriages and there are clear guidelines provided which are meant to give justice with kindness between the parties involved in a fair and civil manner.

However, communities just love rubbing it in, don’t they? Its like a stain that in their eyes can never be washed away but that is the peoples way of looking at it and not from our beautiful teachings in our religion of Islam at all.

Alhamdulillah for Islam, and alhamdulillah for the Holy Quran and the clear prophetic guidance that has been granted to us.

May Allah swt make us of those He swt is pleased with, enable us to treat others in the way that pleases Him swt the most, that is with love, open minds, understanding and kindness. Aameen.

Musings of a mother

Whilst sorting through some files, I came across some old photographs of our young children as babies and my husband and I started going through them and reminiscing as you do…

After “oooing” and “aaahing”, he turns to me and says “you did good mashaAllah”.

I should’ve felt pleased or somewhat proud but instead I just felt anxious.

I had a flashback of a conversation with a friend who is a parent of teenagers telling me, “believe me, this is the easy part!”, responding to my complaints about lack of sleep and exhaustion. “The older they get, the harder it becomes…”

Parenting is a challenging journey that seems never-ending, a journey with many highs and lows. But if they grow into believers who are caring human beings, kind to others and humble, then inshaAllah it will be all worth it.

May Allah swt make parenting easy for us, guide us to be the best of parents and bless our youth to be the best of children. Aameen.