At tafsir yesterday, a little girl alongside her brother walked past, crying. She was mumbling “mummy” with each whimper she made and heads turned to look in her & her brother’s direction. Having known this girl, I called on her, hoping to help trace her mother in the crowd. She turned back the moment I called her, to my surprise. I assumed her mood would result in some restraints but it appeared she needed a fast exit out of her tear-shedding and loitering, trying to spot her mother to no avail.

She came to my side and as I looked down at her to tell her not to cry anymore, she touched the watermelon sitting on my bag. She then groped it with amusement in her eyes. I reached for her hand to stop her but she was already smiling by then. She wanted some of it.

The sisters around me were smiling at her reaction as it was rather spontaneous; she was the same person crying a few seconds back. It wasn’t iftar yet so I had to cut out some for her, and for her brother, leaving the remaining portion in the nylon. And Subhanallah! You’d think she wasn’t the same person who wanted her mom a few minutes ago. Before I gave it to her, I paused to ask her if she was fasting. She is about 3/4 years old and rather too small to fast for a complete day but I just wanted to ask still. Lol. She nodded immediately with her hands still stretched towards the watermelon and she said ‘yes! I am fasting.’ But I couldn’t laugh with the sisters observing around us, she was impatient for any form of interrogation.

When she was almost done munching what was with her, she reached out for the other half with a juicy hand. My dress was already getting its share of the fruity bath too, but what could I do? Children are a blessing from Allah and besides, we all were once children; eating noisily and carelessly as well. I just needed to play mummy for a few minutes so I condoned their craving.

She wanted the other part. I tried talking her out of it but she wouldn’t even let me. She held on to the watermelon tightly and she said “kenkele. I want only kenkele I will not take everything. Gimme more now.” But did I even have a choice? Her brother was also behind, gulping down the last of the fruit with him and so I divided the rest of the fruit and gave them the smaller part. She took hers joyfully and ate it up and her brother also took his, taking his time to devour it patiently, like he did the first time.

As she dropped the back of the watermelon, she took off without looking back. She went over to the ‘high table’ and was shaking hands with each sheikh one after the other even as the tafsir was still on. ☺ Kids! They have no worries at all. Her brother stayed put until he finished his and then he showed me his hands; as a way of telling he was through and ready to leave. He went over to join his sister, forgetting he was looking for mummy too, like his sister.
Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with
him), said:
I never saw anyone who was more
compassionate towards children than Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him). His son Ibrahim was in the care of a wet nurse in the hills around
Madinah. He would go there, and we would go with him, and he would enter the house, pick up his son and kiss him, then come back. (Muslim)
Show love and compassion towards children. Laugh, play and have little chats with them. It is odd to say it’s a “female thing” to be fond of children as the prophet, our exemplary character, was ever compassionate towards children. May Allah grant us all offspring that would bring coolness to our eyes and ease our path to Jannah. Ameen

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