Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed: This Eid will be special, for some reasons

A sense of community is essential for everyone and is something I have missed so much, as have my children.

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I am excited to celebrate Eid-al-Adha with friends and family this Saturday, for the first time in three years. Since the start of the pandemic, I have been more cautious than most, for reasons related to my own and my father’s health, strictly observing public health guidelines and seeing relatively few people. Over the past two years, we’ve done Eid doorstep deliveries, sidewalk greetings, and backyard gatherings.

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However, the fact that my family and I managed to contract a severe case of COVID while recovering from major surgery has made me feel less at risk at this time.

It seems almost everyone we know has had COVID in the last three months, which is not surprising given the recent spike in numbers.

With my new boost in immunity and public health measures lifted, I look forward to enjoying the next few months. Even if I’m not invulnerable, my chances of avoiding infection for the next while are better and I feel like bingeing on everything I’ve been avoiding and depriving myself of. I start planning to see family and friends at the Eid prayer. A sense of community is essential for everyone and is something I have missed so much, as have my children.

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The fact that Eid falls on a Saturday is very special because, for most, it will not require taking time off from work, something one has to do if one’s religious holidays do not coincide with legal ones.

This Eid, like the last, in addition to traditional prayers at local mosques, a prayer will also be held at the AllBall Center in Dorval, an indoor basketball training facility. We gather there not only because it is a large space, but because it facilitates informal social interaction after the religious service. My son loved playing basketball with other friends and cousins ​​after his morning prayers last Eid. For adults there is space to chat and have a snack without fear of being hit by a stray ball.

Barbecues, Eid pool parties, and tea parties are other relatively new practices that our friends have embraced when it comes to celebrating the holiday with their loved ones. While the religious essence of the holiday remains unchanged, there is no reason not to Americanize the way we enjoy and honor it.

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There are also several public festivals sponsored by mosques and Muslim community organizations.

Growing up as Muslim kids in Montreal, we had none of that to look forward to. It’s it takes a community to make these things happen, and pplanning Eid festivals was not something my parents’ generation had the time or energy to do. His concern was to put down roots in a new country and work to support his children after, in most cases, leaving his entire family behind. These were sacrifices that helped weave the fabric of our country. Now, we children of that generation, who have grown up here, been educated here, and are giving back to this society, are in a position to cultivate new memories for our children and the community at large.

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It is true that as a child, I would have been shy to talk about my culture or religious traditions. I was intimidated by these things and because of the color of my skin. And if I were to bring South Asian food for lunch, they would ask me if I ate curry all day. My goal was to avoid being “other.”

Now, I feel comfortable with my identity as a Muslim Canadian and Quebecer. And I couldn’t be more proud now to share a glimpse of what our Eid celebrations will look like. To those who will be celebrating, Eid Mubarak.

Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed is the founder and editor-in-chief of CanadianMomEh.coma lifestyle blog.



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