As my husband so lovingly pointed out to me on Saturday afternoon, there are only 8 weeks left until our wedding. And while for the most part this idea is bringing me a lot of joy, excitement and happiness, I do find myself from time to time panicked and grief stricken with thoughts of, “I only have 8 more weeks in Michigan???”
I know for most of my life I thought life in Northville… forget that, life in Michigan was boring and mundane at best. But now that I have to leave this little town in Southeast Michigan nestled between 5 & 8 Mile, I am sad.
So to commemorate my time… or rather my life in Michigan, I will be periodically posting about all the things that I love about life in Michigan.
Two weeks ago I was in Illinois during my Spring Break running some wedding errands with my husband. This was I think… my fifth time visiting him where he lives since our marriage in November of 2006. I’m adjusting well, (I think–alhumdu’lillah) with his family and the surrounding area. But there is one place where I think I feel the most awkward and isolated. It’s also the worst place to have this feeling: at the masjid.
Now you may be wondering how could I feel that way when I go to a masjid? Well, it’s simple: I don’t know a single person! Not one face is recognizable or comforting. And compared to where I grew up, that is a major change and it isn’t one I’m taking easily.
I have had the great fortune of being raised in one of the most wonderful communities of Southeast Michigan. I have been a proud member of MCWS since it’s beginnings in 1988. I grew up at my masjid on the corner of Palmer Rd and Haggerty. I know all the auntys and uncles, and they all know me. I know all their kids, their kids’ spouses, and even their kids’ kids. I’ve attended Sunday School there, YMFA, thursday halaqas, weekend seminars and fundraising dinners. I’ve prayed tarawih year after year after year in the masjid with the beige and brown carpet, the masjid with the maroon cloth divider, the masjid that was expanded, the masjid that was a classroom, and the masjid where I got married. I’ve run up and down the rows and played batman, football with a closed pair of socks, frozen tag, TV tag, ball tag, and every other tag you can think of. I’ve walked to the drinking fountain with friends, giggled in the wudu room, and roamed the parking lots well after maghrib. I’ve sat on the sidewalks outside and in the corners inside during qiyams in Ramadan. I’ve cooked in the kitchen, I’ve served food at the tables, I’ve folded up chairs, and I’ve rolled out table cloth. I’ve said salaam to each and every single smiling face and actually known who I was talking to. I’ve loved that masjid with every part of my heart and I am sad I have to leave.
I know that I will adjust to a new community, and I’ll make new friends and new memories. But the ones I have from MCWS are ones I will cherish and think about everytime I go to a masjid in Illinois.
MCWS, I heart you.