I was never a raya person, I do not find raya visiting fun ever since I was in secondary school. The only day I found important, was the first day of eid. This day was when I got to meet my grandparents, uncles aunties, cousins, nieces and nephew, all at the same venue. That, was the only moment that I looked forward to. The remaining 29 days? No. My parents had given up on me and just left me at home while they do their rounds.
There were some relative’s homes I have made an exception and must visit as they played a big role to where I am today. Yes, I have my favorites.
I never understood why people will make a huge fuss when one did not visit their home and made into a huge issue. I also never understood how people can go on with visiting till very late at night (early morning even). I figured out if I would be so unhappy in following, I would rather just do housework. My parents would always threatened me to clean the house or cook if I did not want to follow, thinking I would dread my decisions later. The thing is, I did not. Instead, I must thank them for this, cause after years of staying home, I had mastered organizing, cooking, baking and multi-tasking at fingertips.
This year is different. This year, I tried very hard not to let the grinch in me surfaced too much. It is, Nadra’s first raya after all.
I was worried on how she would react with all the unfamiliar faces, loud surrounding and rather humid environment. I was also scared if she would turned very cranky due to irregular naps. Nadra does not nap easily, especially in an unfamiliar environment. She looks around, registers all her surroundings first, and that usually takes quite awhile.
We prepared her in mostly cotton kurungs, brought her toys and snacks.
She was surprisingly well-behaved despite having short naps (in the car!). She mingled more with kids. It did took awhile before adults could approach her and play. There were definitely no melt-down nor wailing. However by evening, she started to get agitated. That was understandable, even I started to feel uncomfortable. Despite many objections, we made a point of heading back by 8pm. There is no such thing as “alah, raya ape. Setahun sekali aje…” . Will they be looking after an overly tired and cranky baby? Will they be the one looking after a baby who wakes up 4 times at night? No. So, 8pm was our limit.
I wouldn’t say Nadra hates raya. She does not love crowds but she sure loves receiving all the packets which she holds dearly once received.
Wishing all muslims Selamat Hari Raya.