AS the nice summer months are upon us so is the wedding season. And as I look at the new couples and see the light in their eye and the skip in their walk I canâ€™t help but feel a warmth in my heart and a kind of nostalgic feeling. As some of my friends and I were sitting around one day discussing this very topic we were reminiscing about our own early days of marriage and what a tranquil time we had. We all recalled that period of our life as one of the most precious memories of our lives. It was a time of a new change in our lives, it was so wonderful to feel free and loved and belonging to someone all at the same time. As Muslims since we have a very sheltered and restrictive life from the opposite gender, we are still nevertheless humans. And when we marry for us it is as if our mate is our boyfriend or girlfriend and we live for some time in a bubble where the only thing we focus on is our mate. As women we want to cook wonderful foods for our husband, we want to dress nicely, and our husbands they wanted to spend time with us. They would also dress nicely for us. They would ask what we wanted to do, what we would like to eat and where we would like to go. It was as if we only existed to make each other happy.
Unfortunately this lasts for at most for 2 years or fades as the first gift, the baby, from Allah arrives. And slowly for the husbands their careers take the front seat, especially if they are ambitious, and for wives their children become their sole concern. For the same wives who once labored tirelessly to create the most wonderful dishes and create masterpiece desserts and cakes, now making sure their husbands have their meals is a chore which somehow needs to get done, and shortcut recipes and strategies are always being hunted for. Everything else takes over our lives, so that we have no time for each other anymore, and if we did then culture also steps in and creates a hurdle. Most of our culture teaches us to always place the children, the job, the in-laws, the community, and anything else in the world as more important than the relationship of husband and wife.
IF a couple are ever asked to leave their children to attend a function, their first notion would be not to go, or to have one of the parents stay home with the children, and if by some fluke they did end up leaving the children alone they would feel so guilty the whole time that they might as well not have gone at all.
It is not that the couple does not want to spend time with each other, rather it is that custom starts dictating what is right and wrong. They start focusing on things like, â€œOh we are too old for that kind of stuff now,â€ â€œNow it is time for the children, who has time for romance?â€ However, many spouses still long for the long-ago feelings and what I have found is that it is mostly the wives who are in this boat.
However, in researching the life of the Prophet (s), I saw that even in this aspect if we were to follow his sunnah, our lives would be so much more fulfilling.
The Prophet (s) would spend so much time with his wives and he would spend it with them happily. He would help them in their housework. He would play sports with them. He was kind and gently and very loving towards them. And he was the Prophet (s)!!! If anyone in this world ever had a good excuse for not spending time with their wives it would be the Prophet Muhammad (s), the Great Messenger who brought us the message of Islam and then spread it.
In order to cement his marriage bonds, the Prophet applied language to instill love and happiness in the hearts of his wives. Instead of calling her Aisha, he would call her Aaish. He conveyed messages and greetings of peace to them from Angel Gabriel as reported by his wife Aisha. (Bukhari)
The Prophet (s) is the best example of a loving husband. Aisha (ra) talked about the times when she enjoyed meals with him. He enjoyed his meals only when she sat next to him. They drank from one cup and he watched where she placed her lips so that he could place his lips on the same area. He ate from a bone after she ate and placed his mouth where she had eaten. She also said that he placed morsels of food into her mouth and she would do the same. (Muslim)
When the Prophet (s) left his house–even as he left to pray in the Mosque–he used to kiss his wife. (Abu Dawud and Tirmidhi)
Aisha (ra) accompanied the Prophet (s) on a trip. She and he were at the back of the group. They heard the guides in front calling them and others to move faster. The Prophet (s) challenged her to a race. She beat him. Then, later, on another trip, he challenged her again. This time he beat her. Aisha (ra) said that she was slender when she beat the
Prophet (s). When she put on weight, he knew he was going to beat her and therefore he challenged her the second time. (Ahmad)
We need to learn from our great Prophet (s). Dear sisters, it is okay to leave your children with a babysitter maybe twice a month, and to go out with your husband. Try to dress up for your husband. When he comes home, wear nice clothes and cook a wonderful meal, do your hair, wear nice perfume, believe me he will like it. It is not good only to keep asking for time, we can take some matters in our own hands. Our husbands work hard and some have some incredible responsibilities, and if we took the initiative, they would appreciate, and in turn reciprocate. Maybe some ladies who are close friends can set up a timetable and take turns in watching each others children on so that the one couple can have â€œdate.â€ It is important to take time for yourselves. It is for Allah too, as it would give you pace and happiness and make you strong mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.