City of Brass

City of Brass


sleepwalking through Ramadan

posted by Aziz Poonawalla

The first week of Ramadan is often the hardest, posing the greatest challenge (both mental and physical) of integrating Ramadan into our lives. While it would be easy to claim that we simply “turn on Ramadan” like a light switch, in reality like anything else there is an initial period of borderline chaos while we adapt. The decreased energy during the day from fasting hits us hardest this first week, though after a few days we are mostly acclimated. More challenging is making the right adjustments to our routines – especially sleep, which in our modern hectic lifestyles is often the first thing we sacrifice. But the importance of getting enough sleep in Ramadan is paramount, both in terms of going to bed early to help offset the earlier waking time, and also trying to find time for an afternoon nap or downtime to recharge for the evening. In fact sleep tends to be my greatest challenge, far more than food, in Ramadan – especially since I am forced to go without my habitual caffeine addiction. Most of the year, we don’t get enough sleep as it is, and use Starbucks as a crutch to get by; during Ramadan we are required to walk further and throw the crutch away. And yet, we succeed. The real question is, why can’t we maintain that beyond Ramadan? There’s really no excuse for perpetuating the good sleep habits, and reduced caffeine intake, beyond the holy month.

Starbucks isn’t helping. The Pumpkin Spice latte comes out on September 1st.



  • Rabia

    This is my third Ramadan, and, so far, it’s the easiest, but it’s true: this year, sleep is my hardest challenge. Food is easy–I’m poor enough that eating once a day is pretty much my norm. Thirst is harder–I’m aware of how dry my mouth is most of the day, but it’s possible to ignore it. Caffeine isn’t an issue for me–I broke that addiction two years ago, but I do see my friends suffering. Sleep–well, when can I sleep? We’re far-enough north that sunset and sunrise are only a few hours apart. When you’re self-employed, aas I am, it’s too easy to sleep during the day and feast at night, with no regard for earning an income.
    You can make your own Pumpkin Spice Lattes, btw. It’s just a normal coffee-with-milk with Pumpkin Spice Syrup added, lol. If you make them yourself, you get to use a better grade of coffee bean than Starbuck’s…

  • Fajri

    We establish many good habits during the Holy month. Most of which we loose as it ends. We need to realize tha the Ho;y month allows us the opportunity to see the worldly vices we can do with out as long as we rely on ALLAH

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