'I took fast without telling my parents'
This was the first time ever he kept a full day Ramadan fast.
This Ramadan will forever be special for seven-year-old Aariz Talha, as this was the first time ever he kept a full day Ramadan fast.
"And that too without milk," he excitedly told Khaleej Times.
"I have been wanting to fast ever since I learnt that this is one of the ways of pleasing Allah. I want to go to Paradise and the only way we can get to it is by impressing Allah...So although my parents said that I still have a couple of years to begin fasting, I thought why not try now as I felt a deep desire to fast for my Lord."
Speaking candidly just after ending his first fast, an overjoyed Aariz said that "it wasn't easy. "It was tough as I am too used to having my milk thrice a day and I am unable to sleep without having milk. So this was the first time ever that when my caretaker Johaira offered me milk, and I said no, I am fasting."
"My parents thought that like always I would fast half-day and then eat something at lunch. They could not imagine that I would actually fast until sun-down. My mom said just try if you can but eat if you feel very hungry. But I was determined to complete my fast and I did."
Aariz's mother Irum Siddiqui said she was surprised when Aariz and their domestic help Johaira told her at Iftar time that Aariz had kept a full day fast.
"We were invited for Iftar at my brother's place that day and on our way Aariz told us that he had actually kept the full fast. Since this was unplanned, we got his favourite ice-cream cake from Baskin Robbins to celebrate with the whole family gathered at my brother's place."
His sister Aiza said: " Aariz was really quiet all day and was not screaming as he normally does. I kept him busy during the day with cartoons and other videos he likes so that he doesn't feel the hunger.
Aiza said that one of Aariz's friend, Keshav (a non-Muslim), was so fascinated at seeing his friend fast that the next day he decided to fast too. In fact, Keshav, his dad and mom also fasted.
A grade 2 student of The Millennium School, Qusais, Aariz said: "I planned my first fast on a Friday, as it's an auspicious day, and I got up so excited at Suhoor that even my parents were surprised. I prayed all the five prayers on time but couldn't pray Taraweeh as I almost slept out of exhaustion by that time."
Talking about the toughest part of his first fast, Aariz said : "Although I was excited to fast, getting up for Suhoor was quite a challenge. Also, as the day progressed and I began playing and running, I realised I was feeling hungry and thirsty, so I lay down. But as the Iftar time approached, I was so happy and excited that I prayed fervently to Allah to accept my prayers, my fast and give me the things I wanted.
"I love being unique and this was my 'unique' way of thanking Allah for blessing us with such a good life. This is the most special occasion of my life as not only I earned Allah's pleasure but also earned so much appreciation from my family and friends."
Since Aariz had kept his first fast without informing his parents they couldn't really celebrate it, however, they gifted Aariz his favourite football star action figures and promised they would celebrate his first fast next year in a grander way.
The seven-year-old ended his fast with milk and then went on to try his next favourite Iftar dish, frymes (ready-to-fry pellets) before lying down on the sofa for some rest. " I felt exhausted but also thrilled that I managed to keep my first fast this Ramadan."
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