When Mistakes Happen

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


Nobody is perfect. We’re all trying to attain this thing… this thing called ‘perfection’. We live in a society that teaches us that our worth is based on how we look. On how attractive we can be. We strive for perfection. This unattainable state that we strive for … it has to be known that… its not natural.

I mean, why do you think lipo-suction was invented? Botox? Plastic surgery? This facade that runs in this world, like a 24-hour screenplay, is just that… Its not real. The pursuit of perfection limits our ability to be present and literally robs us of the vitality of life. It is unachievable, unimaginable, and frankly undesirable, so why pursue it? This idea that we are supposed to be perfect, is a huge lie. Because this world was not meant to be perfect. Everyone has flaws. Scars. Things that take away from that thing we call perfection.. and make it.. real.

And I think I need to emphasize it. Even when it comes to our character. Our deeds. Our misdeeds. What we achieve, and what we don’t achieve.

Yes, we strive for our best but being perfect does not mean that we are religious. Being on the perfect faith, despite its beauty, does not mean that we have to be perfect.

And this is the trap of Shaytaan. He tries convincing us that if we’re not worshipping Allah in a perfect way, then we might as well not bother trying at all. So if someone isn’t praying all thier prayers or isn’t praying at all, when they finally do stand up to offer a prayer, he will make them think, “Who am I kidding? Why should I even bother? Why would God accept my prayer now?”

Or if a woman is thinking of wearing the hijab but doesn’t cover up perfectly… or sins in certain ways, he will make her feel, “What’s the point in wearing it now?”

And it has to be said. We are not perfect. We make mistakes. A lot of them. Sometimes, we make the same ones, over and over. But this is, precisely, the characteristic that what makes become so beloved to our Creator. Allah does not say that His most beloved are those who don’t make any mistakes. The ones with that honor, are those who make the mistakes, and then turn to Allah in repentance.

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “All of the children of Adam are sinners, and the best sinners are those who repent.

Source: Sunan al-Tirmidhī 2499

And yeah, I’ve made my fair share of mistakes right? I mean, I’ve done some stupid things. I’ve made irresponsible choices. I let my heart rule my decisions. I’ve messed up some of my life because of it. But everyone makes mistakes. I just had a helluva lot to learn. 

“Where are they?”

My mother stood in front of me with her hands on her hips and a look of annoyance on her flawless face. I put my phone down for a minute as I looked at her, knowing Shabeer’s new message could wait. The only thing was with my mother, mistakes were unacceptable.

“Mum, they’ll be here just now,” I said, in the calmest and most composed voice that I could.

Gosh, sometimes my mother was a living test of patience.

“How inconsiderate,” she said now, opening the pot to check on the curry that was simmering.

The smell of prawns was making me feel a bit queasy, but I breathed out and rolled my eyes, hoping my mother wouldn’t see me.

“Mum, they’re newly married,” I said slowly, hoping she would get it this time. “They need to spend time together too. Adam did say not to wait for him.”

I knew that Adam had left early the morning after the function for business, and having only returned earlier today, I could imagine he wanted to spend some time with his new wife. Obviously, I didn’t ask him any of the details but I knew that they had spent their first night apart and their little time that had together was interrupted by Hannah’s gatecrashing.. which I felt immensely guilty about.

I sighed as I noted my mothers pout.

”Mum,” I said, my patience dwindling. “Just dish out.”

”No,” she said stubbornly, pursing her lips in that irate way that she usually did. “We will eat together.”

I gave up. Like really. What else did she expect of me?

Instead of opening my mouth and causing a scene, I took a walk to the calendar on the fridge, with Zaydaan planted on my hip, because that was precisely his sole aim for the past few weeks, because even two meters distance from me was too much for him.

I didn’t understand it. Boys. The entire male species were so needy.

I ignored mother’a muttering from behind me, turning a deaf ear and counting the days on the calendar.

One… two…. three…

I paused, breathing in.

No. It couldn’t be right.

I sucked in my breath as I counted again. And again. And a fourth time too.

And oh my goodness, I was absolutely appalled .

Twelve days. I was a whole 12 days late and I didn’t even know. What on earth was going on…?

I sucked in my breath as I tried to drown out my mothers voice,that was still going on about children and how overrated they are. She was kind of adding fuel to the fire.

I was panicking. Really panicking. I felt like something toxic was was rising up my chest, and there was nothing I could do about it.

Bloody Hell. 

Again, I had forgotten my reminders to myself. Yes, I had slipped a bit. Yes, I had been a bit negligent. Obviously, letting Shabeer back into my home and life was probably not such a great idea after all.

Patience. Gratitude.

Tawakkul, right? Or Was I just abusing the entire concept?

I sighed. And of course, I felt terrible.

I mean, there were people in the world who were struggling to fall pregnant, and here I was, on the brink of tears because I was almost certain that there was another baby on the way. How on earth was I going to manage? How could I be so stupid?

Aaah,” my mother’s voice suddenly said as she glanced at the camera, and it was like I was hearing a completely different woman now. I actually had to turn and look, to see if it was really her speaking. “They’re here!”

I took a deep breath and exhaled, hoping that some of the anxiety would escape in the process. I honestly did not know how I was going to go through this. I felt like I was going to burst into tears at any second.

I pulled myslef together as I heard the pitter patter of bare feet running from the porch, simply because my boys knew the sound of Adam’s sports car from roads away.

“Heyyyy! As-salaamu-Alaykum..!”

I heard Adam’s voice almost immediately as the door was yanked open by my older two. I forgot my own drama for a moment and made my way to the entrance hall as their voices rose. Of course, they were ecstatic.

“How are my two giant monkeys?”

The boys giggled as Adam placed the box he was carrying down with a huge grin, and they immediately attacked it, like wild animals. Oh my goodness, boys were so uncultured. 

“Hey!” I couldn’t help but scream, as Khawlah came into view and greeted them affectionately, from somewhere behind Adam.

I smiled as I saw her, simply amazed at how beautiful she looked today.

Obviously, meeting my mother was not an event to be taken lightly, and I could see that she had made an extra effort. She wore slightly more attractive colours than usual, and the silk scarf draped around her head was gorgeous. With Khawlah though, as I could see was the case  with the rest of her family, no matter what they wore, they always looked stunning. I wished I had met Khawlah’s mother though… All of her siblings had amazing genes… anf amazing qualities too. And yes, being superficial was a streak I got from my mother. Of course, it was a major downfall, but for my mother, I knew the whole striving to impress would be necessary.

The boys were excitedly obsessing over the toys that Adam and Khawlah had brought for them, and I went forward to greet them too, hoping to ease some of her nerves. Although it wasn’t the first time she was meeting my parents, I could immediately tell that Khawlah was anxious. Of course, I also still felt bad about letting Shabeer to her home and causing havoc… and I knew I needed to apologise to her in person as well.

“How are you?” I asked her, holding her hand tightly as I greeted. I could hear my father coming up behind us too, ad I moved aside as he nodded greeted the two of them affectionately and smiled at the kids.

Of course, my mother was no-where to be seen. All that ranting and raving and now… no sign at all. Typical.

“Howzit Rubes?” Adam said to me, and as he came forward, I almost wanted to cry on his shoulder. Adam just had that intimate way of asking a regular question, that made me want to pour my heart out.

Not now, I reminded myself, trying to keep it together. Don’t spoil today for them.

I had a feeling my mother was already onto the spoiling mission.

If only I had just listened. After all, besides his texts, I hadn’t heard seen in two days. He had made an appearance in the week, convincing me that things with Hannah will be sorted and settled once and for all… and then he disappeared again. I had a feeling she was milking him for cash. Money was always really important to her, and I was actually becoming really annoyed that she was not just backing off and leaving him alone. He had made it clear that it was over…

Stupid, I berated myself. Stupid, stupid girl.

I sighed. I didn’t understand why he was acting like such a doormat. I wasn’t even sure if he was telling me the truth when he said that Hannah’s baby wasn’t his. He had said it was a mistake. I actually didn’t even know what the truth was any more. I wasn’t even sure if I had cared… until about ten minutes ago. My heart thudded uncontrollably as I thought of it. I. Could. Not. Deal.

“Where’s mum?”

Adam’s voice cut through my panicky thoughts as they both looked at me expectantly.

I let out an exasperated sigh.

Now, since you do know a little about my mother already, let me tell you the rest. While my father was easy-going and mostly a pleasure being around, my mother… well, lets just say… wasn’t.  She made things difficult. Incredibly difficult. If she didn’t like someone, she didn’t hide it. If she wasn’t happy with something, she’d make sure you know it. My mother, was, in short… an incredibly outspoken, short-fused and expressive person. In short, her staying away from them was already a signal that she wasn’t very happy.

Err…” I said, scrunching my face slightly as I tried to explain.

“She’s upset, yeah?”

Adam was spot on. She was upset. About what exactly, I honestly didn’t know.

“Let me go and talk to her,” he said, turning to Khawlah and squeezing her shoulder assuringly, before he walked off. I could see that he had a small gift bag in his hand, and I was so glad that he did. A little bribery never hurt anyone.

Khawlah looked at me with a worried look on her face, and I smiled apologetically, asking her how her week was, hoping to kill the tension that was increasing as my mother failed to make an appearance. And then of course, at long last, I heard a shockingly perky voice from the dining hall, calling us to eat.

I seated the kids quickly on the kitchen table, grateful to have Khawlah’s help as they obliged with no fuss at all, loving that she was here. She read their Duaa’ for them, and as I watched her, honestly, I wasn’t sure how she had so much of patience with them. She had an amazing nature. Her ability to just cajole and console them was completely out of this world. Instead of screaming and going crazy on them, like I would never hesitate to do, she instantly turned the entire thing into a game that not only intrigued them, but also got them to eat their entire contents of their plate in no time at all. Maybe it was just easier when the kids weren’t your own.

We took a seat in the next room as my mother and Adam insisted we do so, because well, he needed to make up for being ‘late’. He also said that it was a an etiquette that he learnt from his Molvi for the people to be seated first, before the food was on the table. Despite my father saying he would help my mother, Adam insisted that he would be the one to bring the dishes to the table. That was my brother.  Where I couldn’t care less if my mother was upset about stupid things, Adam had always gone out of his way to ensure that everyone was content. He had an amazing quality that obviously made him a favourite in everyone’s books. I had a lot to learn… a lot that I could rectify.

And of course, the chatter continued as Adam spoke about his trip to a company in Mozambique that he was doing work for, and though I could see that Khawlah and my mother didn’t speak much, it didn’t strike a chord with me. To be honest, even I barely spoke to my mother… so, to put it lightly, it didn’t faze me at all.

Maybe I should have took her prior annoyance as a sign of possible break-down. I don’t know. My mother was usually so “together”. Besides, I was, understandably, a little bit too caught up in my own thoughts to actually pay attention to anything, leave alone the socialising, and leaving my mother’s helper to see to the kids for a bit, I concentrated on trying to put as many nutrients down my throat as possible. I silently willed for it to stay down. I’ve always heard that eating prawns in early pregnancy was not a wise idea… I just didn’t realise exactly why. The fishy smell was unsettling my already queasy tummy.

“So where’s next?” My father asked, always interested in Adam’s visits to especially the more rural countries. It was such an eye-opener when I heard of how basic things were. We were so accustomed to luxury, that we forgot how lucky we were. I wasn’t sure if my mother even listened, because for her, no luxury she had was enough.

Although Adam often went for business only, I know that he recently also hooked up with some people that his Molvi knew, that did work in those countries,  and went out for distribution of packages as well. I admired the fact that he took out time to do it himself. To help people in need. I knew many people who sent money for charitable aid, but to do it yourself was so much more effective. I could only imagine how it changed your heart… made you see things in a completely different light.

“I hope you taking Khawlah with next,” I piped up, and almost wished that I had just sat in my little corner of nausea and just shut my big mouth, because my mother gave me such a death stare that I  swallowed my next words.

I inhaled deeply, fighting the urge to explode on her.

“Well, actually,” Adam said, thankfully not noticing my mothers glare and glancing at me as he spoke. “I have some big news.”

“News?” my mother said, looking from Adam to my father, with a distinct look of unhappiness on her face.

I too, was curious.

“Well, I just got the text when I came back,” he said, his facing kind of glowing. “I’ve told Khawlah that it’s something I’ve really wanted to do and I’d really -”

“You told her?” My mother said, cutting him off and glancing at Khawlah with such venom that I literally wanted to crawl under the table.

“Yeah, mum,” Adam said steadily as he continued. “She’s my wife.”

I was glad that Adam had made it clear but my mother was hearing none of it. There was pin-drop silence before my mother spoke again. Even my father didn’t dare say a word.

“You told her before you told me?”

Okay, this was getting embarrassing. Maybe even a little worse than when Hannah had turned up at the wedding house.

My father had kind of zoned out, in shock. I closed my eyes, wondering if this was actually real. I didn’t even want to look at Khawlah. I almost had to pinch myslef, to check if I was dreaming. Well, rather, nightmare-ing. 

Adam spoke to  my mother steadily.

“Yes, I did,” he said, obviously wondering what the big deal was. “And now, I’d love to tell you, Mum.”

I opened one eye. Now you have to understand, for my mother to appear even in a slight state of discomposure, was a really huge deal. You had to be perfect. On your best behaviour. Right now, my mother’s face looked like she had bitten into a sour lemon.

“Well,” she said in an acid voice, not even giving him a chance to continue. “It’s obvious whose most important now. You can tell your father. I don’t want to know!”

And with that she pushed her chair back with a noisy screech, tossed her hair back as she got up, and simply walked out.

Uh-oh. I cringed, knowing that we’d all have a lot of clearing up to do… and it wasn’t just about the table.

To start off on the wrong footing with my mother was like a death sentence.

Adam had made the hugest mistake ever.

Dearest Readers,

Despite the reality of what happens sometimes when a couple is married.. and the issues that can arise with controlling and difficult mothers, I know everyone is probably wondering whats Adam’s big news.. Any ideas?!

Please note that posts may be a bit slower as we approach the days of Dhul Hijjah. Allah has created some months and days and nights better than others, when rewards are multiplied many times, as a mercy towards His slaves. This encourages them to do more righteous deeds and makes them more eager to worship Him. We make special Du’aa for our Haajis and try to spend these days effectively. 

Allah Swears an oath by 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah, and swearing an oath by something is indicative of its importance and great benefit. Allah says (what means): “By the dawn and by the 10 nights (i.e. the first 10 days of the month of Dhul-Hijjah)…” [Qur’an 89: 1-2]
Ibn ‘Abbaas, Ibn Az-Zubayr, Mujaahid and others of the earlier and later generations, may Allah have mercy upon them, said that this refers to the first 10 days of Dhul-Hijjah. Ibn Katheer, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “This is the correct opinion.” [Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 8/413]
The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, encouraged people to do righteous deeds because of the virtue of this season for people throughout the world, and also because of the virtue of the place – for the pilgrims to the Sacred House of Allah.

May Allah make it easy for us to benefit! Do remember me in your Du’aas!


phet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him):

“He used to sleep early at night, and get up in its last part to pray, and then return to his bed.”

When we have a million things to do, it is easy to fall into a horrible cycle of sleeping late and waking up late.

Break that cycle today! Wake up early and sleep early to be the strong, successful and all that you want to be, In sha Allah.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah!

How easy to practise!

#revivetheSunnahof Sleepingearly






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IG: @thejourneyingmuslimah














Significant Secrets

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


There’ll be moments in your life when you’ll wonder if you’ve done the right thing. When you have second thoughts. There’ll be moments, when no matter how hard you try to convince yourself that it’s all going to be okay, you still feel like the universe is spinning out of control.

And of course, I wasn’t immune to worry. I was scared too. I was scared that maybe… just maybe… I had made the wrong choice. Maybe I was too young. Maybe I had been too impulsive.

And then, just for a split second, I couldn’t help but ask myself; what on earth were you thinking?

But, life’s funny sometimes. We find happiness in unexpected places. We find our way back to the things that matter the most. The universe is funny that way; it just has a way of making sure we wind up exactly where we belong.

The thing is, there is way more beyond the obvious. Allah knows why your heart turned, why you chose something you didn’t expect or why something didn’t come your way. He knows what you don’t see ahead. He can see it, and He knows a bigger picture… something bigger that He is protecting you from.

So, if the one you wanted to marry was taken away from you… Allah knows what He saved you from. Maybe he wasn’t the right person. Maybe it wasn’t the right time. Maybe through the one that ‘got away’, you would have distanced yourself further from your Creator, just to attain that out-of-a-movie kind of love. In your eyes, that person may have been the Mr Perfect for you, but Allah can see beyond your broken heart, when things take a turn for the worst…

That’s the beauty of doing things for the pleasure of Allah alone. You don’t think beyond it. As long as it is to attain His love  and His mercy… every other question is answered. Every requirement is met.

And of course, sometimes you just get caught unaware, when it comes to Allah’s amazing ability to show His wisdom, like I was on the day of my Nikah. The truth was, when I resorted to my Musallah (prayer mat), it wasn’t to show any act of piety. It was because at that moment, I was sinking into despair.

I really didn’t know what else to do. It was a terrible secret that I didn’t want to divulge. And then, as Aadam took a seat next to me, and poured his own heart on the Musallah (prayer mat), just as I was doing a few moments before… it was like all the scattered puzzle pieces suddenly found their matches once again.

He looked at me for a second with that intent gaze that Danyaal sometimes had, and then looked down again.

His hair was covered by a grey topee (prayer hat) and he ran his hands through his beard as I watched him from the corner of my eye, close his eyes pensively, and then raise his hands in front of him without another word.

Oh Allah,” he started shakily with great concentration. “Today you have given us the purest of gifts. Forgive us for our wrong-doings. Perfect our faith, as today… we have fulfilled a major part of it. Bless us with rainbows of happiness… with showers of blessings… floods of laughter… and insurmountable love… Oh Allah, grant us that which is Halaal and pure and good for us. May our days be long… may they be seasoned with faith… Oh Allah, strengthen this bond with Your love and make it a means of attaining You. You are everything, Allah. We are nothing. Without You, we are truly lost. Today is the beginning of the rest of our lives. I ask of You only Allah… through this bond, through Your guidance… we choose to spend today, and all of our tomorrows together… never to walk out… never to give up… till Jannah that we pray with utmost sincerity… you will bless us with…”

And as his voice halted and the Du’aa concluded, his very words summed it all up for me. At that moment, I couldn’t help but understand the great wisdom in what Allah had planned for me. And then of course, as Yunus rapped on the door with great urgency, I couldn’t help but think …

Of course, even at the most sublime moments, there had to be a hitch.

“It’s Hannah,” he said stealthily, his eyes wide. “She’s here.”

And of course, at first I couldn’t believe it. Hannah had arrived with a vengeance, was planted in front of Rubeena’s husband, and yelling her head the man, who I was later told looked like he wanted to make a run for it.

And of course, the entire house was outside gawking at the spectacle, and it was just as well that Yunus had called me, because I could see Ahmed’s newly composed nature slowly dwindling as he witnessed what was going on… and I mentally prepared myself for it too.

And getting ready to face Hannah, in her fit of rage, it was so difficult not to judge her. Yes, she had hurt me. Yes, she had done terrible things along the way. Yes, I truly believed that she deserved every single kick-back that life had given her… but in all honesty, it didn’t mean that I was right.

What was that saying?

Treat cruelty with kindness. Right?

And the treatment is not just a means to an end. When done effectively, the treatment can actually serve as a cure..

Of course… I still couldn’t believe that Hannah had turned up… and her coming was such an unwelcome surprise that I couldn’t help but get a little worked up about it…

Until I got downstairs with Aadam in quick pursuit, only to realize that all that internal venting was in vain because she had just left … with Rubeena’s husband in tow.

And amidst the brutal onslaught that must have taken place, to my right, as I caught sight of the two figures standing there, my heart contracted. Danyaal and Dayyaan stood there in bewilderment… and knowing that they were subjected to that was disturbing.

My heart sank to my toes.

How parents can mess a kid up, and the hurt that they cause to an innocent child within their own incompetence as adults, was unquestionable. The most unsettling ache was truly believing that it is your fault. Believing that everything that was happening was because as a child, you were just in the way.  Because you didn’t listen. Because you had a big mouth. Just because… you were being a kid.

I never wanted Danyaal and his brothers to ever feel that way.

And that’s when I knew I couldn’t just let this go. Rubeena was in tears. Nusaybah was in shock, and Ahmed… well… Ahmed, like his old self, looked like he wanted to kill someone.

After everything, she thought that she deserved to be heard.

Today was the day, whether I liked it or not, that I had to be tough… I had forgotten… after all this time.

The flickering flame still burned on within the heart of a broken warrior. Even the most vicious of set-backs can never extinguish a burning desire. As her horse caved beneath her, the Byzantines were already onto her, capturing her and bringing her back to their camp, where she was put in a prison tent with another group of Arab women who had been captured earlier in the campaign. The Byzantine leader had happened to see Khawlah, and gave orders for her to be brought up his tent later that night. There are claims that the leader of the army had planned to marry her and make her the first lady of Damascus after his defeat of the Muslim forces.

Proudly and furiously, she decided that she would rather die than to live as this man’s companion. This was no ordinary warrior. Without a doubt, no way was Khawlah going to surrender without a fight. Her tactics were recorded in history as she is reported to have gathered the women together to devise a most skillful plan in attaining victory.

Of course, with Allahs help, it was most successful. The women valiantly fought their way out using the poles of the tent, escaped across the battlefield to allied lines, and made it onto safer territory… with the blood of over 30 Byzantine men on their hands. 

And of course, all this would not have been if this heroine had not risen up after being conquered. If she had lay there defeated, after her fall, Khawlah would have been pray to the wolves. She rose up… she fought… she conquered…. and she made a legendary name for herself that women throughout history look up to, just because she was so extraordinary….

And no, I wasn’t scared.. Despite the odds, and despite her continuous strife in bringing me down… I knew that somehow, there had to be a way out. A way out that would make itself known to me when as time went on…

And just as suddenly as everything had been turned upside down, with Hannah coming to rattle our resolve… the evening was soon coming to a close.

Aadam was, in all fairness,  a little perplexed by the events.  He was furious at Ruby, but in all honesty, she didn’t foresee this.

And I understood. I knew what she wanted for her kids, and I knew that she needed him to be there for her too. I just hoped that there was a solution here. Shabeer looked like he still had a lot of baggage from Hannah to deal with, and I wasn’t sure how they were going to work through this.

And of course, despite the feelings that Hannah had brought when she had come… there was a tremendous hope that bloomed in the horizon. When things are done in the right way, no matter what setbacks may come to throw you off, inevitably, everything just falls into place. A little turbulence was always expected.  I was so glad when Aadam too simmered down and forgave his sister when he saw how much effort she had put into making the small supper beautifully simple and conservative, just the way he had requested.

Despite the little thorns that had made their way into our little rose bed since inception, I was simply in awe of what I had been given. I simply couldn’t have asked for a better husband.

He was so easy. Humorous. Patient, understanding, and best of all, there was a quality within him that triumphed all. The fact is that when you finally taste the perfection of Deen, after being starved for so long, you become insatiable. Having newly discovered a light that had been buried somehwhere in the dark, Aadam was so passionate about bringing it into his life in every aspect, that he simply amazed me.

The fact is, as what we think are ‘regular’ Muslims, we forget that  our daily life and our faith are not two separate entities. And I never expected it if this guy who had just recently seen the light, but as I saw more and more of Adams ethics and demeanor, despite the great recognition he had on an international level for what he did in his profession… what he displayed was a unfiltered and beautiful version of Islam that would sway even the hardest of hearts.

We forget that we are the symbols of the most beautiful faith. We forget that we have to represent our beliefs in whatever we do. Whether it be leisure or work… The character that we show in the business world, no matter what profession you are in, is that which can turn hearts and completely change one’s perception of Islam.  It could bring someone else onto the path of Deen.

As for our marriage and everything that came with it, he held fast to the the notion that there was no rush and everything would happen at its own pace.

Live in the moment. That’s what Aadam went by, well before he met me…

And of course, every ‘first’ with Aadam was a beautiful adventure, and for our first ‘date’, as Aadam called it, his game plan was an experience I could never forget. I couldn’t help but admire the beautiful greenery that surrounded the suburb and of course, humored me with little snippets from his life as we made our way, and then melted my heart when he opened the door for me like a real gentleman… honestly, just seeing the reality of this man was an episode on its own.

I almost forgot that I was supposed to be nervous. The lift moved upwards almost in slow motion, and as I awaited the sight of his apartment, which was making me really curious over the past week we had been married, instead, the elevator halted right at the rooftop, catching me slightly unawares. And as the doors slid open, I could barely digest it’s amazement. I stood almost like a statue, gaping ridiculously at the beauty of the setting ahead that swept me away to somewhere near cloud nine.

Amidst the escaping horizon, were beautiful wooden benches, topped with an array of the most gorgeous potted flowers. It’s colors… mesmerised me, as I stared at Allah’s beauty amidst the imminent sunset. From pink tulips to yellow daffodils… It wasn’t just a feast for the eyes, but the sight that was spread before me made my heart leap with joy. How did he even know how obsessed I was with flowers? 

Like a secret garden, fairy lights, in their twinkly beauty, hung from branches of tiny potted trees. The terraced walls were adorned with a thick layer of delighted creeper, and as my eyes made their way through all the overwhelming amazement, they finally settled on the most beautiful two-seat swing that stood at the corner, overlooking the most spectacular of scenery.

“Welcome to the garden,” Aadam’s low voice  cut through my thoughts, with a small smile. “It’s a bit of an apology, but this is the best I can do in an apartment…”

I smiled weakly, even though I could barely move.

“Did you do all this?” I breathed.

I was in awe.

“Well, as you know, my expertise is technology,” he said jokingly. “But, carpentry is my hobby…”

I walked up to the swing, admiring in its smooth finishes and amazing workmanship. Around each rope was a variety of roses, tied carefully to create the most eloquent touch.

Gosh, he could do this for a living.

Build swings. Jungle gyms. Even tree-houses. It would be my dream…

What an amazing secret he had.

It was gorgeously simple, but the gesture that it held was more than its actual wonder.

Aadam smiled at me and of course, I couldn’t help but smile back, properly this time.

”Is this yours?” I couldn’t help but ask. I stretched my hands out, extending them to the gorgeous roof garden and all the greenery that inspired it’s very beauty. I wasn’t sure if it belonged to the building or if….

“It’s ours,” he said, glancing at me almost sheepishly as he awaited my reaction.

I widened my eyes disbelievingly. Wow.

“Sorry I took so long to bring you here,” he said softly, his gaze fixed on me.

I gazed out at the beauty of the sunset that was ahead, revelling in its glory.

“I was trying to get it perfect.”

“And wow,” I murmured without hesitation, awestruck by the perfection of distinct colours that looked like a canvas right before our eyes. I didn’t have a chance to tell him that he didn’t have to get it perfect. Perfection in this world was just a state of mind. The blaze of color – oranges, pearly pinks, vibrant purples… the beauty of that sunset made me want to leap right into it…


Indeed, glory was to the One who created the most astonishing architecture. If only we could comprehend the greatness of Allah. I could sit here for hours, just taking it all in… and it would still not do it any justice

I carefully lowered myself  onto the swing, almost afraid that it’s beauty would perish if I used it, moving to and fro for a few moments as we awaited the call for Maghrib prayer. It seemed like Aadam had chosen the amazing place to stay. In such proximity to a Mosque and with such a stunning view…

I closed my eyes as I felt the wind sashaying through the layers of my hijab, taking in the sound of distant traffic and enjoying its murmur.

It was simply amazing. My heart swelled with joy as I thought of how blessed I was. Indeed, when you can be thankful, you truly feel like royalty.

Moments. This is what life is made of. The moments are what we carry with us, through our journey. An array of moments that bring you to a place that helps you to understand the world, why you are placed here, and everything that comes with it. A collection of memoirs that you will, someday look back on, and although you’ll never capture that exact feeling of elation that it brought, its inspiration will live on for life.


“Hmmmm,” I said, my eyes closed but my senses completely and irrevocably tuned into every scent, sound and touch that surrounded me.

I opened my eyes, soaking it all in, looking at Aadam with an openness that spoke a million words. And just as I was about to tell him the profound thoughts that were racing around my mind like a super-speed train, Aadam’s words came to throw me off completely…

“There’s something I really need to tell you…”

Aisha raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her)  said about the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him):

“He used to sleep early at night, and get up in its last part to pray, and then return to his bed.”

When we have a million things to do, it is easy to fall into a horrible cycle of sleeping late and waking up late.

Break that cycle today! Wake up early and sleep early to be the strong, successful and all that you want to be, In sha Allah.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah!

How easy to practise!

#revivetheSunnahof Sleepingearly






Twitter @ajourneyjournal

IG: @thejourneyingmuslimah

When Words Fail

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


Aadam (AS) slept for a long time. Allah wanted that he have a wife to live with him. He took a rib from him, but he did not wake.

The woman sat by Aadam’s (AS) head and looked at him. She liked him.

When Aadam got up, he saw her and liked her too.
He asked her: “What are you?”

She replied: “A woman.”

He asked: “Why have you been created?”

She replied: “To live with you.”

Some narrations say: “To dwell in tranquility with you.”

As you could imagine, Aadam (AS) was truly happy. The angels asked him about her name.

He said: “Hawwa.” (Eve)

“Why is she named Hawwa?” They asked.

“Because she has been created from Hayy- something living.”

They asked: “Do you love her?”

”Yes,” he replied.

They asked her: “Do you love him?”

”No,” she said.

But her heart was filled to the brim with love for him.

Now that, my friends, was what got me.

Words failed me, when it came to reasoning.

Women, yeah?

And yes, when I finally read the full story of the Prophet Aadam (AS), now I knew why Danyaal loved it so much. It was simply awesome. Mind blowing. The element of profoundness that this brought to life for me was intriguing.

And then of course, despite the theories about a women’s depth and complicated nature, I thought about it more carefully. I stopped. I re-read. I even contemplated.

Was it modesty? Mystery? Just a sense of beauty that made women who they were?

Whatever it was, the value of a woman in our faith is unimaginable. And among the things that we are given Divine guidance, is how we are supposed to live with them. Within what parameters. Within what boundaries. And even when it came to women and their treatment, Allah has too, given us beauty in his boundaries and a wisdom that mankind, by default, does not have.

And of course, the most beautiful part of the story was that Jannah (Paradise), even in its infinite amazement, was not Jannah, until Aadam (AS) had Hawwa,(AS).

It’s no wonder that the beloved Prophet (SAW) so eloquently put forward the utmost treatment of a woman despite whatever she does, and it’s importance.

Abu Hurayrah (RA) narrated that the Prophet Muhammad sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “O Muslims! I advise you to be gentle with women, for they are created from a rib, and the most crooked portion of the rib is its upper part. If you try to straighten it, it will break and if you leave it, it will remain crooked, so I urge you to take care of the women.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari]

And honestly, when I first heard that part of the story, when Hawwa (AS) did not admit her palpable love, I cracked a smile. Even as Danyaal looked at me with his straight face, and ever-so-serious expression, I couldn’t help but chuckle.

And yes, from time to time, I did pick up an actual paper book. With the kids, I actually barely got in any screen time, even for work. Installing software into your brain was just as important, and because I knew it was good for me, I was always willing to be real.

The way my nephew was though, I knew I’d have to probably give him some lessons on how to handle the situation with women when it gets rough. Dealing with the opposite gender when you don’t have the proper know-how is like entering a war-zone with no armour.

Well, at least that’s how it was with the women in my family.

I tried not to think about my mother’s words earlier that week. We hadn’t spoken since then and I was dreading the meeting later that day.

She just didn’t get it. She didn’t understand how far I had come from that unlit place that I was. The thing is, when your life is filled with toxins, the only device that keeps you sane, is more filth. More toxins and more poison. And more. And then, suddenly when you see the light. .. when you finally stop… when you finally make that decision to change, for the first time ever… it’s no longer about just staying sane. When you feel that peace that comes with submission… its like coming up for air, after the deepest underwater dive. It’s an ecstasy that brings you to the height of serenity.

And of course, how could I expect my mother to.

All she knew was the way of life that she had always lived. The chasing, the glitter… and the glam that went with it all.

“Go ahead,” she had said, not very happily. “ Marry her, even though I’m telling you she’s not right for you. I know you and I can see what kind of girl she is. When things go wrong then I won’t hear a thing…”

I felt visibly sick as I looked at my mothers expression. She was so brittle. So hard to please…

Almost like a hard-drive that I couldn’t crack. So difficult to penetrate.

The unbelievable thing was that I knew if I had brought home my previous  girlfriend of a different faith, she would have probably been thrilled. That was my mother. Someone exotic and exciting… to stir up a story in her friends-circle would be her cup of tea.

And though it pained me to see her heart completely sealed off to any goodness that I wanted for her to envisage, I knew that it was completely out of my hands.With the women in my family… I was no match, and I didn’t think that Danyaal stood much of a chance either.

So of course, the time came, that morning of the biggest day of my life, that I had to tell Danyaal and Dayyaan that I was, in actual fact, getting married. The weird part was that the seemed fine with it until it came to the part that the other person who is part of a marriage is going to be Khawlah.

I wasn’t exactly prepared for the reaction I got.

”Really?” Dayyaan said disbelievingly, almost as if I was lying.

I wanted to twist his ear.

”No, you can’t.”

It was an automatic response from Danyaal.

”Why not?” I said, getting annoyed.

I know it was childish, but the kid was making me feel insecure. He didn’t own her.

Danyaal seemed upset. I wonder if the whole marriage thing brought back something  to do with Hannah marrying his father. I wondered if he knew. Kids were so perceptive. Observant. Unfiltered.

His frown was deepening.

“Hey,” I said, pulling myself together like a grown man, and looking into his teary eyes intently. “You’ll still see her. All the time.”

Danyaal looked relieved, and then he looked worried again.

“But she’s so small.”

I visibly flinched.

Wow, this kid really knew how to put his foot in it.

In essence, he was just saying what everyone else wanted to say… but being a kid.. he kind of got away with it.

I mean, I could see the looks some of my family and school friends had given me. The fact that I was barely old either didn’t faze them.

I cleared my throat.

“She won’t stay with me as yet,” was all I said, leaving the conversation at that.

Not that it was any of his business, I couldn’t help but think.

I forced myself to quit being grumpy with the child and forget about my silly insecurities.

But back to the point… that was the thing with Khawlah. She had the patience to answer all their annoying questions, and I truly didn’t understand how. After half an hour, my forbearance was completely depleted. If only my mother could see her with them…

I left them that morning as I headed home to get ready. My best Oud, and a good haircut was what was recommended for the what everyone described as the biggest day of my life thus far. The thing was, guys got scared too. Although I really was worried about taking this somewhat unconventional step in marriage, with us being away from each other, it was also seemingly quite exciting.

There was really no reason to rush anything. I wanted to have the time to get to know her the right way… to spend time with her… and I really wanted to actually date her, even though the concept of dating your wife after marriage was so strange. Well, strangely alluring, but largely unheard of.

And then, just like that, it happened. I mean… i could not even comprehend the depth of a Nikah, yet it’s execution was so simple.

That declaration… commitment… acceptance was an amazing duty that Allah has put on his husband over his wife, where a once sinful thing actually becomes a blessed reward.

And before I knew what I know now, I thought I knew it all.

So let me be honest with you.

In my mindless pursuits of girls I’ve done the bunches of flowers, boxes of chocolates and all the rest that comes with the whims and fancies of what women really want (which I still haven’t figured out)… but it still doesn’t change the fact that because I had always been stuck in virtual reality, when it came down to the real thing… I actually had no idea.

So besides not knowing the ABC’s of sweeping a girl off her feet, I knew that I just had one first chance at this and I was pretty confident that I couldn’t mess it up.

Of course, Rubeena had to be the first to greet my new wife, because that was just Ruby. Despite the fact that I loved my sister to bits, I knew that she loved the limelight and I didn’t want to burst her bubble.

And then of course, came the issue of Shabeer. Not only did Ruby let him back into her home, but she had also had the  audacity to bring him here. And yes, I knew that he was her husband but it didn’t change what he had done. If Ahmed had to know it was Shabeer that was there… the situation was very risky indeed. He had expressed his desire to punch him in the face multiple times.

I smiled and greeted my new father-in law, trying to play it cool. I liked him. He was a nice guy. Serious, and maybe a little daunting, but there was something about him that made me comfortable.

I breathed out, trying to relax. It would be fine. He didn’t know it was Shabeer. All I had to do was act cool and no-one would even guess.

I wished.

“Need some tips,  bru?” Ziyaad said, coming forward with a pretentious smile. “You’re looking like you lost your swag.”

I chuckled, despite me feeling like I was a complete goner.

“Listen, I’ve been there,” he said, giving me a pat on the back. “I know the drill. Don’t talk too much, keep it cool and for goodness sake, keep your pant-”

Hey!” I almost shouted, cutting him off and knowing where he was going with this. Yikes. This guy was embarrassing. 

The truth was, because our parents had been friends in the past, Ziyaad and I went a long way back. It was only recently that we had been re-introduced, and instantly hit it off again, almost as if we had been in contact all along.

He thrust me a Tasbeeh counter, and I grinned as he convinced me that it was the perfect tool to impress the right kind of ladies. It just so happens that some things that you get along the way may serve you well, so I made good use it as he went to talk to my new brother-in-law, and focused on what was important. Mentally preparing myself for the meeting with my new wife.

And then of course, it felt like only minutes later when Ruby came out and my heart rapidly thudded in my chest. It was my turn, and somehow as my legs carried me to the room door, only half-escaping the Aunty who was thrusting a fist of burfee in my face, I took a deep breath, just to calm myself down.

This was big stuff. Big moments.

And how I knew that was that although I wasn’t the most smooth-talking kind of guys, very rarely did a girl make me sweat. Right then, my palms felt as if they had a hole burnt into them, from the millions of times I rubbed them on my Kurta. I was just grateful that Rubeena had chosen a color besides white.

And of course, the trepidation was almost unbearable as I knocked…

Should I go in? Should I wait?

The door was ajar, but it being the first time I met her… I was reluctant as I edged forward in anticipation, waiting for her to let me know it was okay…

And then, of course.., I glimpsed her, in the corner of the room… and my voice just kind of froze somewhere near my oesophagus.

And I’m not even exaggerating.

There I was, deliberating ways to sweep her off her feet when she had completely knocked me off mine.

It’s one thing when a girl renders you speechless, but when her devotion to the Almighty, who made this all possible, comes before anything else… Honestly, the feeling is something like floating on air…

It was no wonder that as my gaze settled on her as she prostrated, it felt like the sun rising at dawn. I felt alive as I watched her. I wanted to be there too. I stood there, almost involuntarily fixated, as she turned her head to end her devotion, and I simply couldn’t take my eyes off her.

And leave alone the bunch of lilies I had grasped in my hand, as she turned to smile at me, it was like an entire orchard had bloomed in the garden of my heart.

And don’t get me wrong… this had nothing to do with the superficiality of how she looked. Her face was free of any cosmetics, but there was a sterling illumination that shone through from within.

I felt like an idiot as I stood there with a tasbeeh counter to show my own worth, when on the biggest day of her life, she had pushed everything else aside, probably sabotaged her wedding make-up, and put everything else on hold just so that she wouldn’t fail on her rightful duty to her Lord.

On all these feelings… the Halal ones…. they had absolutely nothing on the first time I glimpsed her at Rubeena’s house, or the feeling when Danyaal said he loved her… or even the moment when I knew I shouldn’t have been staring when she came into my hazy view, panting from running from the rain…

All those times I didn’t even know I was looking at this awesome person whom I would share the rest of my life with. And honestly, would you blame me if I say that was what made the words stuck in my throat like a rubber ball? I could not even imagine what to say, so I just stood there and smiled like an idiot, because, well, that’s what people who are hopelessly in well… hopelessness… do.

And of course, I so badly wanted to tell her all this as we sat together and prayed, like how couples in the most extraordinary of fairytales do… But in all fairness, I was kind of bowled over. Some hearts hold the deepest of conversations, even in silence.

And the details don’t really matter. What we said after, didn’t matter. It really doesn’t matter, because love wasn’t only based on what you feel, or what you say. Words are just pretext. It’s the inner bond that brings two souls together.

When words fail, then you know you’re in the deep end.

We don’t reason what we feel; we just feel. In my one desire to know her, everything else was fulfilled. It wasn’t to do with sweaty palms or butterflies in the tummy. It wasn’t even about their imperfections being perfect, when love is true.

Because love was purest only when it is for the pleasure of the One Who created it. To remember that whatever you do.. whatever you love… is only because you want to win in His love. It means that you strive for the ultimate…. and you won’t settle for anything less. It means that you will no longer chase ‘love’, but you will reach the greatest heights of devotion because of Him… Because you seek Him through the beauty of that very love.

And no-one else knew it, but this bond that was made possible, had a profound wisdom beyond our comprehension. Although she would be my calm, my sparkle and even my reasoning when I was way above my head, this young woman… this extraordinary warrior… was someone that I would draw immense strength from, when the going got a little rough.

Well. Really tough.

My wife had a knack of facing the most fierce battles with the firmest of conviction. Her unfailing habit was to prefer everyone else before herself, despite the odds that were cast at her, time and time again. It was she who her family relied on for strength, for resolution, for courage… and when I had sought her hand for marriage, thinking she was way beyond my reach, I really had gotten so much more than I had bargained for.

And then of course… just when I thought that everything was going according to plan, the bomb that was waiting to be dropped, was at its onset…

A slight tap on the door caught us slightly unaware, and in the knowledge that it was probably one of her family members, I gently held her hand for her rise and open. It was a completely different feeling as she smiled at me gratefully, got to her feet swiftly and moved forward to open the door.

And that’s when I heard the voice from outside, slightly panicked, as I lifted my gaze to see.

“I’m so sorry to disturb, but you’ll have to come….”

Dear Readers,

Sorry for the delayed post.🌸

Just a thought as I was writing this- sometimes on these ‘big’ days of our lives we are so ridden with nerves and anxiety we sometimes forget Who controls it all. That very thing we stress about, even during our prayers at times, is in control of the One we are praying to.

May Allah grant us understanding. Shukran for all the feedback… love to hear from the readers.

Much Love,

A 🌸

Sunnah Revival: Visiting the sick 

The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)  said:

“Feed the hungry, visit the sick, and set free the captives.” [Bukhari]

The concept of looking out for others is found throughout the teachings of the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him).

Sadly, we are regularly aware of people within our circle of family, friends and acquaintances who are tested with an illness, big or small.

Visiting and spending time with them has two major benefits. You demonstrate love towards another, instantly tightening the bonds of kinship/friendship.

Also, to see someone who is unable to function as well as they normally can, is a strong reminder of the blessing of health.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah, because it is through our Akhlaaq that people can see the light of Islam and beauty of Deen.

How easy to practise!





Twitter @ajourneyjournal

IG: @thejourneyingmuslimah


And so it Happened

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


It can be scary to find out you’ve been wrong about something. About someone.

The thing is, when you’ve hit rock bottom and everything seems at a loss, you need to remember; your situation can change in just a moment. Sometimes, the changes are forced on us. Sometimes, they happen by accident and we make the most of them. Sometimes, it just takes one prayer… to change everything.

And yes, even as the years went by and my marriage went through the motions that usually happen after you have a child and settle into some kind of comfort zone, I still often thought of the past. I thought of the past because at the beginning, it had been an escape. It made me feel like maybe things could have been different. And of course, I often thought of it because I wished I could be in it.

And then, I came to know of a beautiful thing called Qadr. Destiny. That no matter what, that which wasn’t meant for you, will never be, even if it’s between your two lips. That every new day brings a new dawn. That each new beginning that life gives us, is an amazing opportunity to learn from every mistake and set it right. And no matter how hard you wish you could start all over again, the intensity of wishing that, will never change what was in your destiny.

“Big day, huh? You need anything?”

I jumped as I heard his voice.

Jameel had surprised me. I had left both of them still in bed because I knew Muhammed would probably start screaming blue murder if his bottle wasn’t hot and ready as soon as his eyes popped open.

I simply loved how men came in at the eleventh hour, acting like they are prepared to take on anything, when all the big stuff had already been sorted out.

“I’m just making his bottle,” I said, scrutinizing the bottle line as I checked if it was correct. Jameel had already lost interest as he started tying his laces.

The thing with men taking the whole detached role from kids and everything to do with it was really baffling. Jameel took the crown.

The thing was, my stress levels were soaring and all the wedding anxiety wasn’t exactly doing them any good, even though there wasn’t much to do. Despite it all, I was still trying to breastfeed but due to my random panic attacks, my milk supply had dropped and I knew Muhammed would be less than understanding about it. He was at that stage where he had started to bite me, and  youch… I was never prepared for those.

“You’ve been on edge,” Jameel said, and I could tell he was trying to be careful about what he was saying.

He was right though. I had been on edge. Worried. Anxious. Even hopeful that something would happen to stir things up. Since the news of Khawlah and her imminent Nikah was eating me alive.

I turned to look at my husband. Of course, as usual he looked on top of the world, even with his unstyled hair, tracksuit pants and a short sleeve vest. The annoying part was that had probably just woken up…. That’s what gave Jameel the confidence that he always had, and it irked me.

He rubbed his bare arm as he scrutinized me, and I averted my gaze.

“I’m fine,” I said, hoping not to sound too blunt.

I barely noticed him step toward me as I turned away, until I felt a cold touch to my cheek.

I flinched.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I loved my husband. I did. Despite everything, I still loved him. But love has been created such that anger, grief, or pain to a certain degree, can still be expressed. When rough patches and hurt have been part of the route along the way, it’s not that easy to move past it unconditionally. Certain things… moments… events… they bring back feelings from the past that you wished so hard that you could just forget…

Jameels nostrils flared slightly as it did when he was slightly anxious. I looked at him questioningly.

I love you, Zuleikha,” he said softly, gently tightening his grip on my shoulders, forcing me to meet his gaze.

I swallowed, not expecting the emotion that was there. Jameel wasn’t a reserved guy, but it was unlike him to be so… expressive.

“And I…”

He paused as he contemplated over his next words momentarily.  I breathed in deeply, cupping Muhammad’s bottle in my palms as I felt it’s comforting warmth.

“I wanted to tell you,” he said, almost as if he was forcing the words out. “You can’t control everything. It’s going to be okay…”

I blinked as I looked at my husband, stunned for a moment by his compassion.

“That guy,” he said, so softly I could barely hear. “He’s a good guy.”

I blinked and breathed out. I was surprised at the intuition of Jameel. 

And then of course, I couldn’t help but think to myself…

But what about you?! Are you a good guy?

We stared at each other almost in uncertainty, as if each of us knew what the other was thinking. I knew he wanted to prove to me that he had changed… but Muhammed’s bawling was all it took for me to completely discard my concern as Jameel dismissed his own thoughts and pecked me on the cheek to signal his leaving.

I felt bad after that. Guilty. I sat in bed that morning as I fed my son, still thinking about everything that had been on my mind… wondering if there was any hope for me to have full faith in my husband again. Yes, of recent, he did try… but there was a bigger picture here. The past. The lies. The disregard for my feelings and the constantly worrying if everything he was saying was actually the truth. Staying in a marriage like that was like walking a tightrope.

I breathed deeply as Muhammed looked at me lovingly, obsessed with my sons long lashes. He had inherited those from his father, and I kissed his cheek tenderly as I shifted my gaze to Jameel’s side of the bed,  his iPhone immediately caught my eye. Of course, my mind was already running ahead of me as I reached over and unlocked it with no hinderance.

No face recognition. No password. I was actually surprised that Jameel’s phone was so easy to access nowadays.

My heart thudded in my chest as I browsed through his e-mails, scanning for the one that would speak an argument or cause a fight. I closed the e-mail application, now searching for something incriminating. I supposed it was habit.

In the days of our ignorance, there was always something shady that I had located on his phone, and although Jameel often played it down, drug talk and casual chats with women had become a issue that I had become accustomed to. After Muhammed was born, this was the first time I had really done this, and as I opened the touched the WhatsApp icon, I really wasn’t prepared for what I would see.

It was just one new message that got my attention… and I opened it easily with a simple tap, as I scanned the contents.

Thank you so much, boss, it said. We just reached. You don’t know what this means to us. May Allah reward you and your family eternally. You will be in every Du’aa. You made this happen. 

I blinked, slightly confused. I read the message again, as I accessed the senders details, wondering if it was a mistake.

You made this happen?

I was so baffled. Jameel..?

I didn’t understand, but in confusion, as I read and re-read the message, though it was so hard to believe… I was certain that it was true.

Jameel had paid for this guy and his family… to go for Hajj.

And it wasn’t just him. A few messages down, was a guy I vaguely remembered Jameel’s school friend. He too, had sent a message with pictures of his landing at the airport in Madinah, and expressing his gratitude to Jameel for making this possible.

The most unexpected realization was… it wasn’t a mistake.

How many more were there? How many secret deeds did my husband have that I had no idea about? Perhaps he had helped build someone’s home? Fed the poor? Gave money to help the sick?

The questions in my mind were overwhelming.

I didn’t understand. When had Jameel done this? I mean, Jameel had always had plenty of money, but how had he managed to change his focus? Yes, I had seen small changes in him, but to do something so selfless and not even tell me about it… I was speechless.

I closed the phone in a daze and left it in its place, my heart beating rapidly in my chest. I was overcome with emotion.

It wasn’t fear. It wasn’t even anxiety. It was an unexplainable excitement that I couldn’t fathom… A hope that I had held onto for so long, that it’s imminent fulfillment simply took my breath away. The unexpected… can change everything.

And yes, Jameel had a huge heart. His ability to fulfill someone’s request just by them asking, when it came to financial needs, was always met. I juts knew that Allah wanted me to see this, and make me understand that there are some people that Allah loves for the most unassuming qualities.

It was like what Zaynah he said once. Just as Allah uses every quality of His to admit people to Jannah, every person who will get admitted to Jannah… will be afforded that opportunity due to a different quality that they possess.

That kind of big-heartedness… for the pleasure of Allah alone, can be just the reason for your whole life to turn around. Sometimes it just takes one moment… one change…. one action… and Allah takes you, holds your hand and makes you His forever. You don’t have to be the most pious of people, but when Allah chooses you to be a means of fulfilment for someone else, we cannot understand the beauty in that.

I steadied my breath, even though I was overwhelmed, I knew that there was no time to waste. I still had to pack my bag… get my stuff together, make sure I have Khawlah’s gift and and get ready to help her to be ready for her big day. The reservations that had been plaguing me since a week back were now at bay, and since my discovery about Jameel that renewed my hope in him… I knew that this day was going to be so much more bearable….

I said nothing to my husband, even as he dropped me off with much enthusiasm that I had not seen in him… like ever. His excitement about the Nikah was way exceeding mine. I knew it had to do with him finally getting a chance to work with a famous web developer who was soon going to be my brother-in-law, and though it didn’t meant much to me, I could tell Jameel was ecstatic.

As I reached the house and greeted my father and Dada affectionately, the quiet atmosphere in the house made me nostalgic, and I knew exactly what it was that had cause it. Foi Nani was a very palpable gap in our hearts, and we felt her absence daily. The fact that Khawlah would be entering another stage of her life which we knew Foi Nani would have been thrilled to see, had understandably got everyone a little emotional.

I watched my brother, trying to read his emotions as he took Muhammed from me. Overnight, Ahmed had become this brawny young man who seemed so much wiser than even myself. Traveling, exploring and learning so much about our Deen in the process too, had given him a wisdom and insight that intrigued me.

And then, there was Yunus. I was glad that he had finally opened up again and gave us the privilege of hearing his intelligent rambles. How intellectual he actually was, surprised me. Abba had always boasted about his good grades, and I knew that he hoped that he was destined for big things. Allah had a greater plan for him.

As for my dearest Khawlah, who always seemed to see the light within the darkness, and be the spark to our fire… as you could imagine… she was nowhere in sight. As the men left for the Nikah, I ushered the few ladies who were there to the lounge near the room where Khawlah was getting ready. My cousins from the UK had been so ecstatic about the wedding that they planned a trip to surprise Khawlah, and I couldn’t wait to see her face when she would see them arrive.

I smiled to myself. Actually, I couldn’t wait to see my sister, and just thinking about it made my heart soar.

Zuleikha, darling!

It was just her twinkly voice that made my day, and I was already smiling. Aunty Radiyyah was here and she truly brought with her the serenity that we all needed right then. I hugged her as she cooed over my son, and of course, then followed me down the passage as we rapped softly on Khawlah’s room door.

And of course, it felt like time stood still for those few seconds as Nusaybah held the door ajar, and then slowly revealed a sight of splendour as we saw the young woman perched at the edge of the bed…

I simply could not believe my eyes.

I mean, I know people are generally biased and have this thing where they think that their family is the most amazing and all the rest…. but seriously...

I really could not believe that my sixteen-year-old sister, who was looking like the most gorgeous version of a fairytale princess, was getting married.

No more did I see that feisty little girl who had been the catalyst in our home. No more was Khawlah the stubborn, and difficult to to control little girl that Mama had often struggled to understand. Instead… my little sister had grown up to be the calm in our very storm. Like my mother, she embodied faith, courage and a ferocity that convinced everyone around her that regardless of the number of years she had lived, Khawlah’s conviction far exceeded it.

I blinked, snapping out of my trance as an impatient Muhammed whacked my nose.

“Doesn’t she look just beautiful?”

Nusaybah’s eyes were wide as she looked at us, with a half-smile on her face. The time had gone so fast..  these two weeks of getting a dress, planning the small function that was happening that evening and mentally preparing ourselves for everything this would bring was exhausting. I felt like time had robbed us of building a proper bond, but I didn’t despair as I looked at her face, because she was positively glowing.

It was a moment of pure exhilaration as I shifted my gaze to my sister again, and I forced myself to hold back. My eyes were filling with tears and the lump in my throat seemed to expand. And then, of course, Khawlah gave me a small smile, and almost as if she herself couldn’t believe that this day had actually come.

The Nikah was over in a few minutes. A message from Ahmed, brought a shaky smile to both our faces, as I showed Khawlah the screen.

Deal sealed. They accept. ”

Qabiltun Nikaha …

Those words sent shivers down my spine, as I read it.

He accepts. He accepted.

And then, without a warning, despite her outward strength, then came a split second when momentary fragility overcame her.

And of course it would. What a huge step she had taken. What a great act of worship she had fulfilled.

Even as the rest of the family made their way in and everyone in the room moved in to greet her, it was me that my baby sister’s hands reached out for, almost in desperation and I clutched her fiercely, trying to steady the unexpected turbulence that had overcome.

For now… even if it was just for now

BarakAllah…” was all I managed to say as I held her tightly, my voice breaking with emotion.

“May Allah bless everything for you two..
And shower His blessings upon the two of you…
And may he bring you together…
In everything that is good…”

It was Aunty Radiyyah who almost whispered it, just loud enough for us to hear, and as she said it, for that moment, everything seemed to fit together again, as we held on to each other, almost for dear life.

My heart ached for every desire to be fulfilled. That her spouse would be the coolness of her eyes. For this Sunnah to be her salvation… To dwell in nothing short of tranquillity. To pray together through thick and thin… and stay together always.

Oh, how I yearned for all the happiness in the world to be hers. I wished her marriage to be a one of innumerable blessings. Like the chosen companions of whom Allah had revealed His pleasure, I wished her home to be a place where charity was a norm… an abundant norm. Like what Muhammed (SAW) and Khadijah (RA) had, when the tears welled up in his blessed eyes as he glimpsed her necklace, even after all those years… I wished her and her husband to be completed so beautifully, that all that spread from their base would be goodness, love and sincere compassion.

And that was the beauty of Nikah. All this time, I had forgotten, yet I hoped so hard that she instead, would have the opportunity to discover every wonder that could be in a spouse, because that’s what she deserved.

We all need that one person, at least, to believe in us implicitly. To inspire our soul. To know our mettle. To be our fall-back. We need to know in moments of grief, insecurity and vulnerability… that there is someone who will stand by, no matter what. I sincerely believe that the greater of a person you are, even better will be the person whom Allah chooses to complement you. And for Khawlah.. what I knew is that within her was nothing less than sincerity and pure goodness… and so Allâh had chosen the perfect person who would be unreservedly bring out the best in her.

Some people will live their whole lives, just to reach this place. The place where everything seems to fit just so perfectly together. Where every piece within them that was once broken, is now seemingly fixed.

But, let me tell you one thing. Everyone will make you believe that this is the place where it all ends. This is the happily ever after. The riding into the sunset. The love story conclusion.

But that’s where they’re wrong. This is, in essence, only where it all begins. This is just the start: the initiation of a life, the polishing of your character, the lessons of patience, perseverance, and sacrifice. The building of selflessness. The building of love, for and only through Allah that truly can exist.

And in our oblivion, little did we realise that this particular destination was not only about Aadam and Khawlah. It was a journey that would mould each of us in a different way, revived our dwindling spirits and brought us back on the most amazing path that led to our Lord…

And so it happened… amidst a fairytale that was playing right before our eyes… a whole new chapter was just about to begin.

Shukran to all the readers for being so patient! I know it was a much awaited post…

Duaas. Love to hear the rambles… ❤️

Much Love,

A 🌸

Sunnah Revival: Visiting the sick 

The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)  said:

“Feed the hungry, visit the sick, and set free the captives.” [Bukhari]

The concept of looking out for others is found throughout the teachings of the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him).

Sadly, we are regularly aware of people within our circle of family, friends and acquaintances who are tested with an illness, big or small.

Visiting and spending time with them has two major benefits. You demonstrate love towards another, instantly tightening the bonds of kinship/friendship.

Also, to see someone who is unable to function as well as they normally can, is a strong reminder of the blessing of health.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah, because it is through our Akhlaaq that people can see the light of Islam and beauty of Deen.

How easy to practise!






Twitter @ajourneyjournal

IG: @thejourneyingmuslimah

When Destiny Awaits

Note: Dear readers, this one’s a really  long post and I think I’m due for a short break, so please bear with me as I may need a little extra time off before the next post. 🌸

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


I’d like to think that everyone has that someone special in their life that they can call their ‘person’.

Some call it destiny. Some say it’s fate. The fact is that, when you know, you know. Whether it’s love at first sight or an instant connection with a friend, sometimes we just fit together like puzzle pieces that have been waiting for their perfect match.

And then, just like that, she knows you, to an almost creepy degree, better than anyone else. A person who sees your soul, inside and out. Who can call with a guaranteed no-hang-ups rule, whether you are ecstatic to a giddy degree or at your lowest point and just cannot find your way back up. A person who, despite everything, still stuck by,  because they know that no matter what… this ‘bff ‘kind of relationship is not defined by circumstantial things like being in school together, or going through a phase of life where you’re similar… but this person sticks by forever because that thing where you just get each other for infinity… is totally next level.

And of course, if anyone had to ask me how I chose my ‘person’, I knew that there was no other explanation besides the inspiration that I led my life by.

When I first saw Nusaybah, of course, I knew that she was special. She had that determined look in her eyes that just intrigued me so… and a distinct aura of hijaabi beauty, that I just could not fathom. Some beauty goes beyond flawless skin and perfect features. Some beauty just radiates from within.

Nusaybah, in all her amazement, resembled exactly what the Sahaabiya she was name after did. Faith, embodiment and unprecedented courage. She was extraordinary to no limits, and of course, I knew that when I looked at her, she perfectly ticked every box that my beloved Prophet (SAW) had stipulated for the most treasured friend.

Your best friend is the one who: seeing him reminds you of Allah, speaking to him increases your knowledge, and his actions remind you of the hereafter.” (Al-Muhasibi)

And of course, since I loved this girlfriend of mine so much, the thought that anything I could do would push her away, literally haunted me every night. And so of course, when Adam had so very genuinely asked me if I would let my guard down and open my heart to a new chapter of our lives… I knew that nothing could go further if I didn’t speak to my most beloved friend and of course, seek her approval.

Despite her being my ‘person’, things had been awkward since the whole revelation of the scandal, and even though we were still besties, I felt like the rift between us was going to become a big barrier if we didn’t nip it in the bud and talk it all out. Also, with Ahmed pushing me to make a quick decision regarding the Nikah date… I knew that time was of the essence.

I trudged along as I walked, barely noticing the streaks of sunlight smiling at me through the amazing jacaranda trees that towered above. My mood was a bit sombre as I walked down the path that led to Nusaybahs door, and I knocked loudly, feeling my nerves dwindling as I waited for my friend.

I could hear a few sounds from inside, and a few seconds later, Nusaybah yanked the door open with a scarf loosely draped around her head and slippers on. I grinned, despite the emotion that riddled my thoughts. Seeing her just made it all okay again, and just because we had that kind of unexplained bond, I knew the feeling was mutual.

“Hey you,” she smiled, greeting me affectionately with salaam as she pulled me into a warm embrace. I smiled back at her as I breathed on her familiar scent, so glad that there was no awkwardness that stood between.

“I was thinking of you this morning.”

I waited for her to elaborate as we walked to her room, with her little brother following behind us and talking non-stop about the holiday they had been on a week before.

“So,” I  said, smiling at her whilst she closed the door and we finally had some privacy. Her eyes were dancing, and her smile was excited.

“Tell me you don’t know?”

I frowned. What was she on about?

“Khawlah, honestly!” She said, slapping her palm to her forehead. “Sometimes I feel like you live in another world. Don’t you ever use technology? Facebook? Instagram?”

Of course I knew about social media but I didn’t have an accounts to explore them with. Besides, except for browsing for the odd book on the net of ordering my next favourite novel, I felt technology was a waste of time. I would much prefer reading a beneficial book.

“Nus, you know I don’t care much about that stuff,” I said blandly.

”Well this time it’s important!” She almost shrieked.

Okay. I got her. But what on earth was giving her such a hype?!

She took a deep breath.

“First of all Khawlah,” she said, her voice a little softer. “I’m so sorry that I didn’t tell you about Hannah’s stunt…”

I expected the apology, but shrugged it off as she insisted on explaining. And then of course, she went on to tell me that after feeling so guilty and like she let me down, she had made it her duty to track Hannah down and find her – because she had done an amazingly good disappearing job during the last two weeks. Basically, the end result was a post that very morning from Hannah’s Facebook profile that went viral… and of course, everyone now knew that Hannah was a huge phony who was using my name as some sort of evil deception.

Honestly, the relief that I felt at that moment was just overwhelming. It was like a huge burden had been lifted from my shoulders. Like rainbows and sunshine and all the rest… I wanted to hug my friend, but I was so crazily intrigued… and of course, super curious.

How on earth did she do it? Hannah was such a hard nut to crack and I really could not imagine anyone getting through to her. What on earth did she tell her to prompt this revelation?

“But… how?” I stammered, my eyes wide as Nusaybah continued with her explanation.

“Oh, a few threats here and there,” she said dismissively, with an evil smirk. “When you deal with people like Hannah, you have to play hard. Remember that she got her friends into trouble last year? I knew what Hannah was capable of and I figured it out… it was exam time and there was some change up with exam papers. Of course I wasn’t going to let that girl win. I knew that if I exposed her, she would probably be expelled, and I can’t let a traitor rest. All that time in the library actually paid off… I could do my own investigation and we got some payback for all the havoc she caused. You have to see it to believe it, Khawlah… People are going crazy on her!”

I wanted to giggle but I was too edgy to even breathe. Nusaybah really had a fierce streak to her that I had no idea about. Modestly feisty, yet still so admirable.

Of course, how could I have not guessed? Like a warrior who was decisive and incredibly intelligent in her strategies… she had a ruthless sense of self-preservation that was not only limited to herself, but extended to her loved ones as well.

And of course, as I watched her, I couldn’t help but picture her as I had when I first met her.

In the heat of a raging battle, came a moment of pure trepidation. Their hearts were in their mouths and their lives were at stake… but they attempted with every ounce of themselves, to up their defence as the enemy approached, from every side.

But, alas… it was all to no avail. The Muslims were ambushed from behind, and indeed… they feared that this would bring their fate.

And then, like a sweeping eagle, her presence came, almost from nowhere… and there she was.

She knew she couldn’t resist, because that love that the most honoured of people have for the Best of the Best (SAW), was beyond the world itself. Nusaybah (RA) plunged into the battlefield, because she knew there was no way she could let the enemy overpower. She couldn’t let her lot down. Seeing her beloved Messenger (SAW) immensely threatened, she knew she would not bear it if he was slain.

And how she edged on, amidst open gashes and dripping wounds…. The Muslim soldiers were awestruck. They were simply astounded by the skill of this woman with a sword, who persevered valiantly throughout the attack of her enemy. They family fought on with intese determination, inspired greater heights of heroism, and renewed all vigour. The Prophet (SAW) said that in whichever direction he looked, he saw Nusaybah (RA) fighting and defending him.

She sustained at least 12 major wounds on the battlefield, one which took a year to heal. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said to her: 

‘From where can anyone get courage like you, O Umm ‘Umarah?’

Of course, nothing can compare to the determination of a woman.  At a time when the Muslims had respect, love, and honour, those women who had such passion, that nothing could hinder them. It was a fierce determination that made the best of companions. The nature of a woman with a raging love in her heart brought on another dimension completely.

Here I was, all this time, thinking that some superhero would be the one to get me out of this… but surprise, surprise… I, for one, should have known better. Girl power has no comparison.

Nusaybah grinned at me as I looked at her in awe and shook my head. She opened her laptop to show me the comments section… and I was shocked, 1056 comments. Really, people had so much of time…

For the first time in my life, I realized the extent of social media in the modern world. How a simple post can just fire up a whole controversy. There was really no getting away from it, yet I was so glad that I had remained oblivious all this time.

Yikes,” was all I could say, as I studied various comments from girls at school, obviously outraged by the scandal. There were even guys that I barely knew who had commented, and I felt quite concerned that this entire escapade had caused such a riot. It was shocking.

I exhaled, obviously relieved about the result, and wondering if Adam knew about this. Well, of course he would… I actually wondered if he had also had something to do wit it…

And then, something caught me eye.

Even when you try and change it, the beauty of truth always shines through. Beauty is about knowing and accepting who you are. That girl who you hurt and broke , she’s beautiful not only for the way she looks. She’s beautiful, right down to her very soul.”


I breathed out now, a little overwhelmed by emotion. Someone said that about me? Someone thought that about me? A girl who I probably barely even knew in school had seen something so deep, that it stood out for her so much, that she was inspired to write this…

Its never about your physical being. What was not important is how we treat people… how we act… how we react, especially when tested in way that could possibly break your spirit. Beautiful character was the most treasured beauty of all.

I could see Nusayabah looking at me as we both turned away now, knowing that it was enough of the social media. All of this was making me more emotional than I thought… and I really did not expect it…

”Looks like you have some secret admirers, huh?” She said quietly.

I smiled, amidst the torrent that I felt within my chest. My heart had undergone a massive turbulence during the past few weeks, but as I looked at Nusaybah, her courage, positivity and jolly nature was a healing for the most messed up of hearts.

“Talking about secret admirers,” I said, settling my hammering heart and taking the bait. “I had something to ask you.”

Nusaybah looked at me, with slight curiosity, as she plopped on to the bed and turned onto her tummy to eye me out.


How did I phrase this? I felt like I was challenging her dreams…

”I wanted to ask about Rubeena’s brother,” I said slightly hesitantly, feeling so awkwardly uncomfortable. “If he had to… errr…”

I was fumbling over my words because I really didn’t want to ask. But what had to be done, had to be done… I wouldn’t be able bear the uncertainty if I didn’t know.

Nusaybah cocked her head to one side and narrowed her eyes. I could almost see the lightbulb come on in her head. Nusaybah was no idiot, and I wanted to kick myself for acting so weird about the whole thing.

She was my best friend. My person. I couldn’t hide anything from her, even if I wanted to. How could I even think of it?

”Khawlah,” she said, pursing her lips.

And then, as if she could barely help it, she smiled, and like unhindered magic, her mouth involuntarily widened and it was like her bursts of laughter were just overflowing as they spilled out of her, before morphing into a fully blown fit of uncontrolled giggles.

And of course, seeing her like that myself, I couldn’t help but alleviate my own nerves with torrents of giggles too, because I knew that the awkwardness was over. And gosh, was I so glad.

“Oh my goodness, Khawlah!” Nusaybah panted, struggling for breath as she tried to overcome the urge to giggle more.

Childhood crushes and teenage dreams… it was all part of growing up, making mistakes and learning through it all. And yes, I knew it had been silly at first, but my hope had always been that at some point, Nusaybah would grow up and either overcome it or find some kind of happy ending… but I just didn’t expect my own feelings to come in between.

The truth was that she was really never serious in any of her little remarks she had made about Adam, and she definitely did not expect anything to come out of it.

“Khawlah,” she said, after her little explanation and all the giggles had died down. “You think I didn’t expect this?”

She was smiling as she said it, but I wasn’t.

”Gosh, Khawlah… when I took you there, I already knew that Rubeena would love you,” she said, so naturally. “The kids too. I mean, how could they not?”

I swallowed, not knowing that all this time… Nusaybah had known all along. Maybe even planned it. I couldn’t help but feel emotional. She was so good-natured. Unbelievably selfless. Excessively rich in character.

“And of course, Adam, sooner or later, he would too…”

I bit my lip, not trusting myself to say anything. I could tell from the look she was wearing that she remembered that day we had first seen him, and all we noticed was biceps and gelled hair. Who would have thought that he would have ever changed? 

I knew what I wanted, but was it really the right thing? Yes, I had humbly asked my Lord to guide me in very step of my new venture.. but how would I ever be really sure?

“Hey,” she said now with a tiny dimpled smile, looking at me with her chin cupped in her hands. “I know you worried about his past, but listen… you have to take the plunge. Everyone’s got sins. Nikah is not meant to be a confession session. Take a chance, ‘coz what Allah has decreed, who are we to challenge? Doesn’t He say when you turn to him and repent, then it’s like whoooossshhh…”

She stretched out her arm instinctively to illustrate something like the wiping of a chalkboard.

“Just like that,” she said with a force, raising her eyebrows. “Everything gets erased, hun. Everything. So who are we to judge?”

I smiled, because of course, Nusaybah was  obviously Divinely sent. An assistance through every thorny patch that I had always hoped would be full of roses. An alleviation to the most turbulent storms, her refreshing showers of inspiration were a mercy from above.

“Hey,” she said, grinning from ear-to-ear now. “Quit the worrying. There’s no getting away from your bestie. I’m warning you- I’m going to be there for everything. Like a creepy stalker, I won’t leave your side. The proposal, the Nikah, even the romantic  dates when you’ll are getting to know each other after being married – I mean, that’s like the cutest thing ever…”

She fake-gagged and rolled her eyes as she said it and winked at me.

I wanted to laugh and cry all at the same time. There was still so much to think about… so much to still decide. I was still so young, and there was so much going on… I felt in over my head. I knew I wouldn’t stay with him, and he did tell me he’s willing to wait, but would he really wait for me to till I finish school?

Call me presumptions… but I never thought I’d be the type to get married early. What I wanted was something different. And yes, getting married at a young age is difficult and challenging and sets us up for unique obstacles, but I wanted to be there to watch my husband grow too. I didn’t want to see him, if I knew it wouldn’t be right. Pure. I didn’t want to risk hurting our future through anything detrimental, because I wanted it to be special, and I knew it could be so great.

And as Nusaybah looked at me, I knew exactly what she had on her mind. I was tough, yes. A warrior, always. I was supposed to be the strong one here… but Nusaybah…

She was beyond even that. She had shown the strength of a woman who held so much of conviction in her heart, because she knew what to tell me to get me to do the best thing for my Deen.

Was I just going to be like everyone else and do what everyone else does…? To move through the motions of a relationship and remain undecided… with no direction, like so many girls we knew.

And yes, I didn’t know much about feelings. I didn’t even know about love.  But what I did know was that when it came to matters of the heart, we seldom have much control. We don’t reason what we feel; we just feel. And what I felt… I could barely explain.

Taqdeer. Destiny. Fate.

It was what it was. It shall be what it shall be. That is how it will end.

The ties that bind us are impossible to explain, but some ties… some ties are just meant to be. Some people just speak to our souls. They spark a connection that not even time, distance or logic can explain.

All I knew was this; I wanted to be right there. To grow together. Not at at arms length. Not even a short distance away. Marriage… Nikah… that sacred union… was something so intense and intimate that it knew no barriers. Through loss and through love… through sickness, senility, and through everything that we conquered along life’s way… I didn’t want to miss out. The first grey hair, the moment we would hit our thirties… the wrinkles, changing bodies and the ups and downs that come with being through the tough times together too…

The Maker of my unruly heart knew me better than anyone else, and of course, He knew why He placed certain people in our paths. Whether it be for a day, a month, or just a season… You would be surprised as to what is waiting to walk in to your life, once you learn to stop running. But once you stop, you begin to feel more. You begin to understand, what is meant to be and what is meant to run away…. 

In retrospect, when I looked back, how Allah had planned my journey with Adam so perfectly, I couldn’t even divulge. Light upon light, that shone through after the overwhelming darkness, was more perfect than I could imagine. His was the hope that had freed us, after we had been burdened for so long. With so much that had held us back in the past, Adam had an unbelievable way that snuck into every heart, and stayed there, even long after he was gone.

All I could say about back then was than Taqdeer (destiny) had a beautiful way of revealing itself, and it’s unfolding, though it broke my heart many times, finally opened it’s very doors. Sometimes you have to hurt, to heal. Sometimes the cure for the pain, is in the pain itself.

It was time for me to give my final answer, and I couldn’t think of any better  time to do it than right now….

And of course, just as the knocking sounded on Nusaybah’s room door… I already knew that destiny was waiting just outside…

This is my story. And this is just the beginning.


Getting married or making Nikah young… Any thoughts? 

Always love to hear the rambles of the readers!

Much Love,

A 🌸

Don’t forget our mission Sunnah revival! 

The beautiful character of Nabi (SAW).

The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said:

“He who believes in Allah and the Hereafter, if he witnesses any matter he should talk in good terms about it or keep quiet.” [Muslim]

We often find ourselves in situations where we sit and talk about things that do not concern us. We waste precious minutes, even hours, just by talking about matters that will not increase us in knowledge, character or anything for that matter.

When speaking ill of a person or situation, the conversation becomes elongated, sadly due to the desire to gossip. The beauty of this particular Sunnah is that it will help you save time and reduce the amount of energy used to contemplate over irrelevant matters being discussed.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah, because it is through our Akhlaaq that people can see the light of Islam and beauty of Deen.

How easy to practise!






Twitter @ajourneyjournal

IG: @thejourneyingmuslimah



Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


The biggest mistake as Muslim parents living in a western world, is that we believe our role as parents is like any other parent. What other kids do, ours must follow suit. Furthermore, how other kids are raised, becomes the norm for us as well.

The painful truth is that western parenting methods have a really big glitch. The fact that kids can be vocal to an unruly and disrespectful extent, can often create disagreeable adults. Disciplining your kids in a western society with a simple smack, is a definite no-no. In short, any attempt to show whose boss and to mould your kids into straight and refined individuals who think before they talk, and ponder before they act, is taboo.

The thought came to me as I drove to my mothers house one weekday morning during the holidays, in an attempt to occupy the kids and also get the long awaited meeting with my mother over with. Zia had been recently re-exposed to one of the catchiest tunes of the century and was now ‘baby-sharking’ at peak volume, despite me going crazy on him from the drivers seat.

Now, I had been warned by Adam to filter their YouTube videos. I had been trying to get them to watch good stuff, instead of the usual crap, because killing their addiction completely was proving difficult. But yesterday, upon Shabeer’s request to meet with him at a restaurant so he could spend some time with the kids, a unhappy little boy at the next table sat and watched the “doo-doo-do-do” video about seventy-five times in one sitting, despite protests from other annoyed customers, just so that his parents could eat in peace.

I was appalled. And of course, if I didn’t know better now, I couldn’t help but think to myself- that could have been me! Actually, if nothing had changed in my life, it would have been me!

And of course, even as an exceptionally good-looking version of Shabeer stole glances at me, trying to figure out exactly I was thinking as he pretended to listen to the kids, I couldn’t have been more grateful for seeing the light. Now, while my kids talked, colored and even uncontrollably giggled, I was so much more at peace because I knew that they were in a much better place than ever. Technology-free was bliss. Without the constant need to take selfies wherever I went, to show the world that I was having a good time, when I really wasn’t, I honestly felt so much more… free.

The thing is, if anyone had to ever ask me why my children were suddenly so well-behaved, I knew I’d be able to say it without a hitch. It was only when I had found the peace within the shade of Allah, that I noticed the difference in them. When I started covering myself, stopped sinning and started praying, it was like a huge cloud had been shifted out of our vicinity, and all that descended on us was serenity. Peace, that I had never, in my entire life before, ever witnessed. The fact is that our lies, deceit, gossip and general disobedience to our Lord’s commands not only affect us, but cause a huge glitch in our network.

To be able to keep a firm hold over your child, despite the situation, was a gift indeed. As was the practice of the old, prince and princesses, dukes and duchesses, were taught differently. Likewise, Muslim children are special, and it has nothing to do with having a sense of false superiority. Our responsibility as the Ummah who was given the last and final messenger is a huge one indeed. Where other nations were sent multiple prophets, and multiple books, for us was reserved the one guide and one manual, which undoubtedly has such conviction and amazing insight to last us till the end of time. And we can never understand the gift on being brought up with Imaan (faith)… and the responsibility as a parent in fulfilling this trust.

Parenting is no walk in the park, but when we truly understand that we are to be shepherds over our flock, we will understand the true beauty of the responsibility that Allah has entrusted us with.

Abdullah ibn Umar reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Every one of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. The leader of people is a guardian and is responsible for his subjects. A man is the guardian of his family and he is responsible for them. A woman is the guardian of her husband’s home and his children and she is responsible for them. The servant of a man is a guardian of the property of his master and he is responsible for it. No doubt, every one of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 6719, Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 1829

And as much as I sometimes looked back on my life and wondered if I really had done the right thing by bringing these kids into a marriage that I knew was not the strongest. I had to understand that what had happened was all in its place, and what mattered now was how I got through this. Getting married young was my idea. I wanted what I wanted. I wanted who I wanted. And I was the type that would do anything to get it…

Well, look where it got you now, Ruby, I told myself cynically. All that go-getting didn’t serve me very well in the end.

I tried to put the thoughts at bay as I breathed out and scooped a few more spoons of pasta into the three bowls I had taken out to feed the kids. Where Danyaal had always been easy about what he would eat, the other three were difficult to please. Most of the time it was either pasta or chicken pops. I honestly wondered if they didn’t get sick of the same diet, but it definitely made things a bit easier. I wasn’t the most ambitious cook, but nutrient wise, I wasn’t sure how good it was.

”Yummy yum,” Dayyaan said as he reached for the bowl in haste. I couldn’t resist to smack his hand away, with an irate glare.

Ask first!” I snapped at him, annoyed at Dayyaan’s general habit of helping himself to anything he had an inclination to. Where Danyaal would always ask, Dayyaan often took matters into his own hands. His independence and general attitude was starting to get on my nerves.

His face immediately fell, and of course, I couldn’t help but feel guilty. Was I being too hard? Too stern? Too mean?

Where was the balance between disciplining my kids and doing permanent damage? I was still struggling to get it right.

“Go and take a seat, and I will bring it for you,” I said now, my voice a little less harsh.

I seated them and placed their bowls in front of them, getting ready for the big talk with my mother that I had planned. I hadn’t told my mum about Shabeer and I also knew that Adam was immensely relying on me to smooth talk my mother into letting him make his own choice for marriage.

”Where’s Uncle Aadam?”

Danyaal was looking at me questioningly as he scooped up the last few grains of my mother’s Breyani. If I wasn’t mistaken, Danyaal had seemed a bit quieter than usual these days. He also looked a bit worried.

“I think he’ll come later,” I said, not really certain if what I was saying was true.

“Adam, not Aaaadam,” Dayyaan said, munching on his pasta as he frowned.

Despite Aadam having his own place, he still stayed with my parents most of the time. Recently, though, I wasn’t too sure.

“Khawlah says the Arabic name is Aadam,” Danyaal said, matter of fact.

Dayyaan was easily convinced.

“Isn’t Uncle Aadam getting married?”

Dayyaans question was directed at no-one in particular, but I immediately felt panicked  when he said that. I wasn’t sure when or where Dayyaan had heard it, but the information that kids had picked up involuntarily was scary. I could only assume  that my mother must have said something with the kids around. We really had to be so careful about what little ears may hear.

“No he’s not!” Danyaal said, clearly irritated. “Nona says he doesn’t like that girl. He’s too fussy.”

I really wished that I had zips that I could use to shut my kids mouths. Zaydaan, who had just started talking, never missed on opportunity to out-talk the others. It seemed like the only two words he had caught there were the most incriminating.

”Nona fussy,” he said, clear as day, just as my mother waltzed into the kitchen. I took one look at her and I could already see that she wasn’t too happy with me. I mean, what was new? I honestly wished that I had an invisibility cloak that I could throw on, at that moment.

Now, if you haven’t met my mother, let me just do a quick intro. To put it lightly, my mother was, and always had been, the most upright and sophisticated woman in the extended family. Maybe even in the entire town. My mother seldom wore flats, always had her hair done professionally and her face was always perfectly made-up… to the tee. Personality wise, in short, she was a force to be reckoned with. As you can imagine, I struggled throughout my childhood to meet her expectations, yet still fell short. To my mother, status was important. Excessive wealth was a necessity. And , of course, presentation was everything. How you looked, essentially,  could make you… or break you.

“Why are you turning my grandchildren against me?”

My mother’s glare was directed at me as she spoke.

“Ma, I -“

She cut me off with a simple wave of her hand and called for her helper to take the kids outside. I was glad that they wouldn’t have to hear the rest of the argument. My mother and I always had a strained relationship but I never minced my words when it came to the truth, even if she didn’t like it.

“Mum, they’re kids,” I explained, obviously annoyed. “I can’t control what they say-“

”Oh Rubeena, don’t give me that,” she said dismissively. “As it is my own son doesn’t respect me and my opinions, now your kids are heading the same way. Do you want to turn the whole world against me before I die?”

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. Now she was blaming me for Adam and his lack of interest in her friend’s daughter.I had no idea how I got sucked into all of this… as if I didn’t have enough of my own troubles to worry about. I was sure if I told her about Shabeer leaving, she would probably blame me.

”Mum, you do know that Adam is not a baby anymore?” I started, knowing I needed to address the bigger obstacle here.

“Yes, but he’s never been this way till he met that girl!” She retorted, stating exactly what the problem in her eyes was. “And he would always listen! I do know better than you’ll and I know what’s best. If you had listened to me before you chose that husband of yours then you would have been in better place right now! What did I say? I told you to watch out. I told you that Waseem would come around. But no, you wouldn’t listen. As usual, you just went and did what you wanted!”

Of course she would bring up the tragic past and throw it back in my face. Waseem was the son of my father’s friend, and a childhood acquaintance. Yes, we would play weird pranks, watch DSTV together and have a ball while our parents socialized, but he was never a serious type of guy. He messed around a lot as a teenager and I knew he wouldn’t have committed to anyone at that stage. Of course, when I saw him, post-adolescence, a few years back, he changed his life in such a way that I actually couldn’t believe he was the same guy. I was sure that my mother would be shocked too.

“This is not about me and the choices I made,” I said through gritted teeth, knowing now that my mother definitely knew more than she was letting on. “Adam can make his own decisions and he doesn’t let anyone tell him what to do. Why would what I say even affect him? He’s a grown man who can think for himself.”

She scoffed.

“He’s my son and I know what’s best for him,” she said without a hitch. “He’s handsome. Wealthy. He’s got international investments… and of course, he’s reached a platform that no-on his age has ever reached, in his industry. He deserves the best and I would know that, better than anyone.”

Ugh,” I said, infuriated by her boastful attitude. A few months ago, her saying all this wouldn’t have worried me… but now, all I could think was; didn’t she know that there’s more to life than that?

She was living a painful deception.

I also knew that she was having a go at me because I never got so far with a career.

“He’s not perfect, you know! He has faults too!”

I wasn’t sure where I was going with this, but I know that she was getting to me. I had to recheck myself, review my intentions, and I took a deep breath as my mother raised her eyebrow at me. I had to get back to the point of the discussion.

“I’m just saying,” I said, a little softer now. “I know you love him. And he loves you. He does respect you, and he’s begging for you to just listen… He’s wondering why you can’t see things from his perspective…”

She shot an unhappy glance at me as I said that, obviously feeling that I was overstepping the boundary. That was the problem though. There had always been boundaries. Respect, I understood. Of course it had its place. Obedience, I understood. That went without saying. But as a child, I had to always watch my own feelings so carefully because I could never show if I was hurt, upset or even feeling broken inside. For my mother, emotion was a sign of weakness. No matter what happened in life, to be an unwavering pillar, despite the ups and downs that came with life, was the only way.

I wasn’t sure if I saw right but there was a flicker off something unfamiliar in my mother’s eyes before she finally spoke.

“Mum, he wants to get married,” I said finally. “He’s changed so much in the past few months, and I know you’ve notice it too. Don’t be so hard on him. That ease… that enlightenment… that complete peace that he’s found now, Mum, I know that it’s not normal. I know because I’ve found it too.”

She glanced up momentarily. If only she truly understood. That moment of pure freedom… that loneliness that comes with complete and utter submission… its more precious than life itself .

”I’ll talk to him,” she said, her expression now back to the usual stagnant and in-control one. My mother was a difficult person, but I knew that she would do anything for her son. Well, a least I hoped…

I left my mothers house feeling a little more hopeful that day, and not like a complete failure of a sister.

Knowing Khawlah was coming later that day got the boys all excited, and since she told me she wanted me to have a small break while she was there, I took advantage. I made a point of not telling Adam because I wanted to give it some time before he met her officially. I didn’t want to put fuel in the fire regarding my mother either. I just didn’t think that the excitement of my boys would get to my brothers ears, and of course, as I drove in after my 90-minute Thai massage , feeling all calm and relaxed, despite the pouring rain, I didn’t anticipate what met me as I parked my car and stepped out.

That’s of course, when I saw Adam coming down the stairs, and of course, my feelings of slight anxiety immediately dissipated because on his face was the biggest and most genuine smile ever. He looked like he was in a rush but he came forward and greeted me as per usual, looking me in the eye with a look of pure delight, as he ran his hands through his hair. He placed the prayer hat he had in his hands back on his head and it really suited him.

Khawlah’s effect was obviously going further than just changing his frame of mind. If he wanted to marry a girl like her, he clearly understood that he had to step up.

I looked back at him questioningly, obviously wanting to know how Khawlah had taken the unexpected proposal.

“Rubes, I asked…”

I held my breath as he looked at me, and then broke out into an even wider smile. Of course I was already excited, as I hugged my brother in congratulations.

”Well, I think she said yes,” he said, rather comically. I smiled. “She was almost in tears. That’s a good sign, yeah? Or am I counting my chickens a little too early…”

He looked doubtful for a moment and I grinned. I already knew what her answer would be.

“Her brother’s coming back. We have a few things to sort out before the Nikah. Mum… Her father… and yeah, of course, I needed to sort some other stuff out…”

I was barely even listening to him as I started planning the event in my mind. Subtle decor, of course. Nothing over the top. Maybe white roses with crystals… or even orchards, with a neutral runner…

“Rubes, are you even listening?!”

I jumped as I looked back at him, slightly perturbed at his annoyance.

We would have to make a guest list of course. I’m sure they both would want something small and intimate. It was so much better that way. I was already picturing Khawlah in a pretty dress, as my brother would see her for the first time, as husband and wife. I was thinking candles. Pretty pastel colored candles with rose petals. The ambience… the atmosphere… I simply loved weddings and the romantic, cosy feel that it brought.

”You got that look on your face,” he said, his eyes dancing as he shook his head at me. “Just letting you know that we’re doing this the most conservative and Islamic way.”

”What?!” I said, peeved that he disrupted my virtual decor. I would start penning it all done later.

He wanted simple? Of course it would be.

“I asked about Shabeer,” he continued, his smile now just a shadow. “I can’t seem to find him. His phone is off and he’s not at his apartment. I don’t want to do any hacking again but if push come to shove…”

The panic was rising in my gut as he spoke about Shabeer, because I knew that sooner or later, I would have to tell him. I wasn’t used to hiding things from Adam.

“I need to talk to him because he’s the only one who can sort Hannah,” he said seriously. “The sooner, the better. Khawlah’s obviously in a state over everything that’s happened, and you know I won’t let it rest…”

I cleared my throat as my brother reached for his phone, while I stood there, a little unsure of whether I should spill out the truth or not. My heart was hammering in my chest.

“You won’t get him there,” I murmured to Adam, knowing that sooner or later he would find out.

I was visibly nervous and I couldn’t hide it. Adams eyes narrowed as he watched me, and finally rubbed his temples in frustration as I looked back at him in silence, not having the guts to actually say it.

“Wedding drama, right?!” I said meekly, trying to soften the blow.

“Oh crap, Rubes,” he said, visibly disturbed about the havoc this would most definitely cause… I knew that I had a lot to explain.

”You took him back, didn’t you?”

I knew that this was definitely going to cause a glitch in Adam’s perfectly-synced system…

But a little wedding theatrics never killed anyone, right?!

Note: sorry about the extra long post. There’s so much stil to be revealed and I know everyone is waiting for the Nikah- but we are getting there!  

Much love,

A 🌸


The beautiful character of Nabi (SAW).

The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said:

“He who believes in Allah and the Hereafter, if he witnesses any matter he should talk in good terms about it or keep quiet.” [Muslim]

We often find ourselves in situations where we sit and talk about things that do not concern us. We waste precious minutes, even hours, just by talking about matters that will not increase us in knowledge, character or anything for that matter.

When speaking ill of a person or situation, the conversation becomes elongated, sadly due to the desire to gossip. The beauty of this particular Sunnah is that it will help you save time and reduce the amount of energy used to contemplate over irrelevant matters being discussed.

Let’s revive this Sunnah InshaAllah, because it is through our Akhlaaq that people can see the light of Islam and beauty of Deen.

How easy to practise!






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