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


14 thoughts on “When Words Fail

  1. Loved this post. ما شا الله 💕I cannot explain the euphoria and happiness I feel when I see a post from you. Its always so full of lessons and realistic. This is by far one of my favourite blogs.

    💙اللهم زد فزد💙

    I can’t wait for the next post!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This post had me in tears😭… Loved it!!! The beauty of a simple nikah…if only everyone can understand how much Barakat it brings. This lifestyle of ruby’s mother is so on point but was so foreign to me until I got married. I remember the first wedding I attended… I thought I was dreaming… Elderly ladies with hairdos and extensions and professionally done up faces..

    Liked by 3 people

  3. MashAllah so beautiful ❤️. So much Barakah in things done the correct way and with with simplicity. Always looking forward to the next post. JazaakAllah khair 💐

    Liked by 3 people

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