Apologies for the confusion. Am re-publishing the post since the notifications haven’t worked. Happy reading 🤍
Sometimes its easier not to reply. To not read those messages. Not to read into someone’s words. Not to have to explain to anyone. Not to blame ourselves, our timing or our lives.
But maybe it’s not so easy when you know some things could have been avoided. That you could have made it right, before you did it all wrong. That you wouldn’t have regretted, if you had just not made that mistake.
And as it turns out, sometimes you have to do the wrong thing. To falter. Sometimes you have to make a big mistake to figure out how to make things right. Mistakes are painful, but they’re the only way to find out how to make yourself better. Sometimes you have to err to become a better version of you. To repent. To return. And to find your way back to the beginning, to Allah, and to where you need to be to start all over again.
And okay, I know that my mistakes may have been a little stupid. There had been so many over a short period of time, and sometimes when I looked back I wondered if I had been sucked into some kind of Bermuda Triangle that was draining me of all common sense. Maybe I was a little over confident of my ability to be the kind of die-hard that I usually was. In normal situations, I was as solid as a rock, but when emotions were involved, I wasn’t quite sure how to draw barriers.
It had been a hectic day that was going to be a start to a rocky few months. When Layyanah had introduced me to her mother, I completely got why she wanted me to be there.
There we were, waiting nervously and in a bit of a frenzy as we worried about whether she would eat or not, whether she would stay for long or not, what to tell Liyaket or not, and all up in arms about how to deal with the situation that had kind of come out of the blue.
Firstly, the woman came in a Rolls Royce. (Can you believe it?) Her long hair was flying in the wind, and she wore a white slinky white suit, with huge sunglasses and high heels. She honestly looked like she stepped out of a Kardashian episode and I’m not even kidding. To tell the truth, aesthetically, the woman looked absolutely perfect, and even though she was probably in her 40’s, every guy who she walked past turned to look because she was that much of a show stopper.
But as she walked towards me and I greeted her Bruegel, there was something in her eyes that I couldn’t quite figure out. Yes, she was a beautiful woman but inside, under all those layers of expnsive perfume and make-up, I had myself wondering if she was really and truly happy. Somehow, when I looked through her, she resembled a shell of a person walking around.
She spoke informally, almost as if she was putting on a show. Her voice was a little higher-pitched than necessary and now that I could see her up-close, her eyelashes looked so layered that I wondered if they would fall off.
”So how’s married life, love?”
She smirked as she watched Layyanah after air kissing her on both sides of her cheeks, and then eyeing me out with a wink.
“At least I can say that my daughter married a C.A,” she said, shrugging and looking at me. Her accent was emphatic and put-on. Actually, it was more of a put-off. “Problem is, I don’t even have any snaps to show for it. I hope you took some decent wedding pictures at least, Layyanah. I have to show the girls that you didn’t get married in an Abaya. I mean, the dress is not Dior but I suppose it will do.”
Layyanah shook her head as her mother coaxed her to smile, and Liyaket sat obediently toward the back of the room, looking anxious to make an exit. His introduction had been brief and awkward, and I completely got why.
”Fay, please don’t take any pictures for Instagram,” Layyanah requested.
Fay? She called her mother Fay?!
Her mother waved her hand indifferently.
”It’s just a little bridal glamour,” she said, not looking at me yet. Of course, I was just the non-existent friends. I was grateful she didn’t know any more. “Stop having a heart attack.”
Layyanah pursed her lips and narrowed her eyes.
“Anyway, this place is so quaint!” Fay cooed, flipping her long hair and sitting back again as she put her phone down. “Not exactly my style, you know, but I suppose you can’t have no money and still have the best. You do know that, don’t you, hunny?”
Layyanah was silent. Liyaket excused himslef now, knowing that there really was nothing else for him to do after he showed himself for all of two minutes. If I was him, I would have done the exact same. Why should he stick around for the name-bashing?
Fay seemed completely oblivious.
“You know, I was telling your father,” she said excitedly. “Our anniversary is coming up and I’m itching to plan a function, love. Back then, our wedding was so basic. Better than this though, and it was cute and stuff, but not tasteful, you know? These functions I see online… They’re exquisite! Of course, we will have to see whats trending in three months time and I’m following all the right decor pages for tips. Okay, so maybe I had a 1000 people and a five course meal but now it’s fine up to seven courses and everything is individually plated. Let’s not forget the hand-made personalised favours that they’re giving guests that are something else completely. A dream wedding, Layy, if only you just listened to us we could have given you everything you wanted…”
I kind of wanted to duck away but I couldn’t. It was just too sensitive.
“Everything I wanted?!” Layyanah cut in, raising her eyebrows. “Oh please Fay, it was everything you wanted. I was just going with the flow because there would have been a big performance if I didn’t agree!”
Woah. I didn’t realise that Layyanah could be so edgy, even to her own mother. I mean, it was still her mother, right? Surely there had to be some barriers there.
Her mother was unruffled. She looked like she was used to this.
”Layyanah darling,” she said. “You’re my daughter, I know exactly what you like.”
She said it so naturally and Layyanah was buying none of it.
“You have no idea!” Layyanah spat, her eyes flashing angrily. “All you want to do is waste money on stupid junk that no-one even cares about! And Daddy is even more stupid because he just dishes out to you as you want. Let’s just spend money on temporary dumb things even though people are starving in the world. You know why you guys are perfect together?! You both have no sense and no bloody conscience and I cant believe you still want to waste money on more bloody extravagance!”
I was stunned into shock because Layyanah didn’t use the word ‘bloody’. She used another more vicious word that I only heard in some Netflix series. I was only grateful that Liyaket was gone so he didn’t see this side of her. He might have been a bit scarred.
And I completely got her point, but as I watched them go back and forth I realized that this whole dynamic was all skewed, and it kind of scared me.
Instead of Layyanah being petrified of her mother and the consequences (like I was at any given moment when my mother was around), she treated her like one of her casual friends. She spoke to her like she would speak to any girl from the office, maybe even a little looser. She even addressed her haphazardly by a nickname, with no respect. And the thing was, I was no expert on parenting and it was a far off notion for me (duh!), but I could see exactly where the problem was.
Some parents confuse parenting with being friendly, but they forget the most important thing.
Anyone can be a friend, but parents have a unique and important role that involves them ‘parenting’ first. And yes, it was all Layyanah, my friend, but the fact was that Layyanah behaved this way because her parents never drew any boundaries. Speaking your mind was disrespectful when you spoke however you liked. Assertiveness is only okay when you don’t trample the rights of others. Especially your parents. The thing was, nowadays, bringing honour to those who brought you up was no longer a thing. Where once Muslim kids were admired for their manners, nowadays, they aren’t. Nowadays, they just gave crap and then recieved more in return.
Jibraeel (AS) said, “Inform me about the Hour.” He (the Prophet)(sallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said, “About that the one questioned knows no more than the questioner.” So, he said, “Well, inform me about its signs.” He said, “They are that the slave-girl will give birth to her mistress…”
Sahih Muslim (8)
And that was exactly what it looked like. Like a slave who was just being subjecting to whatever Layyanah was dishing out. She was giving it to her mother, with absolutely no reproach for what she said.
And as I sat there, reeling in shock, boy, was I glad when Layyanah finally said:
”We’ve already discussed this topic fifty million times over, so can we just drop it?!”
Layyanah was looking at her mother now, and I could see she that she had calmed down, which hopefully meant that the no more language and profanity were on the cards. Her mother shrugged and turned to me, and at that moment, I felt a teeny bit of sympathy for her. Just for a milli-second, and then it was gone.
The thing was, unfortunately, there was no respect from either side, or even any kind of mothering. She didn’t offer her any useful advice or tell her how to take care of her husband, like I know my mother would do. She didn’t even give her any Duáas, like any normnal parent would.
Honestly, now all Layyanah looked like was defeated and teary and like she needed was a shoulder to lean on and someone talk to. Here her mother was, all focused on how to spend more money and be more extravagant.
I wasn’t even sure what to say, but Fay just gave an exasperated sigh and then turned to me, all smiles.
Oh gosh, was it my turn next?
“Why do I feel like I know you?” She asked, and my heart skipped a beat in my chest as she said it.
There we go. Probably from the photos that they sent the hitman.
I smiled sweetly, sticking out my hand, business style. Layyanah had introduced us briefly but not formally.
“I’m Mohsina,” I said pleasantly. I was used to putting on a front. “I’m a CA at Hammonds. Layy and I worked together.”
Well, that kind of impressed her, but she looked at me quizzically, and then suddenly, her eyes lit up,
“Oh my word,” she mused, her eyes getting wider. “Your’re the Mostly Mohsina, aren’t you?! Hey, I know you! Like I really know you! How’s your mother? And your sister? Oh yes, I remember that time when you guys went on that family holiday to the beach house on the west coast. It looked stunning! I keep telling Layys father that we need to take a holiday locally. Like, Ras Al Khaimah always blows us away, but maybe after Dubai we’ll try something local.”
Okay, so let me explain- so in all fairness, it wasn’t exactly a family holiday. It was a holiday of family, and I wasn’t exactly lying but social media was a tough world. It was just the wording that mattered. My father had gone with my mother and sister to visit some of his family at a beautiful villa, and the pictures were magically stunning. Private beaches and heated pools. The most unusual coral and white sandy shores. Of course, it was the perfect content to use for my weekend post. The thing is, you had to keep coming up with content to keep people interested. Don’t hate the player. That was the game.
“I feel like I’m your best friend,” she went on, clasping my hand and gazing at me in admiration. “And you’re like an influencer, right? Ive been following you for two years now and I lurrvv your feed!”
And of course, I was feeling all chuffed and excited that all my hard work wasn’t going to waste. I mean, that’s what it was all about right? Making an impression. Making sure that people remember you for all the fancy and unique things you post. It’s not about reality. No ways. It was a world that was as far away from reality than anything.
I just couldn’t understand why I was feeling so far from that world right then. it was like I had been disconnected from it, even if it was just for this little while.
And I was still trying to process my feelings while Layyanah tried to offer her mother something, but she was already talking about leaving because she didn’t want Layyanahs father to find out where she was.
I mean, even though she was superficial and extremely caught up, she was still a mother, and that’s why she had come.
And as my brain was still processing this very strange relationship, out of the blue, Jameela suddenly knocked on the door, excusing herslef and then knelt down next to me. Of course, Layyanahs mother seemed thrilled to see her, because she was my sister. I had a feeling like she felt that she really did know me, even when I had never met her before in real life. And okay, it was a teeny bit freaky. Jameela was looking confused as her mother gushed over her, and then she turned to me as her focus changed, kneeling down slightly, close to my ear.
“We need to leave,” Jameela said, her voice sounding a little more hysteric than usual. “Like right now.”
I turned to look at my sister, excusing myself from Layyanah as I noticed the panicked look on jameelas face. We did need to leave. The wind was starting to pick up significantly.
“What’s going on?” I hissed at her, pulling her away from the them as I excused myself and moved into a corner.
”We just have to leave,” she muttered, keeping her voice low. “I’ll explain later.”
“Where’s Muhammed Husayn?”
“Someone said the shed at the front of the plot,” she said, not seeming too worried. “I tried looking for him, but as usual, I can’t find him and now I’m going to the car. I don’t care anymore! Let him stay here!”
Oh hell, now my brother was gone awol. He had probably got that guy to show him something old and historical and went to explore. Weird child. Typical teenager. Inconsiderate. As usual, I had to pick up the pieces because Jameela was pretty useless at everything besides planning coffee shops and wasting money.
I told Layyanah I’d see her soon, and even though her mother was leaving too, she held on to me a little longer than necessary, sounding both nervous and excited at that same time, as I left them to say their goodbyes.
And I was all excited and optimistic for my friend and this new chapter of her life, but I was also aware that it could also turn out horribly if she didn’t watch her back.
And if it all turned out okay, I would be eternally grateful. But for now, I had bigger things to sort out, like getting home. I was all out for soaking up the sunset but my parents were already freaking out about us being home after dark and I knew it was time to leave.
And after heading off for the shed to look for my brother, my entire purpose in life was disrupted. All I did was follow the instructions and go toward the front of the plot (If I knew where that was). The problem was, it was so huge and vast, that instead of it being a short drive, it ended up being a half hour route on foot that brought me right back to where I started. I was positively fuming, wondering why the hell Muhammed Husayn was so irresponsible, when all I had to do was ask someone for help that I so desperately needed.
There were many things that may have been a cause, and set me off track. I was soaking in my glory, all chuffed by the recognition of my Instagram page that was apparently amazing (according to Fay), and probably set me off on a wrong foot from the beginning. Jameela was going bezerk on me because she was intent on leaving and I was getting all sorts of panicked because it was nearly Asr time and I knew that if I didn’t hurry up, timing in getting home would be a disaster. To top it off, there had been a cloud burst and I was all soaked and shivering to the extent that I was actually regretting even coming here on the first place.
And yes, I must have looked an utter state. And it was no wonder that I emerged all wet and terrrifying as I trudged up the bank to where my car was parked. I could see Hamzah in the distance but I wasn’t going to risk it the whole conversation out of work thing, especially when I looked like this. I wouldn’t have done it in any circumstance, and besides, it was against every rule of decency I had ever known.
And although I desperately tried to block my face, luck was just on my side that day. And no, I didn’t want to pass all the blame over, but I would have just walked straight ahead and tried calling Husayn for the 15th time that hour, but I was also tired and hungry and I just wanted to go home.
See, I knew about barriers. Walls. I always had them up. I was extra careful, especially after Nani had been on my back about having too much of freedom. I took these things seriously. Yes, I wasn’t the best and I spoke where necessary, but I wasn’t that type. I wasn’t the type to just fall into traps. I was the type to avoid them all, but this one, I didn’t even see coming.
“Hey,” he said briefly, obviously noticing my strained face that I was desperately trying to hide. Yes, it was only Hamzah but I looked like a disheveled rag doll.
I expected some remark about Snapchat or Facebook as he watched me busy on my phone, trying to call my brother desperately, only to get no answer, but he didn’t have that usual attitude that he did at work. He looked calmer. Easy. Maybe the air here had smothered his annoying tendencies.
Or maybe he was probably just feeling sorry for me because I looked like a shipwreck.
”It’s okay,” I said, trying to appear composed when I wanted to cry. He actually looked like a completely foreign person now, in a dark kurta and slightly styled hair. At least someone here was looking normal. “I’m okay.”
He nodded, and then narrowed his eyes.
”You don’t look okay,” he said, and I looked at him. His eyebrows were raised questioningly. “You sure everything is okay? Is Lesley still around?”
“Lesley’s fine,” I snapped, a little faster than I intended. Of course I didn’t look fine. I had just been attacked violently by torrents of rain. Why did he have to rub it in?
Also, why did he have to bring Lesley into this? She was already on her prepaid Uber back home, and it was so unfair. All I wanted to do was find my brother and go home too.
And of course, now Hamzah was looking at me like I was some kind of kuku case. But honestly, there really was more to life than Lesley. And yes, I didn’t resent her, but I think I had enough of her for the entire week. The girl had really tested me that day.
He held his hands up, and I could immediately see that weird look in his eyes again.
“I was just checking,” he said defensively, but his voice didn’t sound like him. Well, not like the usual him. “I’m glad you sorted it out. See you.”
And I should’ve left it at that. I mean, there was no real harm done. But now I was feeling bad.
Why, I didn’t know.
And that was mistake number two.
Because no matter what, feelings and regret and whatever else was brewing, I knew that it wasn’t worth the risk of falling into sin. But sometimes, we’re just weak. Sometimes our minds are screaming for us to be a little rational, but our hearts are pulling us the complete opposite way.
No, it wasn’t okay. And yes, it had happened before. Being alone with him, even here in the open, even if I needed help. This wasn’t the same as it was before.
It was a desperate measure. Maybe a mistake that I didn’t even think much of, but would cost us so much more than I could ever imagine at the time.
”I’m sorry,” I called out, blowing my nose, because it was all snotty and runny due to the crazy weather and helluva emotions. His back was still to me as he paused, but didn’t turn around.
“Hamzah, wait. I need your help.”
Just a quick one to say that I always look forward to your comments. Any thoughts on Layyanah and what she may be getting into?
Always appreciate the input, it definitely gets the creative juices flowing. 🤍
Mission Sunnah Revival: the beautiful Sunnah of eating and licking fingers.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
١٥ ربيع الأول ١٤٤٣
15th Rabee’ul Awwal 1443 – South Africa
22nd October 2021
رسول الله صلى الله تعالى عليه وسلم said:
If the morsel of any one of you fall, then he should pick it up, thereafter remove any dirt etc on it, and eat it. And he should not leave it (morsel), for satan.
And he should not wipe his hand, with a cloth, until he lick his fingers, for verily he doesn’t know, in which portion of his food, is the blessing (Barakah)
If a morsel fall down, then we must not regard it as, reprehensible.
There’s great reward in picking up a morsel and eating it, regarding it a Sunnah.
If it’s not possible to eat it, then place it in such a place, where some animal can eat it.j
Would Fay put her in problem . I mean due to her position in society..
Oh poor mohsina.. I feel for her.. she the right person in the place at the wrong time..
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Hopefully not! Shukran sister…
Mohsina definitely got a knack of getting herself in compromising situations … 🙈 let’s see what’s next …
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Well it was nice meeting fay👀
جزاك الله خيرا for the amazing post.
All I can say is I’m likiñ hamza more and more and really happy to see Mohsinas penny’s drop into place for her.
Hopefully lay snd liy have a good marital life and his family openly and happily accept Lay
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Aameen, she’s quite a character isn’t she 👅
Completely agree with your sentiments but Mohsina is a bit of an erratic character at times. Let’s hope she’s as strong and hardy as she comes across.
Some things are just left to be seen…
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I got so happy so see another post so soon😍 just itching for the next!! Plz plz mohsina don’t do anything that’ll cause unnecessary drama.
I love how you highlighted the part about drawing the line with parenting because at the moment I’m finding it quite challenging parenting my 4. My mum was quite strict. She homeschooled all if us also..lol just the thought of back answering was so terrifying😁we would have caught it with the Champal. But here with my sil there seem to be a diff method. It’s all about talking and counseling and explaining and allowing the child to make choices themselves and to learn from there mistakes. You have a problem with your teacher/ustaadh, you have a choice of going to another one. So confusing. I’m trying to combine both methods. But sometimes I feel like I’m failing. If you strict they get more stubborn but if you try to be lenient they take advantage. Any tips??
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Aw man, Shukran sister, good to know it’s appreciated. So I just went on a writing spree and decided to post again. Fe
Oh my, your mum was really patient, wasn’t she? Alhumdulillah ! I feel like these days the kids are just wired differently. Times are different too and that’s even more scary. Some of them just have a mind of their own.
So I also have 4 kids and I feel like some days I’m merely hanging by a thread.
I still firmly believe in the champal but that’s just me, hehe 👅
I think talking is fine sometimes, but when they are just being plain belligerent and spoilt then only a smack does the trick for me 🙈
But I think the magic is in the balance, as you said. . I do scream a lot. But I also heard that nurturing them with love and good examples from both parents where it’s important, is what’s a deal breaker. These days kids want your time, your attention. Your focus, it’s something that’s lacking, especially with social media and the world we live in. I seriously feel that if we get that balance right, leave our careers and shopping aside when they are around and focus on this amaanah then there’s no way we can go wrong.
Allah has made the mother the perfect one to comfort and to assist the children, but when that presence is lacking then there are many things that can go wrong.
Just my thoughts – not sure if many would agree but I really feel that the mother, more than anyone else, that can make the biggest difference . ❤️
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Jazakallah khair for the advice💗!!! Will def take it.It’s good to know there are others out there that still parent our old fashioned tried and tested way🥰 i do use my trusted slipper but after interacting with all the mums here at my in laws I was starting to doubt myself but hey old is gold. They use methods from books written by experts on parenting and psychology. While they have their pros I see there are cons as well which as you said a smack will do the trick.
Jazakallah again for the tips. Waiting patiently for the next one In Sha Allah 💚💚
Ps how you manage to still have a creative brain with 4 is beyond me🤪 Allah Ta’ala always continue to allow you to inspire us all. Ameen
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JazaakAllah khair for the post.
We are all faced with some trial in life, but I think one of the hardest is having a negative relationship with ones parents. The line of respect towards your parents should always be there regardless of them being in the wrong. Just raising the voice to your parents could be an act of displeasure to Allah who has stressed on the importance of obedience to parents. Even though Lays’s mom is probably to blame for this unusual parent/ child relationship and we could even think that she deserves it, I hope that Lay realises through her new beginning that she would have to repair that relationship. It will obviously be very hard. It so sad that even though her intentions to marry Liy were correct, that the beginning of her new life has been clouded with her mom’s presence and icy words. The least her mom could have done, and the most important thing was make good duas for her daughter. What more powerful than a mother’s dua. Hopefully her mom will realize her mistakes too.
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I love this… so insightful, Masha Allah and so true.
No matter what, respect should be there.
Let’s hope that maybe Mohsina can guide her to some kind of redemption in that regard, since she kind of got that part right at least,
Du’aas from our parents are really so important. May Allah enable me to practise this first. As parents get older sometimes we can’t understand them, and it takes more patience as well… so really, a lesson for us all. 🤍
JazakAllah Khair sister ❣️
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