Mohsina Part 56
When Hamzah had mentioned the word adventure…. Well, let me just tell you, I wasn’t quite prepared for the kind that he had in mind.
It was the barely even what a sane person would call ‘morning’, of the day we were scheduled to leave the farm, when he had woken me up at an insanely early part, and actually expected me to get out of bed.
And of course, I had pulled Zaid off of me, squinted at him like he was crazy, and rolled over again. But that was the thing with Hamzah. He was so good at convincing me that it was going to be worth it, that I could do nothing more than pull on some lazy track pants and a long sleeve modest top.
“No need for the Abaya,” he said with a wink, after I’d prayed my Fajr Salaah, and I narrowed my eyes at him, wondering where we were going. “It’s just going to be us. You and me. Young, wild and free.”
Euw. Cheesy was not the word. I was so perturbed that I didn’t even take the hint that was being offered.
I made a puke face and pulled on a sports hijab, because I could already see him tying his laces and I kind of figured this was going to be some sort of wilderness expedition. Not that I was the sporty type, but I mean; sportswear was still trendy and I was just happy that I had brought my brand new modest activewear set with me.
And I wasn’t even sure how it happened but somehow, an hour later, there I was, the usually city-inclined @mostlymohsina, at an unmentionable time of the morning, trudging through the thicket behind Hamzah through some random bush, with really no true sense of direction or information of what was to come.
The thing was, this wasn’t on the itinerary. I wasn’t really prepared for actual trekking through hiking trails and unstable grounds. I wasn’t even mentally prepped for creepy crawlies and weird spikey-like caterpillar thingums that we saw on bushes. I had already shocked Hamzah senseless with a few high pitched screams, to the point where he probably was tirelessly immune to the drama.
Besides that, I was literally just trying to maneuver myself through carnivore-territory without trying to freak out to much about getting murdered or killed, while I avoided cliff like edges that I could fall off and tried to just focus once again on Hamzah’s retreating back, that was now about a metre ahead of me.
“Where are we even going?” I nagged impatiently, poking him in the spot behind his shoulder blades with a stick that I had picked up along the way. It was the third time I had asked and it wasn’t as if I was the easiest person to deal with otherwise, pokes and all. “And how much longer?”
“Stop being such a control freak,” he muttered now, shaking his head at my impatience. I honestly could not stand suspense. It was the worst part of this whole trip.
I mean, it wasn’t all bad. The smell of nature had actually become strangely pleasant to me, and the sound of nothing but my rapid breathing was unusually calming. The intensity of the suns rays had been brazenly shining down on me for about half an hour now, and as the thickness of the greenery lifted, I shielded my eyes as I watched how focused Hamzah was.
And okay… maybe I was being a bit of a grouch, but gosh, he seemed to love this kind of stuff.
And as we found ourselves on a slightly more elevated point, when the sound of flowing water awakened my senses with the parting of the thicket, the sight below us revealed a most breathtaking lush valley that literally made me stop in my tracks. It was beauty upon beauty and beyond that all… all we could witness was the unveiling of the extraordinary mountainous skies that Allah Ta’ala had once again brought alive through every beginning of day. And as I gazed downwards, the untainted vision of blue waters in the sunken valley was a soothing salve to my senses…
My word, it was enchanting.
The gorgeous stream below us was slowly revealing itself through the thicket, and as I peeped through to get a better view, Hamzah had paused for a minute, almost as if he was recalling something, when I heard his phone ring in his pocket.
Signal! Oh my goodness. It was a miracle!
And there was nothing quite like it to defer my attention. Finally, I could check on Zaid. And messages. And life, as I knew it. Civilians were accessible! Also, though Saaliha was very confident that Zaid would be perfectly fine, my own heart had been so uncertain about leaving him for the entire three hours Hamzah had predicted we would take…
My aspirational husband had already taken out his iPhone, glanced at it with a certain flicker of emotion on his eye, and then put it back in his pocket. It was almost as if he don’t want to bother with the matter that was at hand then, and instinctively, my hand delved into my own pocket, but before I could even slide it upwards to unlock, Hamzah’s hand had already grabbed my phone, hastily tossing it onto the thickened floor of a nearby bush .
”Oh no, you didn’t,” I muttered, narrowing my eyes and looking at Hamzah as a sly smile crept onto his face.
He was smirking at me, as the filtered sun shone on his brown hair, with not an ounce of remorse on his striking face.
“No technology,” he said blandly, looking at me, his eyes stagnant, as if to challenge me.
Damn. I was itching to to take some pictures too. This spot was simply spectacular. It had been an hour of intense hiking to get to this point. I had to have something to show for it.
“But I need to take some snaps!” I whined, looking absolutely distraught as he threw his own phone into the another cushioned part of the bush.
He was pulling off his backpack and his cap, and a little Elfbar gadget he used to smoke when lighting a cigarette became too tedious. He had pulled out some snacks that we had packed, tossing a packet to where I was, before he sat down, facing the other way and puffed away.
“To hell with snaps,” he said smoothly, sitting closer to the edge as I took a step back while smoke clouded the air. “You took enough. And I’m warning you… Reach for it, and there will be consequences.”
And of course, I was barely the type to care about consequences. Especially from Hamzah. I mean, honestly, what could he really do?
I needed those pictures. It was like something was summoning me. All that effort. How could I not have something to show for it?
And as I stepped backward again, turning around exceptionally slowly while creeping silently toward the corner where my phone had been stashed, as Hamzah puffed away incessantly, I barely even heard a single scrunch of leaves behind me. In an instant, hands had already grasped me by the waist as I let out a startled shriek, as Hamzah literally air-lifted me off the ground to drag me back to where we had just been.
”Hey, man!” I yelled at him, struggling vehemently while trying to ease his unyielding grip on me.
“I told you there would be consequences, woman,” he warned aptly as I squealed again, but I could hear the humour in his voice as I wiggled around, now feeling just a little intimidated by his threats.
My wiggling was all in vain, due to his steely grip. He was barely even budging.
And okay. Maybe he was serious. Maybe I should just apologise.
”I’m sorry,” I said, putting on a pleading voice and hoping with every ounce within me that he wasn’t going to do what I thought he was.
No. Of course he wouldn’t throw me into the lurking waters below. He would never.
We were only standing at the edge of the bank of one of the most intimidatingly lakes I had ever seen. As I yanked myself backwards to try and escape him, his grip on my hand had tightened even more, while he stepped forward, toward the edge, and gave me a cheeky grin.
”You’re insane!” I almost shouted, struggling even more as I recognized that defiant look in his eye that signaled that he was about to do something crazy.
I did not know that I married a complete psychopath.
And okay, I wouldn’t have minded if he fulfilled his own deranged ideas, but why on Earth was he dragging me into it?!
I still couldn’t believe that he was actually thinking of that, but from the way he was focusing on it, I knew that he was absolutely serious. I wasn’t even sure if the water was deep enough for the height we were at, or if he had done this before…
”Hamzah, no!” I cried, honestly terrified, looking down at the torrents of water and pulling back with all the might I could muster, but he was too strong for me. “This is not funny anymore! Stop messing around!”
“Messing around?!” He said with a smirk. “Come on, City Girl from the Farm. Learn to live.”
”No no no!” I screeched, knowing what was going to happen but trying to stall him. “Not now!”
”If not now, then when?!”
It was all he said, and with that and a massive tug of strength that felt like my knees being buckled from behind me, a few milliseconds of gut-wrenching free fall ensued just before foamy, icy waters surrounded and drenched me to the bone.
For a minute, the air was completely knocked out of me as I pushed my head above the current, barely able to formulate a response for what he had just done.
Oh my goodness. He had actually done it. We had actually fell into the bloody water. What was wrong with him?!
I literally wanted to kill him. Right here in these waters, and leave him here to get devoured by the crocodiles.
And as I gasped for air, spluttering and spitting incoherent venom at him in an attempt to reprimand him, his expression was completely unbothered as he continued wading through the waters expertly against the current to the middle of the lake.
Somehow, he had known exactly where we had to jump, to get the perfect landing… and the thought that this was all planned made me even more infuriated.
I was already out of breath and focusing on keeping myself anchored, and as he surfaced again, his face glimmering irritatingly with water droplets, I lunged forward to attack him. Hamzah, obviously exceptionally more capable in the water than I ever imagined, dodged me effortlessly.
“I c-can’t believe you!” I screamed, my face right in front of his now, still in shock as I flailed my one free hand around in the water. “Let go of me! I want to g-get out!”
I was livid. Raging with anger and completely unimpressed. I could see a mocking humour in his eyes, and it just infuriated me more.
“Relax,” he said calmly, but still not letting go. “Stop acting like such a girl. Why do you always have to be in control?”
“C-Control?!” I said incredulously, still slightly shivery although I was trying to warm myself up. “This is n-not about control! It’s about c-crazy men who throw women off cliffs!”
He laughed, finding the entire thing extremely amusing. I still wanted to hurt him.
I was still struggling to get my other hand free, but his grip was way too tight to even try. I was angry and frustrated and now irrevocably soaked. I honestly wanted to cry.
”I can’t believe that you did that!” I shrieked, hating every second. I hated swimming. I hated water. I hated feeling cold.
I still could not believe that Hamzah was such an obnoxious piece of crap.
“Can you just stop screaming?” He said, his eyes darkening now as he pulled me towards the centre of the lake. “People will think I’m murdering you.”
”You probably are, you psychopath,” I shot back, still angry and but feeling myself calming down, without even realising.
“Why would I even want to kill you,” he said abruptly, as if it was self-explanatory. “I don’t even have a motive. It’s not like you have any money I can even-“
He was cut off by the proximity of my hand to his face as he said it, but he was so good in the water that he had now grasped both my hands by the wrists to annoy me further.
He thought he was funny. This man had a cheek.
“You’re evil!” I screeched, my face thunderous now as he gave me a smirk. “How do you know I can even swim?”
“That’s why I’m here, Instagram diva,” he said obviously, not even turning to look at me as he floated along now, me in tow.
“Just trust me, and relax, aight?” He replied, squeezing my shoulder in an attempt to comfort me.
”You must be kidding me,” I said with a fake laugh, shaking my head at the idea of even trusting him after this.
And although I was fighting it, against my will, the cool waters were doing their thing with me. I attempted to ease myself through them with Hamzah’s guidance, and I couldn’t help but feel soothed by the white noise as the water current crashed against me as we moved along, and for a moment, I began to enjoy the feeling of water surrounding me.
There was no way I would admit it. I continued to struggle but it was to no avail. I still wanted a way out, but instead, we were just moving deeper and deeper in.
And just as I was about to ask Hamzah where on Earth he was going, all of a sudden, we stopped, and as I turned, the cascading sound of a waterfall filled my ears, as I turned to look. Torrents of water were just ahead of us, falling from a height of about fifty meters, and sight of it – like a hue of paradise- immediately made me freeze in awe. I didn’t even struggle anymore, as we edged closer, my gaze fixed on the spectacular view ahead, as Hamzah also looked almost longingly at the glorious drop of water that towered ahead of us.
It was something like I had never set my sights on before. For a minute… just a crazy minute… I wondered how it would feel to be underneath there. For a crazy minute, I actually wished that Hamzah had pulled me right under, to feel the weight of that pounding water from the top of my head.
Goodness. Hamzah’s wild streak was rubbing off on me.
And then, just as quick as the thought entered, I berated myself for thinking of such insane things because there was no doubt that he would probably just do that…
I glanced at Hamza, knowing that was exactly on his mind when I saw the raw emotion in his eyes… but it was only when he spoke, that I knew exactly why.
”I was only ten when I came here for the first time,” his voice said in my ear, as I pulled myself far enough to create a distance between us, and close enough to feel safe.
Ten years old? Seems like the guy was always crazy.
The sound of the waterfall was now even louder than before as we approached it.
“It was with Liyaket,” he continued, and I looked at him as he said it, and my heart softened. “After Hifdh class one day, we stood there, where we were, and jumped in for the first time. Imraan warned us not to. He told my parents after and my mother almost killed us both. No regrets, though. It’s the best feeling in the world… and since then, well… every year it was our thing… and we would make this our trademark.”
“Once crazy, always crazy,” I said, shaking my head as I glanced at him.
He smiled faintly, but continued.
“Want to know something?” He said, still now, as he watched the pounding of water ahead of us. “The last time we came was… well… we came just before Zaid was born. It was like two weeks before he passed away… that he told me he wanted to come back here…”
I was quiet now, as I heard Hamzah, not even daring to look at him. I was still a tad bit angry at him, but also… well… I was kind of touched that he had brought me here.
And why wouldn’t I be?
The beauty before me was absolutely breathtaking. There were no words I could use to describe a wonder so magnificent. I had never been to a place like this before. I always shied away from nature, engaging myself in worlds that were so far from real… when it had so much to offer me. I could not believe that I had lived my whole life without seeing this before.
There were no phones, no Instagram posts and no means for diversions, but for the first time in years, I felt inspired and awakened by the setting before me, with no need to filter or replay… and I could not attribute its greatness to anything but Allah Ta’alas magnificence.
“He told me that he had a dream,” he said quietly, as he inched a little closer. “And I didn’t even think anything of it. He had seen in it that he was swimming in blue waters and there were unusual white birds flying above him. I laughed it off, you know. Told him that the only birds we’ll get flying above him here were Mynahs and they would probably give him some blessings on his head…”
I swallowed, surprised at how emotional I was getting while he said it. What an awesome dream…
“You know what I imagine him doing right now?” He said quietly, coming a little closer and for the first time in the waters, I felt completely at ease. Even though I was holding on for dear life due to the strong current, at that moment, nothing felt more safe than being right there.
I turned to look at him, because the sound of the waterfall was getting even louder now. We were approaching it from the side and he paused for a moment, droplets of water glistening on his beard, before he spoke again.
“Every time I read that ayah, it’s only he who comes to mind:
…As for those who believe and do good, We certainly never deny the reward of those who are best in deeds.
أُو۟لَـٰٓئِكَ لَهُمْ جَنَّـٰتُ عَدْنٍۢ تَجْرِى مِن تَحْتِهِمُ ٱلْأَنْهَـٰرُ يُحَلَّوْنَ فِيهَا مِنْ أَسَاوِرَ مِن ذَهَبٍۢ وَيَلْبَسُونَ ثِيَابًا خُضْرًۭا مِّن سُندُسٍۢ وَإِسْتَبْرَقٍۢ مُّتَّكِـِٔينَ فِيهَا عَلَى ٱلْأَرَآئِكِ ۚ نِعْمَ ٱلثَّوَابُ وَحَسُنَتْ مُرْتَفَقًۭا
It is they who will have the Gardens of Eternity, with rivers flowing under their feet .They will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold and will wear green garments of fine silk and brocade, reclining therein on adorned couches. Excellent is the reward, and good is the resting place.
It was a beautiful ayah, SubhaanAllah… that so astoundingly described the most unfiltered parts of Jannah…
“And I can almost still picture him right there,” Hamzah murmured as he moved forward, pointing toward the drop of water that was plummeting down, his chest now against my back and I could see the smile on his face while he probably held the vision in his mind. “And I only hope that he will get the most amazing kinds of waterfalls… In rivers of eternal bliss… with the most unusual birds of Jannah really flying above him… Having the time of his eternal life.
Imagine what types of rivers and falls are there, Mos… and he’s just free, in a place where there is no pain and no grief. He had so much that tied him up, so many difficulties… and yet he never complained. On the other hand, I had so much of opportunity and so much of ease… and I had gone so off track. How does it always happen that way? And after he changed his life, you know, he always said that he didn’t know how he would make up for it… but yet he did so much to fix himself. His Salaah was paramount in his life. His Dhor was flawless. He took everything to extreme levels. Lived a pure, honest life. No nonsense. No interest. No loans. He was such an example and I don’t even know how I was blessed with his friendship…”
Hamzah sighed and I didn’t even know what to say to that. I had just silent, listening in total awe…
”The thing is,” he said, glancing at me momentarily. “I think Liyaket would have liked that I brought you here. To our spot.
Their spot. I could literally see Hamzah’s mind recalling the vivid memories.
“I think he would have liked that.”
By then, my anger had already dissipated. And that was a sweet thing to say. I was already fully drenched, so why shouldn’t I just let myself enjoy the moment?
“It was the only time I saw Liyaket with no other care in the world. Free. Completely at ease,” he said softly. “I just want you to share that too, you know?”
“I know,” I said quietly, feeling exactly like Hamzah had described. Free. Not a care in this earthly existence.
“But man, Mos,” he said, almost as if it was a second thought, his honey-brown eyes twinkling even more in the sunlight as he gazed at me. “You’re a fighter.”
“No,” I said, with a wistful smile. “I’m a whole army.”
He grinned and even though I absolutely hated him just a few minutes ago, he was such a con-artist at swindling my heart, and as he came forward, his nose against my forehead as he pecked my nose gently, I knew that I couldn’t bail out now.
I mean; a few months ago, well… I would have never imagined this. In my heart… I was always a city girl. I would have never, in my wildest dreams, imagined Hamzah and I ever being out in the wildest of wilderness… in the depths of silent beauty that spoke right to my soul… having a heartfelt conversation about rivers and waterfalls of ethereal beauty, gardens of eternal bliss, unlike any others in our wildest dreams… And it was such a profound moment, in the most extraordinary setting that had awoken me, inspired me and made me see things in a completely new light…
And oh yes, the kind of world that was Hamzah’s was something like I’d never known before.
And that is when I truly realised the meaning of:
Death is a gift for a believer (Bayhaqi).
Because for the one who truly believes, it is through the gateway of death that he finds the door to eternal contentment and happiness…
And because of Liyaket, being here was something that was really important to him, and I had understood that. All these months… so much had pained him and grieved him and just being here for now had already brought him so much of joy… the thoughts of Jannah and the Aakhirah and everything that was still to come had evidently already lifted our spirits…
And though it didn’t lessen the heartache in any way, and the pain of loss was all fresh and devastating once again, all I could think of was how all this had come to show me a completely different sort of life… how it got us to focus on a different path and how our entire perspective had changed through the tragedy had we both felt so deeply.
It made me ponder. I mean, we all wanted Jannah. The amazement and the splendor … the milky rivers and the most sublime kind of gifts…we all wanted that kind of abode where the purest of Malaaikah would greet us … where there is nothing but ultimate perfection to encompass for eternity…
But the thing is, were we really earning it? What was I really going to secure my final abode?
I had been so caught up in the world and it’s ornaments… so consumed by everything it had to offer… that very often, we even forget our ultimate destination.
And that’s when it came to me, and I realised that even the most trying situations come with their own goodness. That though there was much pain and strife, through Hamzah coming into my life, a whole new world had suddenly opened for me. Perhaps the sole purpose of this entire thing was not for Zaid at all. Perhaps everything that had happened till then has no relation to what it’s true purpose was. Perhaps Allah Ta’ala, through his mercy, had wanted me to come to a realisation of Him, that would change my entire world.
All my life, all I ever worried about was me. My career. My job. My life. My problems. And then this happened, and everything changed.
And I’m not saying that this thing with Hamzah was always mind blowing and mesmerising… but what I did know was that somehow, the office-loving Chartered Accountant was slowly but surely morphing into an unyielding, adventure-seeking cow-girl, and I wasn’t even resisting it. Such beauty and splendour could not possibly fall on a heart and bring forth no effect…
It was a mixture of ultimate surrender, as I felt myself lose the desire to be in control, just for that moment. It was an acceptance of such grandeur and amazement and as we both stood there, for the first time in years for me, I could barely believe how absolutely unlike anything else in the world this feeling felt.
Everyone needs a spot sometimes, a place where the world grows quiet and solace can be found in the fact that a tree is just… well, a tree. Everyone needs a moment to breathe in the magnificence of the natural beauty that was before us, gifted by the Lord of the Worlds. Sometimes it’s only in the stillness of nature, combined with the soothing scent of towering trees and wistful waterfalls, one finds a purifying bliss… and being with Hamzah, well, I hadn’t realised it before but this is what it took for me to understand who was the centre of the ultimate kind of wealth…
And that was the thing with life, in this day and age, isn’t it? We are so caught up in emails and WhatsApp messages that we forget that there are meant to be real things that we also take much joy in. We forget those moments we could spend obsessing over the perfection of Allah in the curves of a tree’s branches, or watching a spider gracefully spin it’s web. We are blind to the beauty of a blue-bird taking flight or the crusted colours of the leaves in autumn, as they begin to morph. We forget the little things like cascading waterfalls and gorgeously bloody sunsets, capturing the heart of the one you love. We are unaware of the feeling of falling, completely and effortlessly, as those explosions that crackle away like fireworks explode within our souls, allowing ourselves a chance to love so wholeheartedly that we lose the desire to always want to be in control.
And that was just one minuscule part of it… but among the other lessons we may learn along this path— after a long road of falling, tripping, losing, failure, winning and so many mistakes—is that there will be some people you love because of what they give you and the way they make you feel. It will be for it your Nafs, and it will always be about how you feel. So if you’re chasing a feeling, you’ll always be chasing.
But, once in a while, there is another love that can exist.
This love… is not a selfish love and is the rarest type. And if it is pure, and not competing with, the love of Allah Ta’ala Himself, it will also bring about the most joy. To love in any other way is to be needy, to be dependent, to have expectations—all the ingredients for misery and disappointment.
And this is a love that you will give to the creation—not for what you can get in return from them. You will love and you will give, but you will be sufficed from Him. And the one who is sufficed by the Rabb Himself, is the richest and most generous of all lovers.
Your love will be by Him, for Him, and because of Him. That is the liberation of the self from serving any encapsulated thing. And that is freedom. That is happiness.
That is love.
Sincerely hope everyone is well. Abit of a longer nature-inspired post that I did quite enjoy writing…
May Allah Ta’ala enable us to truly appreciate his magnificence when we see it…
Please take note of our very important Sunnah reminders.
Sunnah of (Digital) Company:
We live in a world where digital media surrounds us. We mindlessly forget that we are what we feed, and these WhatsApp, instagram and twitter feeds have an effect on us.
May Allah Ta’ala enable us to be particular even about our digital company, and save us from falling into bad companionship.
Abu Musa reported: The Prophet, (Sallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said, “Verily, the parable of good company and a bad company is only that of a seller of musk and a blacksmith. The seller of musk will give you some perfume, you will buy some, or you will notice a good smell. As for the blacksmith, he will burn your clothes or you will notice a bad smell.”
Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5534,
He replied: “By Allah! To us The Prophet (Sallalahu Alaihi wa Sallam) was dearer to us than our riches our children and our mothers, and was more cherishable than a drink of water at the time of severest thirst.”
SubhaanAllah… what perfect imaan they had… May Allah enable us to practise..💕