When Doorways are Brightened

Bismihi Ta’ala

Part 55

When the light of Islam started spreading to people during the lifetime of our beloved Prophet (Sallalahu Alaihi Wa Sallam), if there is one outstanding lesson that stayed with me… it is that every change, every stage where conditions are altered, has only benefit for the believer.

And that was why this particular Hadith rang so true:

“Amazing is the affair of the believer, verily all of his affair is good and this is not for no one except the believer. If something of good/happiness befalls him he is grateful and that is good for him. If something of harm befalls him he is patient and that is good for him”

(Saheeh Muslim #2999)

And as I glanced out at the beauty of the skies on that particular afternoon, nothing was clearer to me than the fact that like everything thing else, even the constant change of affairs for the believer, only comes with great goodness.

Because often we become blind to the fact, that if only we look at the life of our blessed Prophet (Sallalahu Alaihi wa Sallam), even during the most turbulent times… there was so much to be learnt. So much to note… that when the elation of victory came to his ears, he taught us to smile with appreciation… and at the most gut-wrenching experiences, even he (Sallalahu Alaihi wa Sallam) didn’t hold back his tears. In every avenue, our beloved Prophet (Sallalahu Alaihi wa Sallam) taught us, through his life and his Seerah, that throughout every stage Allah puts us through, throughout every test, there is a beautiful result that not only moulds us, but polishes us to such an extent that we are the ones that shine eternally.

And in the books of Seerah, we understand the truth of these conditions that are so graciously taught. We are shown that after the tragic death of his beloveds, Allah Ta’ala brought our Nabi (Sallalahu Alaihi Wa Sallam)on a spectacular journey to the heavens. After the aching torture of Ta’if, awaited for him melodious songs of the joyous Ansaar as he entered their city. After the heart-wrenching brutality of Uhud and the heartbreaking loss of his beloved uncle, would be a glorious victory at the conquest of Makkah, that sent hearts soaring infinitely…

After every season, every drought, every difficulty… Allah Azza Wa Jal brings forth something so much more splendid… sometimes even beyond what one can ever encompass.

And I was all caught up in my amazement, revelling in the blooming beauties after the winter chills. Spotting the first rose bud of the new season through the front doorway had already brightened my entire day.

I could barely digest the sight of the gorgeously promising stems and shoots, which were boasting their fervour, full of purply-red potential, and as I breathed in the crisp air letting its freshness fill my lungs until I could breathe in no more, I couldn’t help but let my eyes devour their glorious beauty. I wasn’t even sure how we had gotten to this point.

Ah, life. Once again. After the crop has dried and reduced to something that seems irretrievable, Allah’s promise is that He puts His magic into it, and once again, it gets you inundated with splendour over it.

A new change. A new chance. For us, as human beings, it had become such a strange thing. As our lives morphed and changed into captures and content creation, I sometimes wondered if we were even living, or just pretending to.

Turning my face toward the sun, I wondered how humans had been so deluded. I wondered how we willingly traded those real moments for fake ones. How we traded the feeling of being in a moment, to just capturing it. How we compete, in every sense of the word, for virtual lives.

But now… as I savoured the feeling of wet soil, my hands giving into the sensorial experience, after what felt like months…  I felt completely awakened. Inspired. Hopeful. The potential that new opportunities had brought… the medicine that nature had brought in its indulgence, well, I almost couldn’t believe that it was already a whole year since I started and all my plants were still pretty much surviving. Well, most of them anyway…

One, two, three…. well… all the way to sixteen, I had counted.

Though I loved the beauty and grandeur they brought, I wasn’t exactly the dedicated type. I often got caught up in parellel universes and forgot when next I was supposed to be planting but if I wasn’t completely deluded, it seemed like there were actually a few more rose plants than I original had.

I wasn’t sure how that had happened but I did know that Papa had seen to the garden once or twice or at least facilitated it. I just didn’t know who had manicured them so expertly that they looked like they were living an entirely new life.

They were extremely thirsty, but it had not gone without any noticeable advantages. The shoots had appeared almost overnight, with two tiny buds visible, and I knew that the efforts were surely not wasted.

The blazing sun had been tormenting me that day as I squatted next to the flower bed with my gardening set, feeling like I had probably gone fifty shades of sunburnt in that short space of time. Sweat trickled down my chest, but I really didn’t even bother.
I had pulled the bucket out once again with the wheel barrow, making my way to the front of the garden to fill up for the third time now, not realizing what a racquet I was making in the process until I heard the voice of the outdoor worker that Papa used.

“He is asking if we must do it for you?” A voice called out from behind me, in his Zimbabwean accent. “We will water here later.”

I turned slightly, feeling a little awkward.

Firstly, who was the he in question? And secondly, well, how did they even know I was here.

Being a Monday afternoon, when the coffee shop closed, I really expected I had no idea that the noisy wheelbarrow that was passing by the front house every ten minutes had caused a little more of a stir than intended.

“Sorry,” I called, looking at the guy briefly, trying to see if the ‘he’ in question was really him, and wondering if he was watching me.  I mean, was dressed decently but I looked like a hobo, but that was the least of my worries right then. “Who will water them?”

“Zubair say it is better to water them later.”

I nodded. So it was him.

Zubair says. I glanced backwards, glimpsing only the shadow of a figure in the window of the front house. How long he may have been standing there, I wasn’t sure.

But anyway. He was right. I had forgotten. And I was busy with them so I thought I might as well do it. I was lazy to come back later when the sun was a little less severe, and I had no idea he did it personally  every day. In fact, I had a strong feeling that he was probably responsible for its survival.

“Okay,” I said bluntly, closing the water and hoping he would go back inside. “Later is fine.”

After all, it was my home. I just didn’t realise that Zubair had no life outside work and that he did nothing on his day off but watch all the crazy things I got up to. I mean, where was his family? I was itching to ask Papa why he never visited them. It was just so strange.

And as I lowered my head and moved toward the house, taking my personal tools with me, I couldn’t help but feel a little inadequate.

He probably thought I was this silly airhead just interfering with the roses. It was obvious that he had probably been taking care of them all this time, but it didn’t mean that I couldn’t play my part.

And that too, I knew I had to avoid trying to see him now, because well, I knew I had to watch myself. Lower my gaze. Lower my gaze. Lower my gaze.

I mean, I couldn’t stop reminding myself enough but it was really hard. Plus, I wasn’t there for any sinister intentions so I would make more effort to prove my dedication, and ask Papa to drop me off at the nursery that week where I had bought the potted roses from.

Although it wasn’t a fully fledged nursery, I loved what they had done with the place and every time I went there, I just couldn’t help but feel so much at ease.

The thing was, The Rose Lady with the cute little girl, whose name I had come to learn to learn was Khawlah, actually owned the entire place and opened her wonderful garden up to disadvantaged children. She had the most amazing plants and set-up, and the tree! There was nothing more I wanted to do than just sit there with a book and dose off while I listened to the sound of birds teetering above me. And not only did she open it up as a play area… but she had also mentioned that her husband also did Hifdh classes there… which made the place even more amazing.

And of course, my heart was completely melted because the last time I went, there were a whole bus of underprivileged smaller kids who had come to make use of the facilities, while she taught them how to plant seedlings, and they were just so amazing to watch.

I wasn’t sure what her story was, but I remembered her daughter telling me once that her Abba had passed away before she was born and he had cancer. I wanted to cry when she had said it, ok such a indifferent way, almost as if it was a very natural thing to happen. And though I didn’t know any more than that, every time I met the lady, she was so sincere in whatever she did and always gave me extra seedlings to plant and so much of advice, that I kept wanting to go back to support her…

And as I entered the house, still lost in my thoughts, I sincerely hoped that one day,l I could hear and learn from her story. My mind was still stuck on that gorgeous garden, when my sisters voice rang out next to me, making me jump with shock.

“There you are!”

I looked up as I heard her voice, a smile creeping on my face because this was one of the best surprises today. I didn’t even know that Mohsina was back from the farm and the fact that she was here was an immediate anti-depressant.

“Tell me Zaid is here?” I said, hugging her tightly and  looking hopeful, but also knowing that he sometimes went to Liyakets mother when they were

Mohsina’s bright smile was even more promising.

”He is,” she said, as my mother came in with my little sweetheart, and honestly, seeing him made me feel as if my heart was going to burst. I had missed him so, so much.

”Did you tell Nani you are coming?” I said, taking Zaid from my mother whilst she dialled someone on the landline and went out again.

“Ma just did,” she said with a sheepish grin. “And Maahira is also popping in. She’s going back next week after the last Samoosa run. Really waiting to hear about that one! Anyway, I desperately needed to get away from the house. Rabia is driving me bonkers and Hamzah is completely oblivious. He’s not even in a rush to move. I feel like I need to run away.”

Uh oh. I knew that Mohsina’s sister-in-law was a bit of a nosy one, but I didn’t quite understand that she could be so manipulative. At least it was a temporary arrangement that they were all together till their place was ready. But if Hamzah wasn’t ready to move, well….

“Soon you’ll have your space,” I said soothingly, as she rolled her eyes, looking outside as the men left for salaah and Zaid gurgled into my neck.

“If she doesn’t decide she’s moving in with us,” Mohsina retorted, making her way to the three seater couch in the interleading room, and plugged something into the wall. She looked exhausted as she rolled her eyes.

I looked at it, a little confused at first as I saw her opening her cloak, when realisation dawned. I could not believe that I had forgotten!

“Oh my word, Mos,” I squealed, widening my eyes and looking at her as she narrowed her eyes at me. “I completely forgot. How’s the whole dudu-thing going?”

She flushed slightly as she fiddled with her shawl, trying to adjust herslef so she didn’t expose anything unsightly, and then smiled. It really was a tricky thing, this breastfeeding thing, wasn’t it?

“The Dudu thing is making me feel like a cow,” she said, not looking impressed.

I tried not to pay too much attention as the low hum of the pump sounded; playing with Zaid as he cooed and blubbered obliviously.

”Sorry about the noise,” she said, rolling her eyes in exasperation. “Trying to increase supply. It’s like a mission to pump, and you don’t understand how sore it is. It’s just as well that Zaid doesn’t have teeth.”

I grinned.

Now, that, would definitely be funny.

“Hey,” she squealed, not impressed by my concealed giggles as I turned my face away. “Not you too. Hamzah finds the entire thing very amusing. Calls me Cow in the City. Just rude, if you ask me. You guys don’t understand how much of pressure it is. Wanting to succeed. Why don’t you guys try and see how this feels?”

”No way!” I said, looking at her squarely, and then cracking a smile. “Did you offer Hamzah to try too?”

I laughed at the thought while Mohsina just shook her head and gave a small smile as Zaid rolled over and got into crawling position on the carpet. I couldn’t believe he was already so big. It was only a few weeks and he was already like a little man.

“Hamzah just has a big mouth,” she said after a few seconds, rolling her eyes again. “But shame, he helps a lot. I’m quite surprised. Although he is regretting being my Hifdh teacher. It’s the only time I actually see him looking like he may lose his cool. He says he needs more cheesecake supply as payment…”

Mohsina was grinning as she said it, but I was honestly so happy that she actually started with this part of her journey. I knew that she really wanted to start with classes or something else worthwhile.

Honestly, it was the most romantic that the Qur’ān had actually brought them together…

That was like Muslim couple goals.

“You’re lucky he has the patience for it,” I said, thinking how sweet it was. I mean, that was what I wanted. The romantic kind of Muslim love story that couples used each other to get to Jannah together with…

She shrugged, obviously not realising how lucky she really was to find such a good guy after everything, as we heard voices entering the entrance hall. I realised that Maahira or Nani had probably arrived, and Mohsina looked at me, as she answered.

“I know,” she said solemnly, almost as if she read my mind, with a small smile, as Maahira entered. “He’s a great teacher.”

Maahira had literally entered the room, looking af Mohsina with a sly smile as she heard what she just said.

”Who’s a good teacher, eh?” She said with a smirk. “And what exactly is he teaching?”

Mohsina laughed and got up to hug her friend, eager to catch up with all the lost time in between the wedding and Maahira leaving for London again. Since Maahira had been down, it had only been a few times that they had seen each other before Mos made Nikah and then everything just got even more crazy after.

I sat quietly in the corner with Zaid, while I listened to  her talking about the Samoosa run escapades that made her lose hope in ever being married. Now she was ready to go back and hope for better luck next time.

“Or you might find someone in London?” I piped up hopefully, seeing how much Maahira wanted to settle down. And I got it. She wasn’t getting younger. But also, I knew Allah would reveal the right person to get at the right time…

“Yup, but in my circles they won’t exactly do the Samoosa run Halaal kind of way,” she said simply, looking deflated.

“I got a plan though,” Mohsina said, looking at Maahira with a cheeky grin. “Maybe Hamzah and I can come visit and we can make our own kind of Samoosa runs. You know? Hamzah can pick a guy from one of those Turkish places and bam. Why can’t the guys family do all the Samoosa frying for a change?”

Maahira laughed, while they chatted about what the outcomes there would be, while I found my mind actually musing over it too. I mean, okay, maybe not exactly the Samoosa thing, but if a women had to put forward proposals more often and it was actually not looked down as being immodest or forward….

“But why not?” I said, just voicing my thoughts and shrugging just shoulders. “After all, Nabi (Sallalahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) accepted a proposal from Khadijah (RA) and it wasn’t frowned upon at all. She saw him, she admired him, and she put forward her proposal. She was wealthier and shared everything with him thereafter.. What’s wrong with it?”

Maahira agreed, and winked at me.

“You’re right, Jamz,” she said with a grin. “The next guy that I fancy, I’m definitely going to talk to his mother. And you should do it too.”

And while she laughed it off, I couldn’t help but notice Mohsina sneak a sideways glance at me, while I remained silent. For a moment, I was sure that there was a flicker of something in Mohsina’s eye but she didn’t say anything, until Maahira left the seating area to take Zaid to look out the window, while he cooed noisily.

”Jameela,” she said quietly, her brown eyes narrowing slightly as she watched me. “Are you still entertaining thoughts about that guy?”

Oh gosh. Why did I have to put my foot in it.

“What guy?” I said innocently, pulling at a thread on the carpet. I didn’t meet her eye.

“You know who I’m talking about,” she muttered quietly. “You’re still young for marriage. Why don’t you study or something? Get something to secure you. Anything.”

I shrugged. I wasn’t interested in studying, especially not as a security. While Mohsina still believed that a degree was essential, I was pretty content doing a small business or something creative if ever I needed to. I loved to draw, had learned to sew that year … and I really enjoyed designing things too.

After all, I had designed the rooms that were being put up for the glamping site. I was sewing the aprons that the cashier and coffee shop workers used too. I loved using my hands and working with them. It was a constant thing that kept me busy.

The corporate world though, was most definitely not for me, because I had seen first hand how it sucked every ounce out of my sister. I had hated it. If I had to study, an Islamic course, or something at the local madrassa would be better for me. Just not right then.

“I’m happy where I am,” I said. “I help daddy with the coffee shop and the new project. I can bake. Sew. Or do other stuff to earn money. Whatever. And I’m going to be 19 soon…”

Mohsina wasn’t quite impressed though.

”Still too young,” she snapped. “And you know you shouldn’t even think of him. He’s not  an option. He’s got no proper job. No money. No degree. He’s dangerous, in every sense of the word, and I don’t want to see my sister getting hurt.”


Was he really? I mean, I had believed he was but for the past few months, there was nothing further from danger that I saw. He was kind and polite, went to the mosque for every salaah, plus he was modest and extremely well- mannered. Everyone who met him spoke well of his demeanor. I’d never spoken to him unnecessarily or directly, but everything I saw about him wasn’t what she made it out to be.

Mohsina was just forming her own invalid opinions in her head and I didn’t think it was fair. Not fair at all actually.

“I’m not going to get hurt,” I said, shaking my head. “It’s not like that.”

I wasn’t sure how to tell her. Like when you like someone, well… why couldn’t I ask my father for advice? Papa seemed to love him to bits. Maybe he didn’t have money or status, but all that wasn’t important to me. All I wanted was someone who was good and kind and looked after me.

“Just stay away from him,” Mohsina whispered, as Ma and Nani walked into the room now. “Else you know what will happen.”

I sighed, looking at my sister, feeling a little down as I watched Nani go all gaga over her and Zaid, before Hamzah made his appearance after Salaah, and the attention would probably be diverted. I couldn’t even argue my point with her now. Since Mos had mentioned it, I really wondered if she was right. Perhaps I was being a bit too hasty.

And as the rest of them got busy yapping about nothing in particular, and Hamzah and my brother entered on the other side of the lounge, the noise levels were just a little overbearing. And I knew I was being a little grumpy because of what Mohsina had just told me, but I couldn’t help how I felt.

I had made my way to the kitchen to grab a few drinks and clear my head, and just as I opened the fridge, the sound of our house bell had already sounded. And of course, with me being closest to the door, it only made sense that I should be the one to get it. With all the excitement (mostly Nani’s, when she saw Hamzah), who knew if they even heard the bell?

And so, tucking three drinks under my arm, and two in my one hand, so I could free up the other hand to answer the door, I peeped through the window to the right of the door, seeing a Muslim girl at the front patio.

And yes, I was a little paranoid since the last time when our doorway was darkened by Zubair and his uncle, but looking out to see a hijaabi girl with a pretty smile on her face… my heart was already settled.

Pulling the door open, I had plastered a pleasant smile on my face. I had assumed that maybe it was someone who just came to the house instead of the coffee shop, or someone who probably needed directions…

And as I greeted, she hastily replied to my greeting, and while doing so, something in her expression just made me feel at ease with her. For some reason, it felt like I met her before, but I knew I didn’t…

”I’m so sorry,” she breathed, her face all exasperated and full of expression, as she spoke again. “You must be wondering who I am and why on Earth I’m here… my name is Nusaybah…”

”It’s okay,” I said, wanting to explain that we were used to it. But she was already explaining.

“My friend Khawlah… you know… she sells all the amazing garden stuff a few roads away. She says that my brother once had some rose plants delivered to your address. I figured that maybe he may know you guys… Or you may know him?”

And I was a little stunned as I began to process it, because without even knowing, someone had obviously been adding to my rose garden.

“I’m sorry,” I said shaking my head, still a bit confused. “Who is your brother?”

She immediately slapped her palm in her forehead comically, looking ridiculously humoured by her own demeanour. I didn’t realise that just like our doorway was darkened with her brother a few months back, after the doom that came with that… now, with her eccentrically bubbly approach, it was to be most certainly brightened by this very boisterous character…

“I’m sorry,” she blubbered apologetically, her mouth opening comically and her eyes still wide. “Silly me! His name is Zubair. Tall, dark and handsome, you know?! My father is being stubborn, and refuses to even check on him or track him down. I’m only down for one week more and I had to literally do an investigation to find this address. This is my absolute last resort. Please, please, tell me… Do you have any idea where he is?”

Sunnah of Forgiveness:

With the New Islamic Year already here, and these auspicious days, one of the lessons from the Seerah is how Nabi (SAW) forgave his oppressors, and let go of old whims.

A sublime quality that Nabi (SAW) inculcated into his life on various occasions, and especially on the occasion of Hijrah.

May Allah Almighty give us all the ability to forgive others for the wrong they do to us and make us more productive Muslims through this and may Allah forgive us all for our sins, ameen.
O Allah, purify our hearts from grudges, envy, and cheating. O Allah, amend our relations with our relatives. O Allah, amend our relations with our loved ones. O Allah, make life an increase for us in every good and make death a relief for us from every evil with Your mercy, O Most Merciful of the Merciful.

Someone asked Ali (RA): “How much was the Sahaba’s love for the Prophet (Sallalahu Alaihi wa Sallam)”

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..💕















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Not to be Okay

Bismihi Ta’ala


Whether it be within our lives or within our families or within our marriages… sometimes it’s okay for things not to be okay. Everything doesn’t have to always be blooming. We don’t always have to be fine.

I realised a long time ago that not everyone has a beautiful life. Some people are lucky, but many are not destined to have that kind of love that changes your life. Some of us settle for much less. Sometimes it’s what we unknowingly choose for ourselves. Sometimes it happens by default. But at all times… it’s in the Great Plan that Allah has for us…

But sometimes there are people that we come across that just leave imprints in your heart. They come with an important lesson. There’s nothing weird or creepy about it. It’s just the way they are… their demeanor… their approach… the way they present themselves. The way they see life through such beautiful eyes that you can’t help but see it too.

They have something called beautiful character. Not just beautiful. The best of character. And more than money, than looks, than sultry phrases… that character trumps as their most amazing asset. It doesn’t waver because beautiful character is something that’s in-built. It solid. It’s set so deeply in them, that no matter what their situation or circumstance or state of mind… this type of character is what shines through even the darkest of hours.

And yes, through my journey there had been many people that had changed the route, but what I knew for sure was that the moment that my beautiful sister had found the love that had calmed her raging soul, it was like our entire household had calmed with it. Life seemed a little brighter. All the hope was magically restored. Things took a sudden turn for the better. Everyone seemed a little more at peace.

And then, like a bolt of lightning from the blue, came the moment when the news of Aadam’s sickness rocked our world… and one by one, it felt like things around us started to crumble. All I knew for sure was that even though no-one really expected it…  my heart had already sensed it….

“I’m scared.”

I looked at my sister, her brows furrowed as she packed her luggage bag, and I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes as I thought of what these moments were going to bring. I mean, when she had gotten married… I knew she would leave one day… but this time, it just felt so much sooner than what we had all planned.

I never thought I’d hear my fearless sister ever say those words, but right now, at this moment, this is where we were. Although she barely showed it, it had been a while that I could see it in her eyes. The  revelation itself just came as a shock.

”You don’t need to be scared,” I said, trying to steady my voice, despite my own fears. “It’s going to be okay.”

”How do you know that?” She said, pausing in mid-fold and looking up at me quizzically.

The truth was, I didn’t really know. I just had this feeling that even though everything was changing and going a little out of whack, Allah would pull us through.

”I just have a feeling,” I said softly, giving her a small smile.

She paused to take out a few of her toiletries from the cupboard behind her, before turning back to look at me, emotion flooding her dark eyes.

“Do you think Mama would have liked him?”

The sincerity in her simple question caught me off-guard.   I hadn’t thought of my mother in a long while and as her image flashed through my mind, I could feel a lump forming in my throat. Some days I still missed her the way I had when she had just left…

”She would have loved him,” I said, meaning it. I mean, what was not to love about a guy who made my sister as happy as he did?

”Do you know what he told me the other day?”

She looked at me and folded her arms across her chest discontentedly. I looked up at her with slightly narrowed eyes. From what I knew of Aadam, I could only expect something out of the ordinary.

“He said that even if he had  done nothing else in his temporary life,” she started softly. “That if nothing else… it would have been enough that he found me… because it was through this Nikah where he found everything that matters…”

My heart contracted as she said it. It was like poetry.

“My word, Khawlah,” I murmured. “Are you trying to make me jealous?”

If my husband told me that I would have been jumping over the moon. As for my sister, she looked like she was halfway into depression.

”Zuleikha, don’t you get it?” She wailed dismally. “How do you return a love like that? How do you ever reciprocate?”

I looked at her and shook my head, understanding that she had completely missed the point.

”You don’t get it, do you?” I muttered, smacking my palm to my forehead and shaking my head at her. “This kind of love… well, it’s not like that! It’s not a favor that you have to return. Its not palpable or negotiable. It’s a gift, Khawlah. A gift you haven’t seen yet because you’re too scared to. You just have to open your heart and accept it because that’s the beauty in it… when you truly love someone for Allah’s sake and that love changes you.. it doesn’t need to be recompensed, because the reward in the feeling, that love… and that change that comes with it… finding the Creator of it and seeing that beauty of the truth… well, that’s enough. That’s what’s he’s saying. Having that love is worth way more than ever getting it back.”

True love. Pure love. It was the love for Allah that matched no other.

”I don’t know ,” she moaned. “It’s not normal. He’s so amazing and strong and I have no idea how to deal with that.”

I wanted to laugh, as I watched my sister, looking like she was in utter despair. She said the oddest of things and I honestly could not even fathom how her mind worked.

“Sometimes,” she said, dropping her voice. “Sometimes I just wish that he’d show some weakness, you know? That he’d act like a regular patient whose not really okay and let me see him for how he really is…”

Right back at ya, I wanted to tell her.

”Sometimes it’s okay not to be okay,” I finished off for her, smiling and looking at her, just so she knew that I was talking to her too. Just so she knew that she didn’t have to be so strong all the time.

“You don’t always have to be so strong. Do you know Allah waits for us to show some weakness… He wants us to be dependent on Him?”

I smiled at my sister as I spoke, a little amused by her annoyance. She was really one of a kind. And yes, of course I didn’t wish that on anyone, but if Jameel was in the same situation I could already imagine how dismal he would be… I wouldn’t be able to handle the drama.

And as if on cue, it was precisely at that point that Muhammed ran into the room, signaling Jameels arrival, and Khawlah’s sulky face immediately turn to smiles. Muhammed, of course, was ecstatic. Giggling, squealing and the works. He loved both Aadam and Khawlah to bits and it was no wonder why. They were so easy-going and had so much of patience with kids that I really and truly wished that they would one day have their own… hopefully sooner than they had always thought.

Knock knock,” a voice from outside said, and as I turned my head to look, Ahmed was already standing at the door with Jameel in tow, and the older of my girl cousins, whose name was Shaakira, trying to find her way in behind them. I had been wondering where my cousin wandered off today. Sara was her baby sister who was named after my mother. She had the sweetest nature too, unlike Shaakira who I never admitted sometime got on my nerves.

They were  usually always around when they were here… but for the past few days, I had no idea why, but I felt like I had barely seen Shaakira.

”I hear that there’s been a bit of chaos in the household,” Jameel was saying as he stood at the door, to no-one in particular.

Of course he was talking about the recent dynamics between Ahmed and I, but with Khawlah having much else on her mind, I really didn’t want to get into it. Yes, I had every right to be angry after Ahmed changed his mind about his upcoming Nikah. I also had more right to be upset because he refused to tell us who his future now entailed, which I thought was really unfair. For some reason, it was a huge secret and I had decidedly that it was time that I dusted my hands off his issues. I actually didn’t want to even see Ahmed at all, but being at my fathers house left little choice.

”Come on,” Jameel urged, winking and looking at me. “Sort it out. You guys can’t carry on like this.”

I gave him a death look. I felt like telling Jameel to mind his own business as he looked at me, as if it edge me on, but I swallowed my words as I looked back at him, knowing that he had good intentions.

Ahmed and him always had a rocky relationship, and even though it was better than before, there was a lot of room for improvement.

And yes, though I loved my husband, I could hardly compare our relationship to what I often heard my sister say about hers. Fair enough, she hadn’t yet entered into her marital home.. but for Jameel and I, I could safely say that we had our fair share of ups and downs and though I tried to look back at them as lessons learnt, I knew that there were many times when I regretted choices I made or things that happened. And then, when I felt myself feeling down or losing hope, I reminded myself that every relationship had their own set of trials. That everything wasn’t always meant to be perfect. That even the companions and family of Nabi (SAW) had issues and sought advice and guidance for it.

And I recalled clearly reading that even Ali (RA) and Faatima (RA) had their own set of issues where he would walk out and Nabi (SAW), on various occasions would bring the two beloveds of his together again. To disagree and have problems were also part of marriage and love, but the most important part was to rise above it and forgive, because their love for each other was on a level that put everything else aside. Their characters exceeded all else.

And that’s what I was striving for. Despite  mishaps. Despite disagreeing. Despite the past. There were times when I got so angry and frustrated, and times when it was so easy to let my tongue slip and say something potentially hurtful.

It has been related on the authority of Sahl ibn Sa’d that the Prophet (SAW) said,
“Whoever can guarantee what is between his jaws and what is between
his legs, I guarantee him the Garden.”[9]

SubhaanAllah. What a great reward for a little restraint.

I kept silent as Ahmed tried to make small talk, giving Jameel a small smile instead for trying to make some effort. He stood at the door, calling Muhammed to come out to give us time to talk it out, and obviously hoping for some resolution to the current issue of Ahmed’s indecisive life that was really driving me mad.

I honestly felt that I couldn’t tell him without causing a huge argument… But I knew very well that my brother had serious commitment issues. The minute something got a little serious… he seemed to suddenly wall up and think nothing of just walking away. Obviously, it had a lot to do with our childhood and his dodgy past but he had to move past it at some point. I was still upset with him for making me cancel the reservations and plans that I had made for his Nikah, and I had made it known that I won’t be partaking in anything that he was planning for the future. I know that it was a tad bit harsh but I really thought that he would do well to learn some lessons…

“Can you guys leave us alone now so I can have some bonding time with my sister?” I said, knowing that today wasn’t going to be the day we would get any positive answers from him and not really wanting to pin my hopes on it.

Ahmed raised his eyebrows at me.

”She’s my sister too,” he said, his amber eyes narrowing. I could tell it was because he wanted to test the waters with me.

I ignored him whilst Shaakira and Khawlah spoke about the big move that I could see my sister was still mentally preparing  herself for. Of course, it didn’t help that this wasn’t the usual kind of ‘move-in-with-your-husband’ kind of shift. The fact that Aadam was not exactly in the most amazing state definitely dampened the spirit.

”So did he tell you where you’ll are staying?” Shaakira was asking, a little too excitedly, as she looked at Khawlah inquiringly. “I mean, like did he say it for sure? Will you guys be spending the night together?”

She giggled and looked as me and Ahmed as she said it, and I could help but get annoyed.

And of course, as she spoke, I couldn’t quite help but think of how friendly and open she was being with Ahmed. Like, what was even going on? How was Ahmed even entertaining this?

If Khawlah or I had to behave like their were no boundaries with our male cousin Faheem, Ahmed would probably murder us. This bizarre behavior from Shaakira barely fazed him.

I narrowed my eyes at her as I watched them talking, not being able to help thinking that she was being a little too chatty and nosy about my sister’s married life for my liking.

Khawlah was, as usual, evasive with her answers, obviously feeling the same way. I couldn’t help but think that even though my cousin was just a year younger than Khawlah, she was seriously so much less mature. It was evident from her silly remarks that were a little too daring. Khawlah and her were worlds apart.

I held my tongue again, biting back the urge to say something nasty. I did, however, shoot Ahmed a reproachful glance which sent him out of the room with his tail somewhere between his legs, but Shaakira still refused to stop with the questions about Aadam and what it was like to be a part time wife, and how Khawlah needed to get her hair and nails done before-hand so she could be presentable. Her blabbering just didn’t end… to the extent that it was actually getting exhausting.

Somehow with people who are familiar, it was just easier to lose it. I tried to focus on her good points even though she was seriously getting on my nerves…

And of course, I’m sure it was just as well that Jameel called for me from the kitchen, signaling that he was ready to leave. His sister had some plans for the night that Jameel had inadvertently got thrown into. Jameel was very much unlike Aadam. Whereas Aadam got along with everyone and loved being around our family,  because Jameel was the type that easily tired of people, I knew that when he was around I had to cut my time short here… and today, although it was my last chance to really have proper quality moments with my sister, I knew that this was for the better. I was really about to snap with my cousin.

And although Khawlah was probably going to be back home intermittently, I couldn’t help but feel a heavy weight settle on my heart as I hugged her goodbye that day, knowing that she was entering a new stage of her life that was probably going to take a lot from her too. Emotionally. Physically.  Mentally too. And yes, I had accepted that everyone doesn’t have that great and amazing love that’s waiting for them, but I was certain that from what I had seen about these two lovebirds… and all the amazing things she had told me… I truly believed that with Aadam, she had got more than the bargain…

And my mind was kind of consumed in the moment as I thought about life and love and everything that the year had brought for us. I couldn’t believe that there was just a few months till the end of it. It meant that it was now over a year for Foi Nani and going onto eleven years for my mother. There were times like these, when the family was together and events that were momentary that made us miss them all the more.

And as I turned to go down the passage, deep in thought, pausing at the kitchen, and hearing my uncles voice in there, I couldn’t help but pop my head around to greet him. I like my uncle. Despite the issues in the past, he was one of the few family members we had

It was just that, as I saw him sitting at the table with his firmly set jawline and an unimpressed expression on his face, I already sensed that things were not okay. I supposed that kind of explained why Ahmed had come to the room in the midst of our tension… probably trying to avoid a bigger tension that was waiting to erupt. There was an entire romantic escapade that was going on right under our noses, and I couldn’t believe that it had gone unnoticed till now.

And yes, I couldn’t quite believe that I had missed this most important … the answer to Ahmed’s evasive revelation about Nikah.. but the fact that he was now in hot water with our once evasive uncle was definitely going to stir up a little more drama than I thought.

Facing my uncle was the one thing that my fearless brother was actually wary of.  This time Ahmed’s risky choices had really put a foot in it… and the result wasn’t going to be fun…

Don’t forget our Sunnah this holiday! 

Umar ibn Abi Salamah said: I was a young boy in the care of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), and my hand used to wander all over the platter (of food). The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to me, “O young boy, say Bismillaah, eat with your right hand, and eat from what is directly in front of you.” 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 5376; Muslim, 2022).

Drink water while taking three breathing pauses. It is prohibited to drink water in a single gulp as our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said: “Do not drink water only in one breath, but drink it in two or three breaths.”

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In the Moment

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


Roses are Red,

Violets are Blue,

I don’t do poetry,

But I do love you. 

The soft tune of the beautiful Nasheed played as I glanced at my phone, my brow instantly furrowing as the words lit up on my screen.

“What was that..”

I mean, my phone had buzzed and it was there just a second ago, and now… it was gone. It was just a fleeting moment of cuteness, and now…

And wait, did it actually say “I love you“?

“Hey, don’t act like that,” Aadam said loudly, glancing at me and pretending to be hurt. “That was my hard-written poetry. It took me like, a whole day to write.”

”Is it another one of your hidden talents now?” I asked, trying to be light-hearted, despite my hammering chest.

Well, trust Aadam’s to send it to me as a ‘flash message’ which was probably gone somewhere to Jupiter by now. Besides not being the best with gadgets, there was no way I would even know how to get if back… even if I tried.

“How did you do that?” I turned to look at him.

He narrowed his eyes at me, taking them off the road for a second to do so.

The Freemasons,” he whispered, looking all mysterious, as he quickly fixed his gaze on the road ahead again.

I wanted to giggle. Really? The Freemasons?

“By the way, you look like a million bucks today,” he said suddenly, raising his one eyebrow. Another talent he had. “I think that may be the reason they’re stalking you.”

Despite my mood, I couldn’t help but laugh.

“Is that a smile I see?”

I kept silent. My tummy was doing weird things again.

“The least a gal can do is say thank you…” he said, in a cowboy accent.

“Did you copy and paste?” I asked, trying to keep my face straight.

Aadam chuckled, as he drove, moving his free hand toward mine as he grasped it tightly. His warmth was comforting, although it wasn’t yet completely familiar to me.

The late night phone calls were by the way. We had barely spent any time together, well… in person… but it was amazing how we just synced with each other… even when we were still just a little more than strangers. He was an easy person. I felt like a huge chunk within my chest that had already been irrevocably surrendered to this guy, and there was really no going back from here.

“You’re a real toughie, aren’t you?”

I grinned at his statement. I didn’t sway easily. That was right.

The robot was red, and he turned to me for  a second, with that intimate look he usually had when he wanted to say something serious. I knew him that much to understand his words were probably going to be a little more important than usual…

”Listen, Angel,” he said, the corners of his mouth turning up slightly. He looked a bit hesitant about his next words, though.

“Don’t take it personally, yeah? Mum’s a bit… difficult.”

I breathed out, thinking about earlier that evening. Earlier, when his mother just ignored me as if I was not even there.

”I don’t think she likes me very much,” I said, a little quietly.

Okay, so I kind of guessed it when I didn’t get a huge welcoming smile from her. I knew that Rubeena’s mother would be a challenge though, but I was not going to let her break me. Maybe she just needed some time.

“That’s nuts!” He exclaimed, shaking his head. “Don’t you dare even think that! I still can’t believe that she did that… I mean you’re a guest, and I know what that means now… but Mum… she doesn’t know better.”


I supposed he was right in a way. That was a bit of the problem these days. I remembered Foi Nani always talking about guests. She used to say Mehmaan.

When Mehmaan come, treat them like royalty.’

It sounded so old-fashioned, but I didn’t understand it back then. How important it was to honor your guest.. and how much of reward there is in entertaining them. This is the beauty in knowing our faith… it’s perfection and hospitality knows no bounds.

“I mean, the treatment I receive as a guest when I go anywhere Khawlah… especially when I’m with the guys…. it’s beauty.”

I wanted to ask him more, but I felt like a lump was stuck in my throat.

“It’s okay,” I said, a little shakily. “I’m not really a guest..”

”A new daughter in law should be treated better than a guest,” he said stubbornly, and I kept silent as I saw his jaw clenching tightly, as if he had really taken it personally.

It was the first time I had seen such a adamant side of Aadam and it was a little scary.

My mind was occupied with worries about the time Aadam would be away. He didn’t even get to tell his mother the big news. My heart burned for him, because I could tell that he was so excited, especially about telling her. No matter what she did… Anyone could see his mother was really important to him. It was something that concerned me yet also contented me as well. He was really a good guy.

And talking about honouring guests, Aadam’s big news was precisely that. I couldn’t forget the words he uttered when  he told me as we sat on the handmade swings, swaying side by side.

Allah’s called me to meet him,” he had finally said. “I’ve just been called for Hajj.”

He looked like he couldn’t believe it himself. Apparently, he had applied the previous year with a few of the guys he had met.

 And of course, I sucked in my breath as he said it, because I was so overwhelmed.

“That’s amazing,” I said, a little dreamily.

He’d been called as a guest… to the best place. And of course, I couldn’t help the tugging feeling at my heart as I felt its throb.

Without me? He was going to the best land in the world… with the best journey of a lifetime… and he was doing it without me?

Oh, my heart.

I could still picture the beauty of the Ka’bah, all those years ago when we had gone with Mama, the year before she got really sick. It was our last trip… her last wish that Abba had fulfilled. My heart yearned to hear the hustle and bustle Makkah again… To breathe in the sweet air of Madinatun Nabi… To walk towards the Haramain.. With that feeling of closeness to the most Beloved of Allah swelling in my heart…

But Allah knew whose call was there… and He knew when our Labbaik will be answered.

And of course I would never stop him from going. His mother though… she still didn’t give him a hearing. She had point blank refused to leave the room that she stayed locked in, and we eventually all left with heavy hearts to follow Rubeena home. She wanted us to come in for tea but I really didn’t feel like it. I just wasn’t in the mood.

I really just wanted to go home. To crawl under my decade-old lilac duvet and live there till morning.

I loved that Aadam was so positive but the reality was that his mother wasn’t going to warm up to me any time soon.

And I was trying to be positive too. I mean, I was trying to understand their mothers point of view. I got that she felt threatened, insecure and all the rest of it… I also got that she really and dearly loved her darling son and I did not want to cause problems between any of them. I just needed us be civil to each other.

Aadam sped up as he took the off-ramp, and I clung onto my seat as he took a turn, glancing at my tightened knuckles in amusement.

“I see you don’t like my car?” he said, with a small smile.

“Well…” I started, not wanting to be rude either. We were brought up differently. Different values.. opinions… different things were important to each of us.

Besides, although Abba had been doing really well at one stage, Foi Nani always gave him a scolding when she saw him getting too flashy. That said, he had owned one really expensive car when Aunty Nas was married to him (it was her request, as you could imagine)…. and I suppose that could kind of explain why I hadn’t ever been a fan of fancy cars.

The thing is, when it came to materialistic things, I think we were just tuned differently. Childhoods, by default, are inherently magical. My parents strongly believe that we didn’t need things to make it that.  With us, Foi Nani and Abba always believed that extra toys, birthday parties and unnecessary outings were just wasn’t what it took to make things amazing. No matter what we had, as a child, everything was still magical.

The thing is that we will keep on filling ourselves with Duniyaa to satisfy our desires. This world and it’s love knows no bound… Whether it be shoes, handbags or holidays to tour the world.. all it is is more extravagance and the greed of more and more. Posting pictures, portraying this kind of lifestyle that we are living for this world … when we have this overwhelming desire to show others what we have… it becomes a disease, and creates a desire in others to have more and more.

And then, man’s greed will have no end, as long as he lives in this world.

He goes on entangling himself in one thing and another for increase in his income, for more luxury, for more pomp and fashion… having no rest to even remember the One who had blessed him with it all. This is why our beloved Prophet (SAW) made the Du’aa:

Allahuma Aj’al Rizqah Aalah Muhammadun Quwtah 

Oh Lord! Let the provisions of my family be a bare sufficiency” (i.e. just enough for their bare needs, lest they be entangled in the vicious circle of getting more and more.)

That was the Du’aa of the most beloved of Allah (SAW).  I mean, think about it… while he lived, Allah Ta’ala never let that wealth enter his household. He didn’t want the light of Nabi (SAW) to be contaminated with the filth of this world.

And I knew Aadam was young and he had worked hard for his money… but I knew this was also where my test was. This was where our differences lie. I hated being so rigid, but having these opinions were part of who I am. Besides, I wasn’t exactly the type that liked the attention. How did I explain it to him in the best way?

“Well, it’s not exactly my favourite choice,” I said carefully.

And although his face fell, he knew exactly what was on my mind.

“That’s it,” he said immediately, throwing his hands up in the air. “I’m selling it. Really. I just needed that push. Just imagine it’s already gone, okay? Anything else? You know I’ll do anything for you, yeah? Just to make you happy. Just to make sure you know that you did make the right choice…”

I grinned. He didn’t have to do anything for me. But yes, It was kind of amazing…

“Nah, thats it for now,” I said, with an hint of feigned fussiness. “Let me sleep over it and I’ll have more requests tomorrow.”

I knew what I really wanted. I just wished that he could change his mother’s heart.

And of course, I knew there was only one thing that could change her heart.

“Okay, whatever you want, I’m ready for it. And if I can’t do whatever it is… I’m going to have to be making a fervent Du’aa…”

I swallowed my emotion as he said it. I wanted to cry on his shoulder. Of course, he was going to the best of places to do it, and he had to plead with Allah to make it happen…

“Just give her a call when I’m gone, yeah?” He suddenly said, looking as if he was thinking really hard about this one.

I wasn’t sure what to say. I felt torn. I really didn’t want to. I supposed that’s what people mean when the say marriage isn’t easy. It’s not always all peachy… barely always rosy. Not always perfect, with that swept me off my feet, cloud-nine kind of feeling.

Yes, those moments are part of it, and they are beautiful and inspiring and oh-so-intoxicating, but there are moments when reality is harsher than we think.

Everyone has their tests. Some people deal with difficult husbands. Some people have difficult wives. Some people have other trials in their lives… in their marriages… infertility, abuse, depression… the list goes on…

I found myself thinking of Zuleikha. Of Rubeena. Life wasn’t easy. Marriage wasn’t smooth-sailing. I just hoped and prayed that I’d make the right choices if I ever got there.

I, on the other hand, just had one woman who seemed like she wanted my blood. She probably wouldn’t even talk to me. I didn’t say anything though because just as  he rounded into Rubeena’s street behind her, the pile-up of cars that seemed like they were stationed around Rubeena’s property caught our eye.

Of course, Aadam sped up as we reached the house, and with a worried look on his face, pushed his door open with such a force that I thought it was going to fall off. All I could see was him sprinting toward the house like an Olympic athlete, Kurta lifted, and panic sleeping through every bone.

There were about seven cars all parked awkwardly around the house, and amongst them was a car with flashing lights that had just arrived on the scene. Of course, my heart was thudding incessantly in my own chest as I fiddled with the finicky handle of the car, anxious to know what was going on too.

Of course, my first thoughts were the kids. The kids. I had to check on them. I didn’t want them to go in, if anything was wrong…

I sprinted over to Rubeena’s car, just as she arrived back there, looking like she was in turmoil . He face was a ghastly white and her eyes were wide with shock. I offered the kids some comforting words just before I rushed over to her, in kind of a panic. She looked like she had seen a ghost.

Rubeena!” I said, clicking my fingers in front of her face, as she stared into space. She looked like she was in a trance.

Now, I was getting really scared. Not to mention, absolutely distressed. Something was wrong.

Khawlah…” she almost whispered, and just as I was about to get to her, a figure from the inside emerged, their words colliding over each other as I tried to comprehend something from the jumble of sentences they were rattling off…

My heart was bursting with anxiety. The moments seemed to drag as I looked from them to her, and then back as I tried to figure out who this man really was… and then, just as I kind of made sense of it, and all the puzzles pieces started clicking into place… without any warning…

Rubeena’s body just collapsed to the ground.


A little bit of drama … please do remember this writer in all your special Du’aas

Much love, 

A 🌸

Especially in these Mubarak days, let’s remember to make extra Ibadat.

A tip that’s also a Sunnah:  

Aaisha (RA) said about the Beloved 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






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Escape to Nowhere

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem


“Where were you?”

My words were acid-like as I saw my sister stroll in at nearly 5-o-clock that afternoon. What on earth was she doing out till so late? I’m sure Abba will let her have it if he knew.

“Um, I,” she stumbled over her words relentlessly and I narrowed my eyes at her suspiciously. “I had something to sort out.”

I wasn’t going to let it go. Later on I would pursue this, but as Khawlah turned away from me and made her way to her room, I just felt so drained. So indifferent to everything else.

She wasn’t looking at me properly, and I understood why. Even looking at myself was a task, and everytime I caught sight of my battered face, I literally wanted to tear it off.

Today, instead of it looking better… it looked ten times much worse. It felt like I had been hit like a ten ton truck… although that could very likely be due to the lack of sleep too.

I touched my face for the umpteenth time that day, wincing again as I pressed the tender contours of my bruised eye.

The blood that had been fresh yesterday had formed a soft but painful scab on the inside of the wound, but I knew that it was just a matter of time before it would start to heal properly.

My new phone that jameel had bought for me buzzed as I sat on the front couch, turning my face slightly so I could see the recipient of its vibrations.

“Please answer.”

The words stared at me as I looked at my phone, already annoyed at the sender. Jameel was pestering since the morning, and all I wanted to do was be left alone. I was still reeling from yesterday… I hated the way he made me feel, and he needed to know it. My phone buzzed again, and although I tried so hard to fight the urge, I could not help but look down.

“I won’t do it again. I promise. I love you.”

The screen was almost pleading with me, taunting me to respond to its appeals.

I thought of Jameel’s handsome face. How I loved him. Moreso, I loved the life he was giving me. The luxuries. My husband was my weakness, and he knew just how to get me.

I just couldn’t forget his look of utter indifference as I had cried out in pain.

My mind played back the memories from that fateful afternoon, and I couldn’t help but remember the series that all started with the visit to Aupnty Romana. It was the third time I had stepped foot in the mansion-like home, and as usual, they were all gushing over Jameel like he was some kind of god.

Of course, he loved the attention he was getting. I did too. The fact that he was my husband, and came home with me every night would make it all okay. It didn’t matter that he would be looking at every woman around… he was still mine.

“You two look more and more gorgeous every time I see you guys!” Aunty Romana gushed, squealing in delight as Jameel leant forward to hug her lightly. I couldn’t help but feel flattered at her comment, because I knew I had made an extra effort that day.

I reached forward to hold his other hand, a little insecure. It was one of those big cousin get togethers and I wanted to stay as close to my husband as I could.

“You know Uncle G will be so proud of you, when he hears the good news about the contract,” she winked at us, and then tossed her hair back as she screamed for her husband.

“I’ll go find him,” Jameel said a bit too eagerly, and I knew it was because he was itching to escape her penetrating gaze. Jameel didn’t deny it when I had mentioned that ahe was obsessed with my him, and I knew that he wasn’t sure how to react to it. She was so much older, and of course, like a mother-figure to him. She was so obvious about her sugar-Mummy crush that it made me feel sick.

Of course, anything to do with money, or earning more money of which there was already too much, was a huge achievement. I didn’t deny it because of course, I benefited immensely too. All the good stuff I could ever dream of was at my disposal. I lived the life of a queen, loved it, and Jameel never said no to anything. Besides that, he would spoil me relentlessly, and I couldn’t complain.

I could see Jameel swiftly casting his gaze around the room, and I followed him as he went forward, my six inch heels just a little wobbly on my unsturdy feet.

I knew I had no reason to feel insecure. Today I had made an extra effort… and I knew, to him, I was looking great. Jameel had put his stamp of approval on my royal blue skinny pants and white zipper shirt. Casual and carefree was the look I was going for, and I let my hair down for the first time, loving the feeling of being free and fitting in.

All his cousins were around, and I didn’t want to look backward. I greeted them enthusiastically, spotting his cousin who I remembered meeting the last time. Her name was Layya and today she wore a stunning gold dress, that again sat above her knee. She had the most perfect and toned legs, and she knew it. Her hair was up in a bun, and it was no doubt that this cousin of Jameel’s was his favourite, and probably the most attractive too. The familiar green monster was brewing within me, although I told myself not to be ridiculous.

Couldnt she dress a little less openly? I thought to myself, hating the way Jameel went forward and greeted her affectionately.

Even though I still didn’t like her, I understood now what my mother-in-law was talking about. Jameel had his father’s habit. With Jameel’s wondering eyes, I had to keep him interested. I just wished that he could focus on me now too, that we were in public. As I caught sight of myself in the surrounding mirrors, I could see my own reflection behind my husband.

I looked gorgeous. I knew it. He had told me so too. So what the hell was his problem?!

“Jameel, can we go outside?” I whispered to him as he greeted his uncle, wanting to get away from the crowd for a bit.

I could see he was annoyed by my suggestion by the slight frown on his face, and he ignored me as he spoke to his uncle about the new contract he had gotten, which was the highlight of the year and why we had been invited here in the first place. I felt even more awkward.

There were a few of his female cousins around, and even though I had met them before, I wasn’t sure how to strike up a conversation. I sauntered off to the outside area, eager to be out of the spotlight for a bit.

The function was fully catered and I joined the other younger girls who were there while they ate whilst standing, listening to their conversation and saying as less as I could manage. There was no way I could be the odd one out and find a place to sit. I would look like a real eyeball if I had to worry about the Sunnah of eating right now, even though Mama had always been so strict about it. Mama didn’t know about these kind of functions back then. She didn’t know how these people would judge me.

They weren’t unfriendly. They just spoke on another wavelength to me. It took me a while to realize that KUWTK was a programme on television, and that the sisters they were talking about were actually celebrities.

I blushed as they spoke about baby daddy’s and some other stuff I found a little x-rated. Most of those girls were younger than me… I couldn’t believe they even knew about those things.

I hastily made an excuse to leave the crowd, eager to find my husband again. I didn’t want to smother him, but I was actually missing his voice.

I sauntered off to the sitting lounge, knowing I could get some peace there. It was just as I entered, that I saw Jameel sitting there, and he looked in deep conversation as he spoke. I took a step back and watched him, not wanting to be rude either. He wouldn’t like it if I interrupted him, so I moved slightly more out of view, not expecting to see his cousin sitting so close next to him, that I almost missed her completely.

I jerked back in shock… just catching sight of my husband’s hand on her bare thigh.

I could not believe it. Why on earth were the two of them alone? What exactly was going on?

My senses were sent into shock as I literally ran out of the room. I wasn’t sure what was happening. I wasn’t sure if Jameel saw me. Tears blurred my vision as I ran… not even knowing where I was going. All I could think of was Jameel and his hand on his cousin’s thigh. It played on my mind, over and over, until I literally wanted to puke.

I ran outside, far from everyone, reeling over on the side of the driveway, trying to balance on my heels and compose myself at the same time. My stomach was churning. My eyes were burning. The bile was collecting in my mouth as I tried to keep my vomit inside.

I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to. I didn’t want to vomit here.

“Are you okay?”

The voice was dripping with concern as I looked up, with great difficulty, to see one of Jameel’s male cousins, looking at me with worry. He was as tall as Jameel, and his eyes were slightly lighter than usual. They reminded me of my own.

I quickly looked away, not knowing what to say. Hoping to control the nausea. It was the first time I had been confronted by a strange male, and now was not exactly an ideal time.

My stomach churned once again, and this time, I opened my mouth and I couldn’t keep it in any longer.

With desperation, I clung to the shrub next to me, and retched with all my might. It was only then that I felt strong hands hold me back from falling into my own vomit, and although I could not stand the thought of a strange man touching me, there was nothing I could do but let him merely hold me up as I felt like my entire stomach was emptied.

I shook myself free as I felt the nausea subside, not knowing how to explain to him that he shouldn’t be touching me. I couldn’t even look up, and hearing his soothing words, asking me politely if he could call some help, I managed to look up at him again.

“What the hell?!”

It wasn’t him speaking and he didn’t say hell. He used a more abrupt version.

It was Jameel. That was Jameel’s voice. It seemed like he was looking for me, and he rushed up to us, pushing the other guy away as he lifted me off the ground, trying to balance my unsteady legs.

“Leikha, what the shit is going on?!” He said, not only addressing me, but also the guy who was trying to help me. “And why the hell are you touching my wife, bru?! Piss off!”

I couldn’t see straight. I couldn’t think. I just let him guide me to the car, letting him jump in and drive me away. It all happened so fast. I wasn’t sure how to ask him.

I could only think of that Hadith that Mama used to read to us. The one just stood out to me so clearly…. About everything bad that happens to us was because of our own sins… our own mishaps.

I was sorry. I was bad. I was sorry that I had been bad. I could only think about how I violated my own principles. How I had let myself down. How I had let my Allah down. Now it was too late. Now my husband was a cheater. A cheater.

“I hate you,” I spat, not knowing what else to tell him. Him and Layya. I could  not swallow it. What would he say? Should I ask?

He looked at me, and then, all of a sudden, he stopped the car. Dead. We were on a side road near our home, and I couldn’t even muster up the courage to tell him more or to ask him… because I was still feeling so weak.

You hate me?!” He said, his voice slightly raised. His eyes were thunderous with anger, and I flinched as he spoke, his voice booming again.

You dress like a whore… you act like a whore…  and you hate me?!

Jameel’s eyes were flashing angrily as he watched me, waiting for my reaction. I was scared. So so scared.

I had never seen him like this. I had never heard him say things like this. Why was he being like this?

It wasn’t  him.

It wasn’t him. It wasn’t.

Okay. It was him. It was. But why?

He was just angry. Maybe he thought I had asked that guy for help. Maybe he thought something else. And as I sat there, making excuses for him, I knew that something bad was coming.

And then it happened.

The voice was screaming out to me in my head as he lashed out, and I couldn’t believe that it was my Jameel who was doing this to me. I couldn’t believe that he was destroying me like this.

The shooting pain wasn’t immediate. At first I was numb, as he issued not one, not two, but three pulsating lashes… then… then I felt the burn. Then I felt the stinging on the side of my face.

I reached up to my cheek and looked at him in disbelief, and almost immediately, the anger in his eyes had dissipated. Instead, now, all that was in his eyes was fear. Fear and desperation.

“Leikha…” he breathed, and I could see that he wanted to talk. Talk. That’s what Jameel was good at. Talk his way through business. Talk his way to charm… talk his way out of an accusation he knew I had against him.

I wasn’t sure what to do. I wasn’t sure how to act. All I knew was that I had to get out for now.

Without even thinking, I reached for the door handle, and I opened it, knowing that all I could do was run. It didn’t matter how far. It didn’t matter how safe. It didn’t matter that I would go back.

I had to go. For now, I had to escape.

Dear readers

A bonus post and change in theme again as we start to highlight some important aspects that I wanted to bring in. ✨

There is a Hadith that mentions that our ruin will sometimes also come in the form of Duniyaa luxuries, and if we persist on disobeying Allah, these comforts are actually a punishment for us.

May Allah Ta’ala save us all…

Much love

A 🌸


A Change of Chance

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem

Khawlah: When the sun was at its brightest

I giggled in unison with Ahmed, my elder brother, running down the darkened passage as we tried to hide from Foi Nani. Glittering gleams of light streamed through the study window blinds as we entered it, shedding strips of sunlight onto the oak sideboard that filled up the small room. We grinned at each other in childhood ecstasy as Ahmed peeped out, before hearing little footsteps coming towards us.

“They’re here, Foi Nani,” our baby brother screamed excitedly, as if he was the one we were playing hide and seek with.  I rolled my eyes at Ahmed, and he shook his head at me with a knowing glance. Yunus always spoilt the fun.

“Let’s act like we are invisible,” I said to Ahmed, grinning again and squinting my eyes in the famous way I always did when I wanted to appear a little dorky. I cocked my head from side to side, letting my childish locks sway, finding the whole game even more amusing as we tried to hide behind the curtains and completely ‘disappear’. I supposed it was my way of escaping reality, even though I didn’t know it at that time. All I knew was that I was having fun. Lots of it.

I knew the reality too.

Mama was sick. But that didn’t mean that we couldn’t have fun. We were just trying to make the most of the situation. We were only kids.

When Mama was well, Abba would take us to the most extraordinary places when we were on holiday. Now that Mama was always in bed,  life had taken a turn towards monotony. Day in and day out, the routine was the same for a while.

She was sick for a long time before she eventually gave up. It wasn’t that she was fighting to stay alive for the world. At that tender age, I understood that she was worried about us. I knew what she wanted from us… and as I grew up, I understood what she feared.

Abba was different. Don’t get me wrong. He loved Mama in a way that no-one could comprehend. But he was born into a background of confusion, disunity and even abuse.

Dadi was a revert, and he always said that she was awesome. It was just that Dada and Dadi had to work hard in the shop and would sometimes leave him at the family house to be taken care of. From what I understood at that time, the family people weren’t the nicest of people, and they didn’t like him much. I couldn’t understand why, because to me, my Abba was the best. Well, at that point- he was better than a super hero to me.

“Not everyone in life has it easy like you’ll,” he always said. “Some people work. Some people work really hard, and sometimes they still don’t come out.”

Obviously we didn’t know what he was going on about. For us, the sun was at its brightest. Dada would just look from his space at the end at the table, and nod his head. Yes, even if Mama wasn’t going to fully recover, it didn’t mean that everything would just diminish, right?

Wel, that’s the thing with this world. What a facade. It even fools us into thinking that we will always be the way we are… always stay the way that we were. They had it tough, but that was over now, right?

Yes, we had been duped. Abba worked hard to get to where he was. We weren’t living in a mansion with multiple servants or anything, but we lived a comfortable life. Really comfortable. Some would say even spoilt.

And then of course, it happened. Our worst fears, and the doom that was pending.  Mama died. One day we woke up and Mama and Abba weren’t there. No one had to explain to us because we already knew.

The day of Mama’s funeral was the day that a lot of things came into perspective for me. People were rushing around in a sort of frenzy, doing all sorts of things at the same time. Yunus and I just sat in a corner of the room, not really knowing what else to do. I wished I could go sit in my room and play with my new doll house, but Foi Nani had said that we must read.

I was only 6. What did I know?

I didn’t even know what to read. Since mama couldn’t do madrassa with us for a few months, I had even forgotten what I could say. How I could pray.  I moved the beads on the tasbeeh I held in my hands saying ‘Allah’, because that’s all I remembered.

Allah. Allah. Wasn’t He always there? Allah. 

The body was brought in as we sat, all clad in white.

Mama. That was our mama.

I shivered as the cold winter air creeped through the open door,  making me feel as if I was more alone than ever. Even though I was surrounded by people, my heart held an emptiness that only my siblings could comprehend.

Death was hard. Brutal.  Painful and imposing. It didn’t wait until your children were old enough. It didn’t wait till you  had prepared for it. It was sudden and savage, and it ripped people apart. It tore up homes and it bruised our inner-most souls. It hurt. Yes, it hurt so much. So so much.

We looked at each other, all four of us, but none of us smiled.

Today, there would be no smiles. Not from us. No running in the passage. No playing hide and seek. No laughter or giggles.

For once, the silence in our house was a sweet one to our ears.

We didn’t want to hear joyful outbursts. We couldn’t even manage any sad smiles. Today everything was different.

Our entire world was in limbo.

Everything had changed.



Dearest readers

I know I have been off the radar for ages, and this post is a bit sad. But it’s only the beginning and I’m hoping to add some really beneficial lessons. 🌷InshaAllah. Instead of a always having romance, and making that a central theme, I thought it would be good to add some other genres in to our Muslim blogs.

May it be beneficial.


Amatullah  🌸



A Way Out

 Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

The future is a mystery. A mystery of many twists and unprecedented occurrences, but a means to mould us and make us into exactly who we are meant to be.

Regardless of what we know, we still spend our lives worrying about the future, planning for the future and trying to predict the future. As if the ‘future’ is the only thing that keeps us going.

But we don’t realise that the true future is what should actually get us to stop. Just stop the chase, and stop the constant rivalry.

Our real future…

Should the home of of our deepest fears. It should be hopeless dread. Fearful anticipation. Remind us of the cutter-off of pleasures. The final destination.

It is said that the intelligent believer thinks of death twenty-five times a day.

Twenty five times. I don’t even scrape five.

But basically, he reminds himself of his dark doom, more than once every waking hour. He reinforces that every single thing that he is enjoying right now, will basically perish. He reaffirms that, of course, in this temporary world, we are most definitely never truly free.

The simple truth is this: It is only when one turns his heart completely to God, does he reach true freedom.  Just as the fire couldn’t burn Prophet Ibraahim (AS), the ‘fires’ of the creation cannot harm the one whose heart is immersed in his Lord. The financial, physical, emotional, social, and psychological fires cannot harm the one whose heart faces his Rabb.

“Strange is the case of a believer, there is good for him in everything—and this is only for the believer. If a blessing reaches him, he is grateful to God, which is good for him, and if an adversity reaches him, he is patient which is good for him.” [Muslim]

And of course, with every experience, there are only lessons to learn. As each somewhat hopeless and stressful situation makes it’s way into one’s life, one cannot help but to think of every possible outcome that may be, just as I was as I burst through the parking lot that evening, marching ahead, because I knew at that moment, nothing else mattered.

If only I had paid more attention, I was berating myself. Maybe I might have known. If only I had been more careful… More considerate.

It’s funny how after everything is done and the crap train is on full steam ahead, we find ourselves doing reflection.  The futile thoughts of ‘what ifs’ and ‘if onlys’ were consuming my mind for the entire duration of the one-hour trip from the place I had been fishing at. I couldn’t help but think that I should have just been here, instead of anywhere else. I should have just dealt with my issues at home instead of going AWOL on Farah and everyone else too.

As I entered, I ignored that prickly feeling at the back of my neck, as if someone was not just watching me, but literally staring me down. I knew I would get harrassed mercilessly for not being here. I also knew that my in-laws would have a field day picking on how ‘early’ I had been there for my wife and child, when this was probably the time Farah needed me the most.

I swallowed, licking my lips roughly and getting ready to defend myself if needed. For once in my life, my eyes were completely averted, not wanting to meet anybody’s penetrating gaze. I almost wanted to kick myself because when it came to the times I needed to look down, any chic would completely throw me off. Not getting myself into any kind of argument was a sure reason to control myself this time.

I hastily entered the ward she was at, immediately relieved to see her sitting on the bed. Thankfully, she was alone and not with the masses that usually accompanied a pregnant woman who was probably in very early labour.

I tapped softly at the door, trying to straighten up the ‘going-fishing’ attire I wearing before she saw me.

I knew why I was doing it now. The truth of how little I had put into this marriage was haunting me. I wanted her to always see the best in me, but I usually never made an effort to show it. I wanted to always be her first preference, but I seldom put her before everything else.

Today, I was going to change that. Today, I was going to make my family my priority. Today I would start being better.

“Love,” I said softly, walking slowly toward the ward bed. I wasn’t sure when was the last time I had addressed her so affectionately. It was like we were at constant war with each other for the past two weeks, living in the same house.

She looked liked she was sleeping, but her eyes fluttered open as I went forward. I reached out my hand to touch her, and she turned her face slightly, almost as if she didn’t want me to.

“I’m sorry I’m late,” I said, immediately cutting to the chase.

She didn’t reply. Just looked at me, almost as if she wasn’t even seeing me. As if she was focussed somewhere beyond me.

“Farah,” I said softly, pulling the chair close to the bed and sitting next to her.

She turned her head to look at me, but she still had that blank look on her face. She was either seriously drugged up, or something was very wrong. I had to ask.

“Is everything… Okay?” I finally said, almost choking on my own words.

I ignored the nagging feeling, awaiting those three words.

It’s all okay. It needed to hear it. I needed to know what was happening.

But sometimes, when you want something really badly, the mere hint of positivity can bring on the most immense relief. A trace of a smile appeared on Farah’s face, but before I could even take the bait and smooth everything over, two nurses came in, looking from me to Farah, slightly hesitating before they spoke.

“It’s okay, I’m the-” I started.

“He’s the father,” Farah said, her expression still fairly unreadable. “My husband.”

The magnanimity of it just suddenly hit me.

Zee was going to have to grow up. All of a sudden. I wasn’t even sure how I had got here. I was barely even out of my teens, but from that drunk guy at the club, I had suddenly evolved into some kind of bearded hopeful, and now, I was expected to just ‘be’ a responsible father.

But life was such, that regardless of whether you are ready or not, if you have the audacity to do the crap that put you in a situation, you needed to man up enough to deal with it.

I instantly put on my iron-man mode, prepared for anything. Excitement was building up, and the anticipation was getting more intense. Maybe it was a moment, but I was all psyched up for the big showdown that involved my baby coming into this world, before my entire universe came crashing down with the next words.

From the serenity I had just felt moments before, their next words were the bomb that shook my world.

We’re just taking her for the final scan before she… I  mean, you guys, make a decision.”

I processed. Once. Twice.

Was I missing something?

A decision? What was going on?

“Can you just give us a few minutes?” I told them quickly, wanting to talk to my wife alone. She was avoiding eye contact, and I immediately knew.

It’s funny how sometimes, you see all the signs, but you still refuse to accept what’s right in front of your eyes. I could see that she was being strong, but I didn’t know why. I could see she was trying to look normal, but I still denied the obvious.

That look on her face was dreadfully familiar. Beyond the tiny smile that lingered, her eyes told an entirely different story. Something was definitely wrong.

“It’s not okay.”

That was all it took.

The next few moments were like a whirlwind in my boggled mind. Her words knocked me like a ton of bricks.

I blinked, as if I had been slapped.

I didn’t even think about Farah, as she explained to me what was going on. I had no consideration for anyone else, as I tried to regather my scattered thoughts.

I walked out blindly, hearing a doctor talking near me, and I immediately knew it was my baby they were discussing. It was like a punch in my stomach.

There was no way of knowing… It was something that they could only see at this point in the pregnancy.

It had no brain. The baby’s brain was just fluid. A birth defect that could make him or her completely brain-dead. Like a vegetable, basically. Just a limp vegetable.

A streak of possessiveness shot through me, determined to do everything to make this all okay.

I spun around, and almost as if I was in a trance, walked back to the waiting area. Images were flashing to my mind, as I let it all sink in. Was this all my fault? Was this calamity something I had brought on with my own doings?

Blaring music. ‘The Zee’ in the club. Women in my face. Booze. Drugs.

Partying like there was no tomorrow. Giving it all up like there was no care in the world.

Sin upon sin.

And now, even though I knew exactly how far I was going at the time, I felt like I was literally air-lifted, and dropped into this situation, not even with an inkling of know-how as to what I needed to do to get out. It was just beyond bogus.

I took a seat at the first chair I could see, hanging my head in my hands, as if I was ready for a complete meltdown.

I didn’t think. I didn’t think about consequences. I just did as I felt, solely for temporary satisfaction.

I felt like a complete fool. The torrent of emotion was on it’s way out, and from the pitied looks I was getting, I just knew that there was no happy ending here.

I just couldn’t help but feel like the whole thing was my fault.

Was this the punishment I had to suffer, because I had messed around? Was it the masses of drugs I was taking when I was with Farah? Where was the way out here?

“It’s gonna be okay.”

The voice accompanied a firm hand on my shoulder, but of course, I didn’t have to look up to see who it was. I looked down, still shaking my head in disbelief.

How was it that when he needed me, I couldn’t step up, but he always made sure that he did? Though I never thought twice about anyone but myself, he made sure that he was here for me.

Without a single moments hesitation, I turned, pulling onto my brother like a little kid.

I felt like the idiot brother who messed up once again, now being rescued for what I had got caught up in. His hands gripped me assuringly, and I couldn’t help but believe what he had just said. I couldn’t help but believe that it was going to be okay.

And then, because my brother was just so damn brilliant, he murmured what I knew I would never, for the life of me, ever forget. Words I would cling onto for the rest of my existance.

“﴿وَمَن يَتَّقِ اللَّهَ يَجْعَل لَّهُ مَخْرَجاًوَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لاَ يَحْتَسِبُ﴾”

And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out. And He will provide him from where he never could imagine. (Surah At-Talaq: 2/3)

 And the verse goes on to say:

“And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him. Indeed, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Allah has already set for everything a [decreed] extent.”

It was just… Awesome. The answer I was just searching for. The way out I was determined to find.

Dammit, my brother was the bomb.

He was my guide to refuge, and my means to change my life. Only through Allah’s mercy, He had brought me to this point, and Waseem was the main instrument to make sure that I stayed there. Nagging the heck out of me was the worst thing for me at the time, but his constant patronising made me better. It kept me clean. And now, again it put me back on track.

“You’ve come so far,” he said, grinning like a stud. “You can’t melt down now, boss. You’re a soldier.”

I wasn’t sure about that, but I knew that I was stronger now than I had ever been. And it was true that Allah had now brought me to a point in my life where I was much more focussed than I ever was. With time, I had built up the courage and ability to not revert to where I had come from, with every small obstacle.

Allah had only brought me to this trying place at this point, because He knew that I would know exactly how to handle this, and place my trust in Him alone. He alone will provide the way out. He will take care of it all.

He will provide the way out.

I blinked back my emotions, nodding at Waseem, feeling like I was able to conquer the world again.

Bring it on, boss, I thought to myself, getting up, and feeling like the protagonist in the series of ‘My Life’, once again.

I had ‘Mafia Mode’ switched right back on.

“Be a man,” Waseem said patronisingly, bursting my super-hero bubble.

It was amazing how he knew exactly what I needed to hear. He knew what a coward I always was.

“Go and be with your wife.”

Dear readers, I am so sorry for going partly AWOL. An extra long post to make up. 

Please don’t forget our Super Sunnahs!

#Revive theSunnahofSpeakingGood




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