#87• Leeya. Part 24

Its been 5 years since Fayaaz found out about my affair. We never ever speak to each other and pretend that the other isn’t even here. I don’t understand why he couldn’t forgive me. Before we got married when I tried to tell him about it he said he doesn’t want to know about my past he wants my present and my future, what’s changed?

It was such a long time ago, I was a young naive 16 year old who used to work part time in a takeaway, the owner showed interest in me, pretending to care about me. It was something really rare in my life. I only had my granny who was always extremely depressed having lost her husband and my parents in a space of just 2 years. His interest in me quickly deepened and I soon believed his charming words which had no real meaning. We would leave the takeaway to the others to manage while we went out. He had a beach house we could quietly escape to. I knew well that he had a loving caring wife and kids sightly younger than me, but it never really bothered me. I thought one day he would willingly leave them for me.

They say love is blind but your neighbors are not.  Our neighbors soon noticed him dropping me on the corner of my home street and they saw him around when he clearly said he had business in another town. His wife came to know and she threatened to leave him with their kids. He quickly discarded of me leaving me with all the taunting and bad naming from everyone. My granny passed away soon after that and I took that as an opportunity to leave, forget that part of my life and never look back.

Everytime I tried to speak to Fayaaz to explain things to him he just waved his hand saying he doesn’t want to hear anything, he’s tired of my lies. He was just so cold and blocked off to everything I had to say or do. I tried and tried but when I saw no forgiveness in him I completely gave up.

We pretended to be this happy couple in front of his parents and our friends. He still comes with me to every business trip. He’ll randomly hold me when his parents are around and speak to me with kind loving words. But the moment we alone its like he doesn’t know me or never loved me.

I wonder if he’d ever tell his parents,  maybe he doesn’t want to cause he knows they’ll tell us to work through it and maybe he doesn’t want to. 5 years is a long time to stay away from each other over a mistake that you’ve made before you understood things. After so long of resenting him I realized I still love him more than words could explain and I will love him more everyday.. I just wish he could give us another chance..

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#86• Post #01• till #85•

I’ve decided to repost everything from the start in this one post. For those who would like to reread everything or for the new readers who can’t find the beginning.

ENJOY ♡

In the name of God, the most merciful, the great..

#01• Raeesa. Part 1

I was forced to marry him, no matter how much I pleaded with my parents they wouldn’t hear me out. I guess that was because they didn’t know..
My wedding day, “The Most Happiest Day Of My Life” my friends were dressing me and my make up artist doing her thing.
My dad walked in and asked them to leave the room, they looked at me confused. I shrugged my shoulders shaking my head.
My dad turned to face me and said
“I swear if you say no today” …..

inspiration

Let your dreams be bigger than your fears and your actions louder than your words.
Live by choice, not by chance.
Make changes, not excuses.
Be motivated, not manipulated.
Work to excel, not compete.
Choose to listen to your inner voice, not the jumbled opinions of everyone else.
It’s your road, and yours alone.
Others may walk it with you,
but no one can walk it for you.!

#02• Raeesa. Part 2

“Yes dad off course, you and mum would be disgraced because of me”
“No darling its not that” He said putting his hand on my head.

I turned away closing my eyes, I couldn’t bear to look at his face.
I opened my eyes only when I heard the chatter of my friends.

Its not that the guy I’m marrying is ugly, he’s gorgeous actually.
Tall, golden brown hair, neat beard, hazel eyes that sparkle when he sees me and rich. And he’s a Hafiz. Basically everything a girl could ever want.
Its just.. ..

“Earth to Raeesa”. my friend Aisha said waving her hands in front of me.

Me: Ah sorry

Aisha: I asked which stiletto did you decide on wearing?

Me: I haven’t, please help.

Sabeeha: (my other friend) I think the silver with swarovski crystals over the heel.

Me: Yeah sure perfect.

Aisha: Right, now look at yourself, (her eyes full of excitement)

#03• Raeesa. Part 3

I looked into the full length mirror.

The person looking back at me wasn’t the person I remember.
Her dress had a corset and then went wide into layers. Her hair looked beautiful on her head set in the perfect roses. A sparkling tiara and a long white veil. Her lips red and make up perfectly in place.

She was beautiful.. I said: “That’s not me!”

My grandmother: “You look beautiful my darling”

She was the only one that knew everything that happened, I turned to her and hugged her tightly.

Granny: “Don’t worry it will be okay doll”

Aisha: “No crying now, your make up will get messed”

My mum came into the room and asked: “Are you ready?”
Then she took a step back, hugged me and shrieked: “Oh My God Raeesa, you look like a princess!!”

Me: “Be careful mum, my dress”

I pulled away from her. I had nothing but hate for her and dad at the moment. Then my uncle Naeem and my brother Muhammed came into the room.
My uncle spoke to me about the virtues of getting married and my sweet brother just winked and wished me luck. My uncle asked me the question that changes everything..

Uncle Naeem: Raeesa, do you accept Riyaad as your husband with the Mahr-e-Fatimi .. .. ..

#04• Riyaad. Part 1

My Nikaah day, the day I’ve been waiting for, for 6 months.

I can still remember the day I went to see Raeesa.
I went to see few other girls before but none were like her.
She was just different and I knew she’d make the perfect mother to my children one day inshaAllah.
She’s beautiful and pious. Everything I was looking for.
But she has a certain sadness in her eyes.
I wonder why..

So back to my wedding day, I couldn’t wait to make her my wife.
I want a life with her whereby my happiest moments are being embraced by a simple drive that has us screaming in laughter, a walk through a public area that has us behave as best friends, that the passion and lust between us to be so extreme and the understanding of her mind and its complex avenues intrigues to an extent where every sentence teaches me something new about her then surely, it is exactly what I want. I want to awaken for the prayer before the rising sun and have her love my recitation of the Word of my Creator. I want to be her strength in every facet of emotional and physical need. I want to be the completion of her Imaan. Most of all, I want to possess the qualities she requires, the passion that she desires, the attention she deserves and the patience, understanding and answers that she inquires..

My mum walked into the room crying and she said:
Riyaad her answer is…

#05• Raeesa. Part 4

I said Yes…

After that a whole lot of people hugged me and congratulated me. As they listened to my Nikaah being performed over the receiver.

I excused myself saying I need the bathroom, the reception was going to be after Zohr.

I went to my room and sat on my musallah. I lifted my hands and prayed to my Creator.

Oh Allah, You have promised that You will always be there for Your servant when he/she calls to You. I am calling to You on the day that I complete half my Deen. Please bless me in my decision, make Riyaad my best friend, help him understand me and make me everything that he’s looked for in a wife and a mother to his children one day. Help me understand him and bring us closer to You. Help us withstand all that comes our way.
Ameen.

After I read my zohr salaah. My mother called me saying that Riyaad was here to see me so that we could spend a little time together before the reception.

#06• Raeesa. Part 5

Riyaad walked into the room smiling broadly, I wished I was as happy as him.
He greeted me and hugged me.
At that moment I knew he was the one who would take care of me and love me like no one else could..
He smiled and waited for me to sit.

Riyaad: “How are you?”
Me: “Alhamdulillah and you?”
Riyaad: “Shukr”

Silence…

Riyaad: “You look lovely”
Me: “Uhm jazakallah”

Saved.. My friends came into the room and told me that people were waiting to see me.

Riyaad: “We’ll speak later,, carry on.”

As I walked out of the room he walked behind me and lifted my trail making it easier for me to walk..

Dad had hired a limo for me, my friends and my brother Muhammed to go in.

As we dove to where the reception was going to be, I closed my eyes and wished a truck would crash into my side of the limo.. But then too wishes don’t come true.
The driver parked the limo and I looked around, there had to be around 300 cars.. I could just imagine how many people were going to be inside..

#07• Raeesa. Part 6

Riyaad came to the limo and opened the door. He held out his hand to me and we walked into the hall together.

The tables were reserved seating, the decor was pink and white, and millions of flowers everywhere.

Walking down the aisle with Riyaad I could feel everyone’s eyes on me and hear the whisper of their comments. Riyaad squeezed my hand,

Me: “Can we leave?”

Riyaad: “We could, but your dad would freak”

I smiled, as we sat down in front, our table had a huge bouquet of pink and white flowers.

I never wanted such a huge wedding but my parents insisted saying people will talk. They chose the man I should marry and the type of wedding I should have.
Hours went by slowly, people came to congratulate me. I had to smile for all the pictures they wanted to take, and pose with them.

Finally Aisha and Sabeeha came and said:
“Come, your flight is at 7”

Riyaad kissed me on my cheek and whispered:
“I’ll see you a little later”

I was going to go to Aisha’s house, change and then Riyaad and I would take a flight to Port Elizabeth, where my new home is..

As we drove back to Aisha’s house. I put my head on her shoulder and let the tears flow.

Aisha: “Oh My God! Raeesa why are you crying”

Me: “I don’t want to be married”

Sabeeha: “Then why did you say yes?”

Me: “My Istikhara was good, and partly because my dad threatened me”

Aisha: “So that’s why he wanted us to go out of the room”

Sabeeha: “What are you going to do now?”

#08• Raeesa. Part 7

Me: “I don’t know, I’m worried about Riyaad. What if I make his life horrible, he’s so excited”.

Aisha wiped my tears and said:
“Raeesa you did the right thing, he’s a nice person and he’ll give you all the love you deserve and didn’t get. Don’t worry, take every day as it comes and Allah will guide through everything.”

Me: “Thank you Aisha”

Aisha and Sabeeha hugged me, as we reached the house.
My granny opened the door.

Me: “You here already”

Nani: “Yeah, you know how your mother drives”

I walked upstairs into Aisha’s room. My baby blue evening gown was laid out for me. Aisha and Sabeeha re-did my hair and make-up. I wore silver pumps comfortable for the flight.

Mum walked into the room and said: “Riyaad is here”

Me: “Thanks I was just going down”

They walked with me downstairs where Riyaad stood waiting. He smiled when he saw me and held out his hand.
I turned to my nani and hugged her.

Nani: “Doll don’t worry, it will be alright”

Me: “I don’t want to go”

She pulled away and wiped my tears.

Nani: “Look what you’ve done to your make-up”

I turned to Riyaad, he had a worried frown. I faked a smile, then took his hand and we walked out..
Towards my new life, towards my life with Riyaad and towards the part of life I feared most..

#09• Riyaad. part 2

Finally I was alone with Raeesa, the wedding went on for hours.
People took pictures and I had to keep smiling, I’m against the whole pictures thing, but Raeesa seemed fine about it.

I couldn’t wait to reach home, and show her the house I designed.
I just hope she likes it,

In the car on the way to the airport, Raeesa fell asleep almost immediately. She looked beautiful I held her hand and she stirred in her sleep. Gosh I’m married to this beauty. Alhamdulillah..

My thoughts went back to my life with my parents, they were always happy. I want my marriage to be like that.
I was an only kid, my mother couldn’t have kids after me. They were strict to a certain extent but my mum taught me my limits, and I’m grateful for that. I always tried to stay away from the wrong, maybe that’s why Allah blessed me with such a wonderful wife.

Raeesa woke up,

Me: “Assalamu alaykum”

Raeesa: “Wa alaykumus salaam”

Me: “Slept well?”

Raeesa: “Yeah”

Me: “Do you want anything to eat?”

Raeesa: “No jazakallah”

We reached O.R Tambo international. I wheeled our bags into the airport and we checked in.

#10• Raeesa. Part 8

As we sat in the plane, Riyaad put his arm around my shoulder.

Riyaad: “I hate planes”

Me (lying): “I love them

Riyaad: “Raeesa are you scared?”

Me: “Gosh no”

Riyaad: “No, I mean of being married”

Me: “We already married, there’s no going back”

Riyaad: “Why are you being sarcastic?”

I just lowered my head and the plane took off.

Riyaad whispered: “Ouch”

That’s when I realized I was gripping his hand and left nail marks. I quickly tried to pull my hand away but he held on, and only left when the plane was flying straight.

I closed my eyes and put my head against the window, as I fell asleep I felt him take my hand again.

A little while later I woke up to find Riyaad sleeping on my shoulder, wanting to push him away I looked at his sleeping face and listened to his slow breathing, he looked so perfect and peaceful so I left him.
It wouldn’t kill me to let my “husband” sleep on my shoulder…

As the plane touched down, Riyaad woke up.

Riyaad: “Oh no”

Me: “What?”

Riyaad: “We landing”

Me: “Oh”

Riyaad: “Raeesa I’m not a stranger, you can talk to me”

Me: “I know that”

Riyaad: “Then, what’s wrong?”

Me: “I guess I’m just nervous”

Riyaad: “I am also, we in this together”

We got off the plane, and Riyaad’s driver picked us up to take us home…

#11• Raeesa. Part 9

As the limo drew closer to our house, I looked out of the window. The scenery was green and lush, the ocean peeping out between the trees.

Riyaad: “Here we are”

The limo slowed down and then parked.. Green grass, lush red and white roses filled the garden, stairs rose up at the end leading to an absolutely beautiful house or should I rather say palace.

The driver opened the door for us and as I stepped out I could just stare. Riyaad came to stand next to me and put his arm around my waist.

Riyaad: “Do you like it?”

Me smiling: “Yes, I do”

We walked together towards the house, before we reached the last step, a lady wearing a white apron opened the door and bowed slightly I felt like a queen.

“Good evening” She said.

Riyaad: “Raeesa this is Eleanor”

Me: “Hi”

Eleanor: “Finally I get to see you”

I smiled and we walked into the house, the floor was marbled and in front of us were french windows showing off the beach.

Riyaad: “Raeesa?”

Me: “Uhm yeah?”

Riyaad: “Come I wanna show you the rest of the house”

He walked into a lounge it was neon green and ivory with a thick green carpet and ivory couches, and more french windows.

Riyaad showed me 2 other rooms, a salaah room and a family room.
Then we went into a huge dining room, it had light wooden floors and a huge table which could seat about 15 people.
The kitchen had oak colour cupboard and granite tops with silver accessories.
Riyaad lead me up the stairs which had 5 bedrooms all en-suites each a different colour. (Who ever is going stay in all of them??)

We went up more stairs, there was red and white couches and a thick black carpet as we walked over, my feet sunk in.

Me: “What’s here?”

Riyaad: “Our room”

Me: “Where?”

He laughed and pointed to the wall, I walked over and noticed a small door handle and pulled open the door that was barely visible, a cool breeze blew.

Riyaad: “Close your eyes”

I closed my eyes and he walked behind me with his hands gently on my waist leading me into the room.

Riyaad: “Ta Da”

I opened my eyes. In front of me was a huge bed, sunset colour duvet, huge french windows showing the beach, light white curtains flapping in the wind, a sliding door leading to a balcony and stairs going straight onto the beach. A scene too hard to describe.

I whispered: “OhMyGosh”

Riyaad smiling: “Do you like it?”

Me: “I love it!”

He took me into his arms and held me tight.

Riyaad: “Thank you”

Me: “For?”

Riyaad: “Marrying me”

As I turned away, he frowned.

Me: “Can I change out of this dress?”

Riyaad: “Sure, go on”

Me: “Wardrobe?”

He walked to the wall and placed his hand on it, there were a few beebs and a door became visible, he opened the door and stepped aside.
I walked into the wardrobe, it was filled with clothes and shoes which weren’t even mine,

Riyaad: “They all for you, I picked it out, I hope you like them”

This man just amazes me..

• PS okay you can stop picturing it :p .. Hope u enjoyed this post •

#12• Raeesa. Part 10

The day was awesome..

Riyaad took me for a walk on the beach and Eleanor cooked supper for us. It was a dream only I knew everything was real.
The feel of the sand between my toes, the salty air and Riyaad’s fingers that gently clasped my hand.
He looked very happy and everytime I commented on anything his face gleamed with joy.

As I lay in bed I thought about the life I had left behind, living with my parents wasn’t easy and Muhammed was studying aalim so he was hardly at home.
My mother was always with friends and going out was more important than spending time with us.
Dad was a mystery, some days he loved and protected me and some days he just didn’t care about me or Muhammed.
Moe was my strength, he was there for me whenever I needed him, he placed me before anyone else.
I always had to do what my parents wanted or I was ungrateful for everything they did for me and I was cursed. They were always arguing and kept saying they were only together for Moe’s and my sake.

I heard Riyaad in the bathroom brushing his teeth, when he came out he was wearing a black shorts and a black vest.

He came into the bed and gently pulled me towards him,

Riyaad whispered: “Raeesa”

Me: “Riyaad, I’m not ready”

Riyaad: “No problem, we’ll go slow”

He kissed me on my neck, I shivered.

Riyaad: “Are you cold?”

Me: “No I’m fine, just tired”

Riyaad: “Okay go to sleep, we’ll talk tomorrow”

I turned around facing the wall and he wrapped his arms around me holding me tight. I listened as his breathing grow slower and slower, the waving crashing against the shore, this is my life now.

#13• Aisha. Part 1

It was a month since Raeesa’s wedding..

I knew Raeesa since we were 5. She was the shy type waiting for others to talk to her. We became friends and were close since then, we went through high school and campus. We even studied fashion designing together.

I come from a middle-class family with 3 brothers and me being the only sister. I always wished for a life like Raeesa until I heard her story..

As I finished my zohr salaah my cell rang, it was Raeesa.

Me: “Hey, how are you?”

Raeesa: “Shukr, you?”

Me: “I’m good”

Raeesa: “Do you wanna get married?”

Me laughing: “Why not?”

Raeesa: “My brother Muhammed wants to come see you”

Me: “Wait, what!”

Raeesa: “Yeah he asked me to ask you before my mum phones”

Me: “What you think?”

Raeesa: “I think you should go ahead but its up to you, Muhammed is a lovely person”

Me: “Okay tell your mum to phone”

Raeesa: “You’ll be my sister-in-law”

Me: “Yeah yeah, like you didn’t see enough of me”

Raeesa: “I have to go, Riyaad is here and we going out for lunch”

Me: “Hmm enjoy, take care assalamu alaykum”

Raeesa: “Wa alaykumus salaam”

Muhammed had just finished his Aalim, he became a hafiz when he was 13 and he did engineering. He’s also very handsome.

That same night Aunty Shakira (Raeesa’s mum) phoned and mum said they can come this weekend. After she finished on the phone I asked her how could she make it so soon.

Mum: “We not doing anything this weekend so I thought they can come”

Me: “But mum I’m not ready!”

Mum: “You don’t need to be ready, they only coming to see you, you not getting married, relax”

Expect mum to say that, she just didn’t understand or maybe I did need to just relax.

#14• Aisha. Part 2

Saturday. The day Muhammed is coming to see me.

That afternoon I went for a facial and made sure I didn’t have a single hair on my face. I was so nervous. I had all my abayas laid out on the bed and just couldn’t decide which one to wear. I picked out one the day before but today it somehow didn’t look nice on me. I phoned Sabeeha to come over and help me but she didn’t arrive yet.

After 2 hours of deciding and debating with Sabeeha I decided on a plain but elegant Sharqiaa abaya, a black scarf and silver pumps.
Mum had the samoosas ready to be fried after maghrib and the table set.

As I finished my Esha salaah the doorbell rang and my butterflies flew faster. Mum served the tea and Aunty Shakira asked me a few things, I was never shy of her but today I stumbled over my words and dropped my spoon as I was eating dessert. My eldest brother Yusuf called me and asked if I was ready to speak to Muhammed.

I sat waiting in the lounge, as Muhammed walked into the lounge he greeted me. Muhammed, the boy we used to play with as kids and when I decided to go into niqaab he congratulated me and we stopped talking. Then he left to do Aalim. Now he was here thinking of marrying me.

Muhammed: “How are you?”

Me: “Alhamdulillah u?”

Muhammed: “Alhamdulillah, so tell me what are your likes and dislikes”

Hmm he got straight to the point. We spoke for about 10-15 minutes. He asked me about my goals in life and what I expect from a husband. I noticed that each time he smiled he had a dimple slightly hidden behind his beard. Then he asked if I have any more questions so I said no, he got up and greeted me then left.

I went back into the dinning room and spoke to Aunty Shakira for a little while.
After they left mum and I started clearing up and the doorbell rang, it was them again. I thought maybe they forgot something but Aunty Shakira said they wanna put in a proposal and I should make Istikhara and give them an answer. Muhammed likes me!

Oh Allah! I seek Your guidance by virtue of Your knowledge, and I seek ability by virtue of Your power, and I ask You of Your great bounty. You have power; I have none. And You know; I know not. You are the Knower of hidden things.
Oh Allah! If in Your knowledge, (this matter*) is good for my religion, my livelihood and my affairs, immediate and in the future, then ordain it for me, make it easy for me, and bless it for me. And if in Your knowledge, (this matter*) is bad for my religion, my livelihood and my affairs, immediate and in the future, then turn it away from me, and turn me away from it. And ordain for me the good wherever it may be, and make me content with it. ?

#15• Riyaad. Part 3

I’m married for 3 months.

Raeesa doesn’t allow me to touch her or kiss her more than a peak on her cheek. Whenever she wakes up and I’m holding her she quickly goes to the bathroom.

Once she let me kiss her but as soon as I placed my hands over her body she jumped and went into the bathroom, I heard her crying and when I knocked she said she’s fine. I just stopped trying.

She’s a lovely wife. She worries about my food and takes out my clothes for work. She messages me during my time at work and she waits for me by the door when I return. I don’t understand her, I asked her a few times she just shrugged and says I’m sorry but does the same thing, I mean we are married..

Today at work, my assistant Stacey put her hand on mine as I sat at my desk.

Stacey: “What’s wrong?”

Me: “Nothing, why?”

Stacey: “This past 2 months you not yourself and you daydream a lot”

Me: “No I’m fine”

It meant so much that someone could notice I was not okay, and before I could think clearly her lips were on mine, she tasted of cherry and coffee. It lasted for a minute and then I came to my senses and pushed her away. I got up and walked into the bathroom. I banged my head against the wall and my mind shouted to myself, what did you do Riyaad, you are married! She’s not a muslim, what will Raeesa think if she saw that.

I walked out of the bathroom and told my secretary to take messages. I drove straight to the musjid and cried.
Oh Allah what have I done.

#16• Raeesa. Part 11

I knew it was my own fault but still how could he..

Riyaad came home a little later than usual and I could see something was bothering him, I served him supper and we ate together in one plate like always, he didn’t eat much.

Later that night as I was changing he called me.

Riyaad: “Raeesa I need to talk to you”

Me: “Okay give me a few minutes”

I finish change and went to sit next to him on the bed, he got off the bed and sat on the floor by my feet and took my hands in his.

Riyaad: “I want to know if you want to go for a holiday to your parents?”

Me: “Actually I was going to tell you that Aisha wants me to go there if its okay with you”

Riyaad: “Sure, and I think we need that little time away”

Me: “I’ll go for a week if that’s okay?”

Riyaad: “Yeah sure, and Raeesa there’s something else”

Me: “Yeah?”

Riyaad: “I’m really sorry”

He told me what had happened at work and I felt my heart sink, I could feel the tears slowly coming. I pulled my hands out of his and went into the lounge. After alittle while he came in the lounge.

Riyaad: “Raeesa I didn’t mean to do it, it just happened and I’m really sorry”

Me: “I don’t think its me that you should say sorry to”

Riyaad: “I made taubah”

Me: “Riyaad, would you do it again?”

Riyaad: “Never”

Me: “I’m sorry, its really my fault”

I started crying and Riyaad came and took me in his arms, he held me really tight, for the first time in my entire life, I felt so safe and loved.

Later that night I packed a bag and kept it ready. I was going to go to Aisha for a week and help her with her wedding preparations. Riyaad booked me a flight and my brother was going to pick me up in joburg.

The next morning Riyaad didn’t go to work and took me to the airport, we had spur for breakfast and then I had to board my flight. Riyaad hugged me and kissed my forehead,

Riyaad: “I’m going to miss you”

Me: “Me too”

Riyaad: “Really?”

Me: “Yeah”

He hugged me again and we greeted and I left.

#17• Aisha.. Part 3

Wedding house. It was crazy. People were coming and the amount of tea my mum was making was unreal.

Raeesa had came the day before and there were exactly 4 days, 6 hours and 23 minutes for my nikaah, yes I’m counting.
I knew something was wrong when I first saw Raeesa but we didn’t get time alone for me to ask her.

Today I had a laser appointment and a one last make up trail before the wedding. As soon as we got back I pulled Raeesa into the room and told my mum to tell everyone that I didn’t get back as yet. Hmm some peace.

I pulled out my box of goodies from under my bed and Raeesa and I sat on the bed like old times and enjoyed.

Raeesa: “Hhmm I love this”

Me: “Yeah I miss it”

Raeesa: “What’s happening with Sabeeha?”

Me: “She isn’t well, said she’ll come tomorrow or thursday”

Raeesa: “Oh, I can’t wait to see her also, its like 3 months already”

Me: “Yeah, and what’s happening with you?”

Raeesa: “Nothing, why?”

Me: “Don’t lie, I can see”

She told me what had happened and how she doesn’t let Riyaad touch her. I wanted to scream at her but I knew why so I hugged her.

Me: “Why don’t you just tell him? Riyaad is a lovely person he’ll understand”

Raeesa: “What if he doesn’t?”

Me: “You didn’t try, how would you know?”

There was a knock on the door, it was my mum saying that there were too many visitors and I have to greet them.

#18• Raeesa. Part 12

The wedding was wonderful.

Aisha looked like a Disney princess with a white ball gown, her hair fully covered with a white scarf and she had a tiny tiara. Muhammed was overjoyed he couldn’t stop looking at her.

Riyaad surprised me and flew down for the wedding, he looked gorgeous in a white kurta, black waist coat and a white turban. I didn’t see him dress like that before.
After the wedding we went to my parent’s house, the atmosphere didn’t change, it was still so cold. My father went straight into his room and mum was busy on her S5.

Riyaad sensed how awkward it was so he asked if I wanted to stay at my parents or at his. I told him I’d like to spend time with his parents.
We spent the night there and Riyaad booked a flight for the next morning. His mum was wonderful she made me laugh and his dad called me angel.
They taught me a game of cards, and I beat Riyaad a few times or maybe he let me beat him.
I made popcorn and Uncle Zubair (Riyaad’s dad) showed me how he eats popcorn with smarties. It was a wonderful night.

At 2am we decided to sleep, Riyaad and I went to his room, he showed me his trophy’s and medals he got through his years at school. Then he took me into his arms and kissed my forehead.

Riyaad: “I missed you”

Me: “I did also”

Riyaad: “Hmm I believe you, saw your face when you saw me walk in”

Me: “So if you didn’t, you wouldn’t believe me?”

Riyaad: “The week at Aisha was good for you, you said more than 3 words”

I laughed and he hugged me tightly.

Riyaad: “Darling, you forgave me?”

Me: “There wasn’t anything to forgive”

Riyaad: “I love you”

I was quiet, it was the first time he said it to me.

Riyaad: “Don’t worry, when you ready”

Me: “I love you too”

#19• Raeesa. Part 13

We reached home the next day, as we walked up the stairs towards the house Riyaad lifted me into his arms and carried me in. Then he gently put me down.

Riyaad: “I have a surprise for you”

Me: “What?”

Riyaad: “Wait here”

I waited and a few minutes later he came back with the cutest white kitten. It had blue eyes and was extremely fluffy.

Riyaad: “Here”

Me: “Wow can I hold it?”

Riyaad gave it to me and I held it as it purred. I was in love.

Riyaad: “You like her?”

Me: “Yes I do, but how did you know I wasn’t scared of cats?”

Riyaad: “Well I told Muhammed I want to get for you something, and he said you always wanted a kitten.

We decided to name her Kiara, she ran up and down the stairs and waited for me behind the door then jumped for my toes, she was a bundle of joy.
At night she slept in a cat cushion that Riyaad bought for her, in the corner of our room.

Later that night I hugged Riyaad.

Riyaad: “Hmm so that’s what it takes to get a hug from you”

Me: “What action did I do that Allah was so pleased with that He granted me you?”

Riyaad: “I could ask you the same thing”

Me: “I don’t have an answer, we’ll have to ask Him in Jannah”

Riyaad: “You’ll want me in Jannah also?”

Me: “I quote from a Mujaahid’s letter to his wife, “None was worthy to stand next to me in this life, so why is it I should desire another in the next?”

Riyaad: “Wow, I’m speechless Raeesa”

Me: “Riyaad I need to tell you something, I don’t know how you going to take it and you need to know…. …. ….

•A Letter From A Mujaahid To His Wife•

Dedicated to my Princess

You never complained when you knew we would have nothing.
You were content on having what little you needed.

Where others would have left or moaned you never once let out a sigh.
You understood what was written was what we would eat.

I never once complained about what was put in front of me
as I knew it was your hands that brought it to me.

When I had nothing I had you.
We smiled as we saw the destruction around us
knowing that these people were not true.

You never felt sympathy towards the enemy.
You put your trust in your Rubb
and in turn you followed me.
Never did I have to wonder about you
as my secrets, my honour and my Deen
were safe with you.

We both know what hardships you faced just by being with me,
but not a word did you speak.
You were strong and in turn you made me strong.

Like a vanguard for this Ummah you concealed yourself.
Where others would rush to please their desires,
you were the essence of Taqwa.

Life was easy with you it came so naturally.
You were the extension of me and
would never need to finish my words as who knew me better than you?
You knew your place, which was by my side.

It’s the little things that make the person
and you would have easily have kept me going for a lifetime.

The way you would look at me with fire in your eyes
showed me that I was the only one for you.
You stole my heart and hid it away.
I loved your jealousy.
I loved to tease you with the thought of others
just so I could know how dear I was to you.

What chance did shaytan have
when you would ensure that fajr was the easiest of the salahs.
I loved that you would forsake me in an instant to fast a voluntary fast.
I loved that the Haq was dearer to you than my life and those of our jewels

Watching you makes me laugh
as I wonder if my heart will ever want another
as I watch you feed my child,
as you lift her out of the bath,
as you wipe her little nose and the face she pulls.

You will never find a diamond in the hands of the poor
in the same way our diamond deserves to be carried in your hands.
We could have it all my love
but who sells Paradise for an hour of passing pleasure?
Not us.
I chose you Umm ***** as I know our fruits are safe with you.
Never would I have to worry about where the loyalties of my babies are.

They will love what we love they will love Allah Most Glorified Most High,
they will Love the Prophets and the best of Companions,
They will love those who they have never met but will long to meet.
They will love those better then us.
They will live to honour one statement.
La illaha illallah Muhammadur RasoolAllah
Others will fall under the weight of it but not them.
Their hearts will beat it, their words testify to it and their hands carry it.

Dont think I left you.
Dont think that in this world anything is dearer to me
then the minute that I walk home
knowing what waits for me behind closed doors.

I went to find a better place for us. I went to fulfil the best of deals.
I saw it written that if you give your life then eternity will be ours.

I saw it written somewhere that this was all a test
and I have no doubt that one who promises us
and whose word is truth must love me very much
as he gave me you and you were the hardest thing to give up.

They say the mind cannot comprehend what awaits us,
that sadness will be forgotten,
and they say that the eye has yet to see
and the ear has yet to hear the beauties that await us
in our new home.

They say rivers of honey my love
they say rivers of milk they say rivers of wine.
They say pearls and Gold thrones ,
they say musk and cool breezes.

Is it not fitting that I go to see this land afar to take you and our children?
I fear that the gates of opportunity will close behind me my love.
I fear others will hear what I hear and rush there and I will have nothing to offer you.

I know you will send our sons to look for their father.
Tell them that they will find me in every battle,
in every fight where the black flag is flown.

Tell them that the pain will be a pinch and then they will see what I see.
Tell them Green Birds wish to meet them.
Tell the Angels will call them by the best of names
and most of all that Allah The One The Eternal will be pleased with them.

I told you once that only 2 things will have me. You and death.

My life was with you but now I must marry again.
I must marry what was promised to me the moment I was born.
I must marry my fate and in turn I must marry death.

After death will come reckoning and if I stand with the best of creation
I will with the permission of Allah Lord of the Heavens and the Earth beg for you.

None was worthy to stand next to me in this life
so why is it I should desire another in the next?

#20• The Past.. part 1

Another day home alone after school, I tried not coming home so I stayed in the park till 4 and finally had to go home because the neighbour said its getting late and I shouldn’t stay in the park alone .
My brother would be gone for soccer training, my dad at work and my mum out with friends. Dad would have told his friend Michael to look after me because they think he’s a responsible person.

It would happen everytime they left me alone with him since I was six I’m now 10 and it still happens, I tried to tell mum but she waved it off saying I’m thrilling myself why would uncle Michael even look at me.

It started off by him calling me his baby and offering to help mum bath me everyday. I thought it as fatherly love until he did that stuff. I cried and it hurt so much, I told my best friend Aisha and she couldn’t understand she told me to tell her mum but uncle Michael said if I tell anyone he would hurt me more. Even though I didn’t tell anyone he still hurt me.

I started wearing long baggy clothes and I would play in the dirt so I smelt ugly but he would still, he said he did it cause he loved me.
He wouldn’t do it while Muhammed was with me, but Muhammed couldn’t stay with me all the time and I couldn’t tell him.

I went into the house and tried to walk quietly to my room as I turned in the passage to go to my room uncle Michael jumped from behind the wall and said: “Boo found you” he carried me into the room even though I kicked my legs and screamed. . .

Later that night I didn’t eat supper and went into the study, I googled a whole lot of stuff until I found a page called how to stop being abused, different people wrote different stuff, the something caught my eye and I grabbed a paper and wrote it down.
I hope it works..

#21• The Past. part 2..

I didn’t have the guts to go ahead with my plan till the following week. What if he found out I was lying it would become worst.
I sat every night at my underwear drawer and looked at the sanitary pad I had taken from my mum’s bathroom cupboard. I took it with me to school everyday and hid it in my drawer at night.

One wednesday after school I went to Aisha’s house and had supper there. As we were playing with her doll house. I pulled her behind the couch.

Aisha: “What’s wrong with you?”

Me: “Aisha, I have to tell you something”

Aisha: “So tell me”

Me: “Okay, first say promise, kassam, wallah you won’t tell”

Aisha: “Promise, kassam, wallah”

I told her what was happening and she listened with her mouth open in shock then I told her my plan.

Aisha: “You stupid, why didn’t you tell me long time ago”

Me: “I thought you wouldn’t believe me like my mother”

Aisha: “Okay never mind, I’m going to help you”

I pulled out the pad from my bag and she ran to the kitchen and came back with a squeeze tomato sauce. We squeezed alittle on the pad and as I was leaving I put it on.
We struggled to find out how it should go so Aisha went to get her brother’s lap top and we googled it.

As I left Aisha’s house she gave me a thumbs up. My heart was beating super fast and I didn’t know what to expect. I started reading all the surahs I knew and slowly walked home. The pad felt funny and I couldn’t walk properly.
Just as I expected he was in my room waiting for me, I walked in holding my stomach. “What’s wrong with you” he asked…

My plan worked perfectly! He saw the pad and took a step back. “You filthy pig” he said and walked out of my room. And since then he never bothered me again, he wouldn’t tell my parents that he’ll come and look after me after school and they blamed me. I told them I was fine staying on my own.

Aisha was extremely happy and she asked her mum if I could come everyday after school to play with her. Her mum said I’m more than welcome..

#22• Raeesa. Part 14

As I finished my story, Riyaad was smiling and he had tears in his eyes.

Riyaad: “Why didn’t you tell me?”

Me: “I didn’t know how you would take it”

Riyaad: “So where’s this man now?”

Me: “He died a few years ago”

Riyaad: “Lucky him”

Me: “So you okay with it?”

He took me into his arms and gently kissed my forehead then my cheeks and then he put his lips against mine. . . .

I woke up with the cat crying while she walked over my legs. Riyaad also woke up and gently pulled his arm from under me. He took the cat to feed her and kissed my forehead.
He came back after a while and I had a shower then we prayed fajr together.

Riyaad blow dried my hair and we got back into bed.
I slept till around 9 and woke up to find a bouquet of red and white roses and a card next to me. Riyaad had left for work already.

The card read:

“It Was Special For Me, It Was Perfect Actually, Better Than I Ever Thought It Would be. The Being Together, The Sharing.
You Took Away A Piece Of Me, My Soul, My Heart, A Piece Of Something Vital.
I Know Now That For The Rest Of My Life I’m Not Going To Feel Whole Again Unless I’m With You. I Love You Raeesa”

I read it 5 times and then took the roses and put in a vase with water. I played with Kiara and then got dressed, I wore a floral summer dress and white pumps. Eleanor saw me and smiled.

Eleanor: “Wow you look very happy today”

Me: “Yes I am”

Eleanor: “Did Madam find out you pregnant?”

Me (laughing): “No no”

I cooked lunch and waited for Riyaad.

At half past 3 he still wasn’t back, I phoned his office and they said he had left at 1. I tried his cell phone and he didn’t answer.

Then at 4 I got a phone call from his number,

Me: “Riyaad, I’ve been trying to phone you, are you okay?”

Nurse: “I’m sorry its not Riyaad, I phoned to tell you that your husband is in hospital and he requested that you should be here”

Me: “Okay thanks”

I put the phone down and cried, what could have happened to him. I ran upstairs and pulled on an abaya and scarf. I called Eleanor and told her what happened and asked her to call the driver and tell him to take me to the hospital. On the way to the hospital I made dua for his safety.
Oh Allah You protect my husband for You alone know how much I love him and what he means to me, Ameen.

#23• Raeesa. Part 15

As I walked into the ward I saw Riyaad, his eyes were slightly closed and he had a few plasters on his face, I walked towards him and he opened his eyes and smiled.

Riyaad: “You here”

Me: “What happened?”

Riyaad: “I was driving, thinking of you and someone broke my thoughts by bumping into me from the side”

Me: “You even have jokes now”

Riyaad: “Don’t worry its nothing serious”

He held my hand and gently kissed it. I closed my eyes and thanked Allah, my Riyaad was safe.

Riyaad: “Come sit here”

Me: “How long do you have to stay here?”

Riyaad: “Waiting for the doctor”

Me: “What did they do?”

Riyaad lifted up the sheet and showed me his leg, there was stitches from just above his knee till his mid-thigh.

Riyaad: “I won’t beable to walk for a few days”

Me: “Why didn’t you tell them to phone me earlier?”

Riyaad: “I didn’t want you to see, it was pretty bad”

The doctor came and said it was okay for Riyaad to come home, I helped the nurse put him into a wheel chair. She pushed him to the car where the driver sat waiting.

I warmed the food when we got home, and we sat and ate together,

Riyaad: “Wow did you cook this?”

Me: “Yeah I did”

Riyaad: “Its divine”

Me: “Jazakallah”

Riyaad: “Ey where’s Kiara?”

Me: “I don’t know, lemme go see”

I looked around for her and called her but couldn’t find her anywhere. I called Eleanor and asked her where’s she.

Eleanor: “Shhh come with me”

Me: “Where?”

She took me to her room and pointed at her couch, Kiara was sleeping there and Eleanor and put a blanket over her.

Eleanor: “She was crying so I fed her and she followed me since the,”

Me: “Oh okay, never mind keep her here and when she gets up, you can bring her there”

It was the first time I had gone to Eleanor’s room, it was huge with her own kitchen, lounge and stunning bathroom, her room had a sliding door leading to the pool. I just loved Riyaad more.

I went back and told Riyaad how she was sleeping, he smiled.
After esha he said he was really tired so we went to bed.

Riyaad: “Raeesa”

Me: “Jee?”

Riyaad: “We married for 4 months today, Raeesa I wanna have a baby”

Me: “Really?”

Riyaad: “Hmm I know we just married and that but I want to start life now, I want a baby with you”

He held me, and fell asleep. I lay thinking and then got up and walked onto the balcony, I stood and watched the waves and listened to the crickets. Yes I love Riyaad and I wanna have a baby. I went back to bed and put my head on Riyaad’s chest, he stirred in his sleep and put his arm around me.

#24• Raeesa. Part 16

Two weeks later I packed a picnic basket, Riyaad and I planned to spend the day at the beach which was in our back yard but we decided to make it an outing.
I wore a hot shorts and a top, I wanted to surprise Riyaad. I walked outside and placed the basket down, Riyaad saw me and walked over, he was wearing a 3 quarter shorts and he was wet.

Riyaad whistled: “Woah, look at you, you look stunning”

Me (blushing): “Thanks”

Before I could even register what was happening he picked me up from behind and ran towards the water while carrying me, as we neared the water’s edge he put me down and took my hand, we walked in together. The water was warm and it was a lovely day.

We spent the day splashing in the water, Riyaad taught me how to dive into the waves, I tried and I swallowed a whole lot of salt water, I coughed while Riyaad laughed at me, I punched him on his shoulder then he held me.

Riyaad: “You so cute”

Me: “Sies man I’m coughing and you laughing at me”

Riyaad: “Because you so cute”

Me: “Stop it”

Riyaad: “Okay okay”

He carried on laughing so I acted like I was upset and walked back to where the picnic basket was. He ran behind me saying sorry, I ignored him laughing to myself.

Riyaad: “Hey come on I was teasing you”

Me: “But its not funny Riyaad I could have died”

He put his finger on my lip.

Riyaad: “You can’t die, you can’t leave me”

Me: “So why you laughed?”

Riyaad: “I’m sorry baby, really really sorry, I didn’t know you would get upset”

He went on his knees and pleaded. I laughed at him.

Me: “Got you, I was teasing, wasn’t really upset”

Riyaad laughed with me and then started tickling me, I laughed and rolled over in the sand, he stopped and then put his hand on either side of me supporting him and he laid on top of me. He moved my hair away from my face and just looked at me, I stopped smiling and he kissed me. It was magical.

Riyaad: “I love you Raeesa, you the best thing that happened to me, I never had such fun before. You are my best friend I know I can face life as long as I have you, I love you so much”

Me: “Riyaad”

Riyaad: “Jee?”

Me: “I did a test this morning, you going to be a father”

Riyaad: “Really?”

Me: “Hmm”

He kissed me again and then went down and laid his head on my stomach.

Riyaad: “My daughter, you are going to have the most beautiful mother in the world, I’m going to protect you and love you but not as much as I love your mum, you going to liven up our house and bring joy to our hearts, I can say this and I’m sure about it that I love you already”

My eyes filled with tears and I put my hand on Riyaad’s head. He sat up and took my hand in his, he kissed it, then kissed my forehead, then he put his lips against my tears and wiped it away.

Riyaad: “I don’t want there to ever be a day when there’s tears in your eyes and I’m the reason for them, I did it once but never again. You are my life Raeesa”

Me: “I love you Riyaad”

#25• Raeesa. Part 17

We went to a doctor and she did another test for me, it was real I was really getting a baby. She gave me a few medication to start taking. I couldn’t believe that another soul was growing in me. I felt that I had achieved something and the smile just wouldn’t leave my face. Riyaad was also super excited, he kept looking at me and smiling, we went out to eat and Riyaad ordered so much of food saying that I need to feed our baby.

Later that night I listened as Riyaad spoke to his parents over the phone telling them our good news, he held my hand and winked at me then handed me the phone, Fatima (Riyaad’s mum) congratulated me and told me to look after myself and eat well.

Then Riyaad said I should call my parents just to let them know, I dreaded it but I called.

Mum: “Hello”

Me: “Slmz mum how you?”

Mum: “Who’s this?”

Me: “Mum its me Raeesa”

Mum: “Oh I’m okay, how you?”

Me: “I’m good”

Silence

Me: “Mum I phoned to tell you and dad that I’m expecting”

Mum: “Soo soon, how long you married? Like 3 months now?”

Me: “Yeah 4 months”

Mum: “Oh okay, anyway I’m expecting a phone call, slmz”

Riyaad looked at me and raised his eyebrow.

Me: “That’s why I didn’t want to phone”

Riyaad: “But why you are her daughter”

Me: “Not exactly”

Riyaad: “What you mean?”

I began telling him the next part of my life with my parents…

#26• The Past. Part 3..

Grade 11.

Another weekend waking up to my parents arguing, I checked my phone and messaged Sabeeha and Aisha telling them I’ll be late. We planned to meet at the library and do some research for some project. Because Aisha had family over for the weekend and Sabeeha and I hated meeting at our own houses.

I listened to my parents going on, but today it seemed different, they were arguing about me. I didn’t understand what they saying.

Mum: “It was your stupidity, now I have to look after her”

Dad : “She looks after herself, you don’t do any looking after”

Mum: “So get her her own place, everytime I look at her my blood boils”

Dad: “We can’t just do that, what will people say?”

Mum: “No one asked you to do what you did, didn’t you think then what will people say?”

Dad: “You quick to forget what you did”

Mum: “I did it because of her”

What the hell did he do, and how am I involved in it and what did she do and why am I blamed for it. I showered and got dressed then walked to the library.

I got back around asr time, read salaah then had to get ready for work. I worked at a take away every saturday night and whole of sunday.
It was busy as usual and crowded with boys, they whistled for me and tried to talk. I acted like I didn’t hear and played them no attention.

When I got home, mum and dad were sleeping and Muhammed was in the lounge watching tv. I sat next to him. He switched off the tv.

Moe: “What’s up sis?”

Me: “I need to ask you something”

I narrated what I heard this morning. And he looked at me with raised eyebrows.

Moe: “You really wanna know?”

Me: “Yeah, you know”

Moe: “You not mum’s child”

Me: “Hmm that explains a lot”

Moe: “Wait shoo lemme finish, so dad married some lady by the name of Humaira, and mum didn’t know. She had you and died a few days later, she told the nurses that she’s married to dad and they must call him and tell him to look after you. Mum was furious so dad sent her for an exotic holiday with a few friends, and him and I looked after you until she got back. Dad loved you a lot and spent most of his time with you until mum had an affair with a friend of dad’s and blamed it on you, saying that dad didn’t have time for her cause he was too busy seeing to you. So dad started spending less time with you but both went sour, his relationship with you as a father and with mum, cause ofcoz she didn’t change or leave that guy”

Me: “Yesis”

I cried and cried while Muhammed held me telling me to shh coz I have him and no matter what I’m still his cute little sister. I then told him about what used to happen with Uncle Micheal, his face got red with anger and his hands folded into tight fists.

Moe: “I’m 100% sure mum was involved in that, she’s a wicked woman but she my mother I have to respect her, lucky that bastard is dead otherwise I would have gone to kill him”

Me: “I don’t have to, she’s not my mother, now I know why she treats me the way she does no mother would do that to her own child”

Moe: “Raeesa I’m so proud of you, you went through that but you still you”

Me: “If it wasn’t for Allah and my help from Aisha I wouldn’t be here”

He went a little pink when I said Aisha’s name but I acted like I didn’t see. He always liked her but he wouldn’t say anything. When we were smaller he would always say one day I’m going to marry that girl.

Moe: “Just act like you don’t know anything, mum and dad will kill me if they know I told you”

Me: “Okay”

#27• Sabeeha.. Part 1

A voice kept telling me to stop but I had to. I lost 10kgs now I had to loose another 5. I was in the bathroom with my forehead against the bathtub vomiting out all the food my parents forced me to eat. It was much easier living on my own I could go days without eating and no one would tell me anything.

My life sucks, my boyfriend broke up with me cause he noticed me getting fatter and fatter, my 2 so-called friends are married and extremely happy. But I’m here living with my parents cause they found out about that I’m a drug dealer. Yeah well I started drugs at the age of 12 and became a drug dealer soon after, it amazes me how many people take it and people you would never think, are doing it.

I’m a qualified accountant and I make a lot of money oh well I used to until I started the drug thing and got fired from my super awesome job so now my new obsession is messing up people’s fairy-tale lives like how mine is messed up.

I was brought back to reality when my mother walked into the bathroom without knocking.

Me: “Why can’t you knock?”

Mum: “Its my house remember”

Me: “I hate you”

Mum: “The feeling is mutual”

I knew she was trying to help me, but why now? When I needed a mother she was too busy with her own things, when she could reform me she took notice too late.

Mum: “Sabeeha, there’s a phone call for you”

Me: “I don’t wanna talk to anyone”

Mum: “Its Raeesa”

My heart skipped a beat, haha the perfect bait.

Me: “Hey, how you”

Raeesa: “I’m good u?”

Me: “I’m good, heard you pregnant”

Raeesa: “Oh you know how fast news spread”

Stupid, like you didn’t want everyone to know, I wanted to scream but I had to be nice I needed something from her.

Me: “Yeah you know how people are”

Raeesa: “And how you doing? What’s happening?”

Me: “Oh you know the usual, back with my parents who’s on my case all the time, ey can’t I come stay with you for a while maybe I can get a job that side”

Raeesa: “I’ll have to ask Riyaad”

I faked crying.

Me: “Oh I shouldn’t have asked you, with the baby on the way you must be so tired just forget I asked”

Raeesa: “Okay wait”

Bingo. :p

Raeesa: “Riyaad said you can come, he’ll book a flight for tomorrow.

Me: “Oh Raeesa thanks so much, you the best”

Raeesa: “You know I’m always here for you”

We ended the call and I started packing making sure I pack all my awesome clothes.
Time to ruin someone’s life. Raeesa didn’t know what was coming her way.

#28• Sabeeha. Part 2

I reached P.E at around 2:00pm, Riyaad & Raeesa were waiting for me. Raeesa screamed and hugged me, I felt the slight bump of her growing tummy. Riyaad smiled and took the trolley from me, I made sure my hand brushed his as he took it.

Me: “Oh sorry”

Riyaad: “Its fine, no stress”

We walked out together, Raeesa asked about my trip and did I eat etc etc.*Yawn yawn*.

They took me out for a light meal and then we drove to their house, it was huge, I mean huge huge like the white house in Washington. I got off the car and wanted to take my bags but Raeesa said the driver will bring it to my room, like Oh Maaf.

She showed me around the house asking me to choose whichever room I’d like to stay in and Riyaad disappeared saying something about having some work to do.

Raeesa and I spoke about school days and all the things we used to do, then I realised that it was already supper and we didn’t prepare anything. Just then Riyaad walked in saying supper was ready. What?? He even cooks for Raeesa??.

I later found out that they have a cook that sorts out meals when they have visitors so Raeesa can entertain. Some people are just lucky while others end up with crappy lives like me.

#29• Raeesa. Part 18

I wake up with morning sickness and fall asleep as fast as a baby, pregnancy isn’t for the weak or maybe it just makes us weak strong.

Sabeeha was a blessing to have, we tried out all these new desserts and we sat for hours and just spoke about the most random things. Some days she was really mean though kept telling me that I’m getting so fat and I should watch how much I eat. I mean I’m 3 months pregnant ofcouse I’m supposed to get fat. She said it once infront of Riyaad and later he told me to just ignore her, she seems like a sufferer type. So next time I told her maybe she should stop making such lekker things and she got so happy and started blushing, it was the first time I saw her so happy.

After a few weeks I noticed her dressing with 3 quarter jeans and sleeveless tops when Riyaad was around, she made sure she passed him things on the table and purposely bumped into him on her way to somewhere and then giggled. It made my blood boil, I also noticed that Riyaad ignored her. I wondered what was her plan, she was always the sneaky kind at school, planning the pranks and then making as if she had nothing to do with it getting everyone else into trouble.

One night before we went to sleep Riyaad gently pulled me closer to him.

Riyaad: “What’s up with Sabeeha?”

Me: “Why?”

Riyaad: “You didn’t notice how she acts around me?”

Me: “I actually did, I really don’t know what she’s up to”

Riyaad: “Raeesa, I promise that nothing she says or does will change the way I feel about you, she may have a fit body that she never fails to show off but you are carrying my baby, and even if you get triple this size I’ll still love you, I’m just putting up with her because she’s your friend and she needs you”

Me: “I love you”

Riyaad: “I love you too my gorgeous pregnant wife”

#30• Riyaad. Part 4..

I woke to my phone ringing, half asleep and half awake I didn’t recognise the number so I answered.

A woman crying: “Riyaad please please come and pick me up and please don’t tell Raeesa”

Me: “Huh? Who’s this?”

Sabeeha: “Its me Sabeeha”

Me: “What the hell? Is this one of your tricks?”

Sabeeha: “I swear its not, please Riyaad”

I cut the call and went back to sleep, after a while I woke again to Raeesa’s phone ringing. Raeesa stirred in her sleep but didn’t wake up, these days she’s sleeping like a rock, I checked the caller ID it was Sabeeha.

Me: “Sabeeha what do you want?”

Sabeeha crying: “Riyaad please give the phone to Raeesa, its important”

Me: “She’s sleeping”

Sabeeha: “I’m really sorry, they going to be back in 20 minutes please come and get me”

Me: “Who’s they? Where you?”

Sabeeha: “Please don’t judge me, I’m at the sports grounds behind the mall, they was a fight and I got in the middle of it”

Me: “Shit Sabeeha, what were you doing there? Okay I’m coming”

Agghh I knew she was bad news. I quickly dressed, wrote a note to Raeesa saying I was going to pick up Sabeeha and I’ll explain when I get back then kissed her on her forehead and drove as fast as I could.

There was no way I was going to go to that area alone so I took a friend Sulaiman who is a cop with me. Sabeeha looked like something from hell, she has deep cuts on her arms through her super tight top and dirt everywhere else, she was tied to a tree around her waist with a rope and she was crying alot.

We quickly untied the rope and she ran into the car. Sulaiman drove back to the house and I sat quiet not knowing what to say.
When we reached my house, I reached to unlock the door but it opened and Raeesa stood there looking extremely angry.

Raeesa: “I don’t wanna hear anything, Sabeeha u are packing your damn bags and getting out of my house.

Me: “Raeesa relax”

Raeesa saw Sulaiman so she kept quiet understanding that its something important. Sabeeha was still crying and she stood like a lost sheep on the doorstep.

Me: “Sabeeha please go to your room and change into something decent”

It was the first time I told her anything. She looked at me with pleading eyes. I knew she was sorry.

Sulaiman and I explained to Raeesa what had happened. She stood up quickly and ran to Sabeeha’s room. I thanked Sulaiman and walked him to the door.

I walked to Sabeeha’s room and knocked, Raeesa said I should come in. She was wiping Sabeeha’s cuts with Dethol. I sat on the ottoman across them.

Me: “Sabeeha, I think Raeesa and I deserve an explanation. Your real purpose of coming here and what exactly were you up to at the sports grounds?”

Raeesa: “Riyaad please not now”

Sabeeha: “No Raeesa, he’s right you guys deserve an explanation, I’m really sorry for everything I did. I lost my job cause I’m on drugs and I came here with the sole intention of messing your life up but I didn’t succeed your love is too strong cause its pure”

Me: “And what were you doing tonight?”

Sabeeha: “Tonight is my turning point I don’t care how hard it is I’m going to change I promise you Raeesa and Riyaad. I went to get drugs, I couldn’t do without it anymore but that won’t ever happen again I don’t care even if I’m dying without it I won’t take”

Raeesa hugged her crying. I stood up.

Me: “Sabeeha have a shower and you can stay here tonight I’ll tell you my decision tomorrow”

#31• Sabeeha. Part 3..

It hurts me to think that all the while I was planning to ruin Riyaad and Raeesa’s marriage they knew about it and were still nice to me. I don’t deserve this, this kindness and goodness.

After everything that happened Raeesa stayed with me till 3am tending to my wounds, holding me while I cried and made for me hot chocolate and scones. She reassured me that Riyaad is a good person, he wouldn’t just throw me out so I’ve decided to leave on my own.

The tears just wouldn’t stop as I packed my bag. I thought about my ex-boyfriend and how I ruined his life after he left me.
As I walked into the bathroom to gather my toiletries, fajr azaan went. I slowly went down on my knees and covered my face.

After a while I stood up, made wudhu, put on a burkah and stood on a musallah after years. I prayed salaah not believing that I actually remembered how to. I couldn’t remember any surahs so I just read the 2 that I could remember pieces of.

I sat on the musallah for a long time just pondering, I knew this was my turning point I didn’t just lie to Riyaad last night. I stood up and looked for my phone. It was 7 in the morning already, how did time go by so fast. I dialled the number that I memorised at the age of 6. My mum answered with a confused tone.

Mum: “Sabeeha?”

Me: “Mummy”

Mum: “My baby, are you okay?”

Me: “Mummy, I’m so sorry for everything”

Mum: “Sabeeha I only want what’s best for you”

Me: “You don’t hate me?”

Mum: “You are a part of me, how could I hate you?”

I broke down again and cried.

Mum: “Doll don’t cry, this love that I have for you, your Creator loves you 70 000 times more, turn to Him, He’s waiting for you. See how He’ll amaze you”

Me: “Mummy I love you”

Mum: “I love you too”

As I cut the call there was a knock on the door, I quickly wiped my eyes and opened the door. It was Raeesa she hugged me.

Raeesa: “Sabeeha, are you okay?”

Me: “Yeah much better”

Raeesa: “Come Riyaad wants to talk to you”

Me: “Is he still upset?”

Raeesa: “No, come”

We walked into the lounge Riyaad was sitting with the cop from last night. I couldn’t remember his name.

Riyaad: “Sabeeha, please sit”

I sat down.

Riyaad: “Sulaiman said that you’ll have to go to Rehab for a while, I spoke to your parents and we’ve come to a decision”

So that’s his name, wow Rehab who would have thought.

Sulaiman: “But Rehab isn’t a good place for a muslim woman”

Oh you would know, I wanted to say but decided not to, I should stop being rude they only want the best for me especially if they spoke to mum.

Riyaad: “So we’ve decided that you going to stay here for a while until you get back on your feet and there will be a counsellor that will come and check your progress weekly. And I won’t tolerate any nonsense”

Me: “I really appreciate it, but I can’t burden you anymore, I want to go back to my parents”

Riyaad: “Your father is not well, nor is he financially capable of looking after you, you know that, that’s why you decided to move out”

Me: “I want to go back and get a job and look after them”

Riyaad: “You already have a job, you working for me, you can start next week after you’ve healed. And with your salary you can decide if you want to send some to your parents, and I’ll be watching if you tell me you sending for them but you spend it on that crap”

Ouch that’s harsh, but I deserve it.

Me: “Okay, Jazakallah so much”

Raeesa smiled and winked at me. I thanked them and Sulaiman over and over again.

Then I excused myself, there’s someone else I owe all my gratitude to. I walked to my musallah and sat down, knowing that this is going to be my favourite place in the world.

#32• Aisha. Part 4

I knew I should tell someone or at least Muhammed what was happening. But I couldn’t he just seemed so happy and excited, I didn’t want to be the one who would burst his bubble.

I just feel that no matter how hard I try I can’t fully love him, I’ve searched and thought about it but I can’t find a reason strong enough for the way I feel.

I thought after 6 months of being married I’d get used to his ways and habits but I guess I’ve failed. I know I’m not the same Aisha as I was before I married, that’s the only thing I’m certain about these days.

I heard the front door opening, Muhammed greeted loud and then came to look for me. I wiped my tears and smiled. This is how it would be from now. I would be an actress.

Muhammed: “Slmz love, how you?”

Me: “I’m okay, you?

Muhammed: “I’m alhamdulillah, can we eat supper?”

Me: “I didn’t cook”

Muhammed: “Oh, no problem I’ll just order”

He was supposed to get upset, ask me what was I doing the whole day, but no he’ll be so formal, treat me like I’m made of glass, its what I hate. Can’t he be like a normal husband? How do I tell him without looking like an idiot? Who wouldn’t want a life like this besides me.

Later that night as we lay in bed I turned to Muhammed.

Me: “Are you happy?”

Muhammed: “Yes, why wouldn’t I be?”

Me: “I didn’t cook today and I didn’t do anything else either”

Muhammed: “I understand, maybe you were just not liss to do anything”

Me: “Why are you so formal? Are you not comfortable with me?”

Muhammed: “We still getting used to each other, give it some time”

Me: “I’m sorry, I can’t do this”

Muhammed: “What you mean?”

Me: “I want a divorce”

#33• Muhammed. Part 1..

I grew up telling myself that when I get married, my marriage would never be like my parent’s. I would never be like my dad always listening to my mum and fulfilling her every want and desire.

Then I went to madressah and my whole outlook changed, I decided that I would protect and cherish my wife to the best that I can, if she didn’t feel like doing things in the house I wouldn’t question her because we all have days when we don’t wanna do anything, who says women don’t have that right also?

I would try and make her feel like a princess, that’s why when Aisha said she wants a divorce it came as a shock to me. I told her to sleep it through and we’ll talk about it in the morning, I needed time to register what she was saying and why but I doubt 1 night is going to provide that.

I watched Aisha sleep, her bangs covering her eyes and her mouth slightly open. I couldn’t understand where had I gone wrong after only 5 months. I gently took her in my arms careful not to wake her, she stirred in her sleep and then cuddled alittle closer to me. How was she like this while she was sleeping and hated me enough for a divorce while she was awake.

I fell asleep then and woke when the fajr adhaan went. Aisha was already in the bathroom making wudhu, I pretended to be asleep to see if she’d wake me up like all the other days. I slowly drifted off to sleep again, I heard Aisha calling my name and everytime I tried to reach her she went further away. I woke and realised she was waking me up for fajr.

We read salaah together and I made dua for a while, if she had woken me up for fajr, she still cares about me and my hereafter. I knew there was something attached to why she said she wanted a divorce, there always is with women.

Aisha: “Muhammed”

Damn! I loved it when she says my name.

Me: “Jee?”

Aisha: “What have you decided?”

Me: “Aisha, are you sure?”

Aisha: “Yes I thought a lot about it”

Me: “Can we give it more thought, can’t we talk about why you want a divorce?”

Aisha: “My mind is made up”

Me: “It can’t be, I can’t accept it, you were holding me in your sleep”

Aisha: “I wasn’t conscious”

Me: “How about this, you can go home for a week and think about it and if its not something we can fix then we’ll take the next step, I hope it never comes to that, I love you Aisha”

Aisha: “Okay, seems fair, can I go today?”

Me: “Alright when I get back from work I’ll take you”

I hoped by the time I got back she would have changed her mind.

#34• Aisha. Part 5

Finally at home.

I packed the biggest bag because I planned on staying for long by my parents. Muhammed left hugging me tight and asked me to promise him that I’d rethink my decision.

He had stayed for supper the day he dropped me off, I watched him speaking to my brothers and dad, he fitted in the family perfectly. Too bad he wasn’t gonna be staying in it for long.

My brothers were overjoyed that I came home “for a holiday”. Mum looked alittle worried, that I know it all look mothers give you all the time. Dad was in his own world, but happy that he could spend time with his only daughter.

The days went by, I went shopping with mum, she bought me all these awesome things saying that Muhammed would love to see me wearing it, hmm if only she knew. I spent time with dad in his office sorting out paper work for the shop, my brothers were rough with me, we played soccer and cricket together, everything just like old times.

Muhammed would phone every night asking me if I made a decision, and then days came when he just asked how I am and how was my day. Maybe he was loosing hope of me ever going back, that’s what I wanted right?

Things went back to normal, everyone stopped fusing over me. Everytime I suggested shopping to mum she asked don’t I have enough things already, my brothers went out with friends more often and dad seemed to like my company less, we worked in silence and hardly spoke.

Muhammed kept on phoning every single night, he never missed a night. Even though I hardly spoke he would just keep me on the line, there would be like 30 minutes silence but he’d never say he wants to get off the phone until I said.

#35• Aisha. Part 6

I woke up holding my pillow and crying. I dreamt about Muhammed, it was bad. Its been 3 weeks that I’m away from him already, I’m missing him like crazy.

I woke up and looked at my phone, 3 messages from Muhammed. I wondered if he had told Raeesa, but I doubt it she would have phoned me by now. That one of the things I like about him, he keeps things between us only and he never put our problems as his status or display pictures.

I stood up and noticed a letter by my dressing table. Who could it be from? I walked over and opened it. It was from my mum. It read as follows:

•••To my sweet daughter..

If you ever begin to wonder if he’s the one, ask yourself
Does his laughter warm you body from the inside out?
He knows that when you say 2 scoops you really mean 3 right?
Does he tell you how beautiful you are, and if yes, does he say it when the morning light falls on your face. More importantly when he tells you do you believe him?
Can you cry infront of him? I hope you can that means you trust him. When its pouring rain does he know that if your hair is curled and your eyes are sad it means that he should bring the car to you? When he asks what you want for dinner and you say you aren’t hungry does he ask if you’ve eaten today? And when you say you’ve had breakfast, I hope he knows you don’t eat breakfast and makes you a bowl of noodles because that’s you favourite comfort food.
Does he kiss you good morning & goodnight? Just because?
Do you know whether he likes his coffee black? Unless he wants it cool then he’ll probably want some milk in it? Do you know when he prefers tea to coffee? I never figured that out with your father, so if you have, you’re a better woman than I.
Have you figured out where’s he’s ticklish? Don’t let him convince you that he isn’t, I promise you he is.
Have you frustrated the hell out of him yet? You will, oh you will but its how you come out of it that matters.
And when he said he loves you for the first time, did you respond by asking if he’s afraid of heights, like you always said you will, I hope with all my soul that you did because despite his fear he fell for you.
Now, darling, you tell me, is he the one? •••

They say mothers know everything, how true that is I just realised now. She was always the poet but this was just knowing everything. From the start of the letter right till the end I found in Muhammed. Some may say he’s the dream kinda guy but he’s not just a dream to me he’s real, he’s my husband that I’ve taken for granted.

I went to the kitchen and found mum having breakfast, I walked upto her, hugged her and cried.

Mum: “Angel, give it a try”

Me: “I miss home soo much”

Mum: “So that doesn’t mean that you have to come home like the way you did, you should have just asked him, I’m sure he would have sent you happily not like this, not with you hurting his feelings. Muhammed loves you Aisha”

Me: “I know mummy, I love him too and I love you guys also, I don’t wanna have to choose. I’m scared of losing either of you”

Mum: “Aisha, did he ever say you must choose?”

Me: “No”

Mum: “So then? Where did you get this idea from? He loves you and he knows you love us, he won’t make you choose because he knows it will break you, Muhammed is a good person”

Me: “Can I go and phone him?”

Mum gently pinched my cheek.

Mum: “You crazy girl, you don’t have to ask, go phone him, make him happy”

I went back to my room and dialled Muhammed’s number, he answered on the first ring.

Muhammed: “Aisha, is everything okay?”

Me: “Muhammed, I wanna come home, I miss you”

Muhammed: “Alhamdulillah, yaayyyy can I come pick you up now please please”

I really do love this man. ?

#36• Aisha. Part 7

Muhammed picked me up the next day.
Mum made supper, her divine butter chicken with sweet vegetables and chocolate moose dessert. Muhammed held my hand tight under the table and the smile never left his face.

We drove back home later that night, we walked together into the house. There were rose petals making a pathway to our room, Muhammed let go of my hand and lit scented candles then switched off the lights..

After a few days we were sitting outside on the swing with Muhammed’s arm around my shoulder when Muhammed brought up the topic I’ve been dreading since I came, what made me wanna leave and not come back ever. I knew he deserved an explanation, but what if I hurt him again.

Muhammed: “Aisha, I know you don’t really wanna talk about this but it might help our marriage, and I never want you to leave again”

Me: “I’m back now, I’m not leaving again”

Muhammed: “It must be serious that’s why you left”

Me: “Okay, its just that I didn’t like that you were so gentle with me, I was used to my brothers always being rough”

Muhammed laughing: “So you don’t want me to treat you like a lady? I thought women love that?”

Me pouting: “Don’t laugh at me”

Muhammed: “You adorable”

Me: “Haha funny, but when I was at home now I missed your gentleness”

Muhammed: “I saw how your brothers are with you, but one day they’ll wanna treat their wives with so much of care, Raeesa always used to say she doesn’t know what I’d do to my wife”

Me: “Hmm I understand, and maybe I just missed my family and didn’t know how to tell you”

Muhammed: “Whenever you wanna go home, just say whatever day of the week it is, I’ll take you”

Me: “Jazakallah, I love you”

Muhammed hugging me: “I love you too” …

Friday I was dishing out the lunch and waiting for Muhammed to get back from Jummah when I felt strong arms around my waist. Muhammed gently kissed my nape. I turned around and he gave me 2 tickets and our passports.

Me: “What’s this for?”

Muhammed: “Read it”

I looked at the tickets and noticed arabic writing, my heart skipped a beat.

Me: “We going for Umrah?”

Muhammed: “Yes my dear, we leaving next week inshallah”

Me: “Oh my! Alhamdulillah”

Muhammed: “You happy?”

Me: “Yes! I’ve never been for Umrah and I’ve never been on a plane”

Yippy I can’t wait…

#37• Sabeeha. Part 4

Agh why is working so tiring, although I just sit at a desk doing accounting. I’ve been working for Riyaad for 2 months now, he’s the best person I’ve ever worked for.

My drug addiction is sorted out I don’t crave it at all these days, Sulaiman comes and checks with Riyaad every second week now. I’m sending money for my parents every month and the rest I’m saving.

My parents are extremely proud, I don’t think I’ve ever made them so happy not even when I completed my accounting degree. Raeesa also, I catch her staring at me and when I ask her what’s up? She says nothing, she’s just very proud of me. Alhamdulillah I realised that when you pleasing Allah, He makes it such that everyone else is also pleased with you.

Hmm friday finally, no work for 2 day, yippppy.
At supper that night, Raeesa was staring at me again but this time with a smirk on her face.

Me: “Raeesa, what’s happening? Why are you smiling like that?”

Raeesa: “Uhmm nothing”

Me: “Seriously tell me”

Raeesa: “Oh did I tell you that Aisha and Muhammed are going for Umrah?”

Me: “So nice! But why are you changing the subject?”

Raeesa laughing: “You don’t give up, do you”

She’s the cutest pregnant person, she’s now already 5 months and showing soo much, I love feeling the baby kick its something unexplainable.

Riyaad: “Sabeeha, Sulaiman wants to put in a proposal for you”

Me: “Huh? What? No way! The police guy?”

Riyaad: “Yeah”

Me: “But me? He deserves better”

Riyaad: “And who are you to decide what you deserve?

Raeesa: “He has a point, speak to your parents and we’ll tell Sulaiman, he said he doesn’t mind going to Joburg to meet them”

When you take that one step towards Allah He grants you things that you never thought you’d deserve..

#38• Sabeeha. Part 5

I phoned my parents to tell them the news and while I waited for them to pick up the phone, I thought about Sulaiman’s proposal, but what if I wasn’t ready to be a wife and what if I’d just mess up his life. I know I’m trying to change but what if that isn’t enough..

Mum: “Hello”

Me: “Salaam how you mummy?”

Mum: “WasSalaam, Alhamdulillah and you?”

Me: “I’m okay, mum remember that police guy Sulaiman?”

Mum: “Yeah you mentioned him, why?”

Me: “He proposed and he wants to come to Joburg to meet you and dad, I didn’t give an answer yet”

Mum: “Why not? Are you waiting to get grey then you’ll decide to get married?”

Me: “Mum! You so mean”

Mum: “I’m joking love, yeah tell him yes he can come and meet us”

Me: “You think I’m ready?”

Mum: “Yeah, why not?”

Me: “Okay I’ll tell Riyaad and Raeesa”

Raeesa and Riyaad were overjoyed with my decision, Riyaad phoned Sulaiman the next day and they booked plane tickets to Joburg. We were to leave on sunday and return on wednesday.

In the plane Riyaad and Sulaiman sat together and Raeesa and I were sitting on the other side of the row, everytime I looked at Sulaiman I caught him looking at me, then he’d look down and blush. From all the guys that I’ve known he was the first that blushed.

When we reached, my mum was waiting for us I hugged her extremely tight.

Mum: “Wow”

Me: “I missed you Ma”

Mum: “I missed you too”

We walked ahead and Raeesa, Riyaad and Sulaiman followed.

Mum whispering: “He looks nice”

Me: “Yeah he does”

We got home and prayed maghrib salaah, dad would be back from work soon. Mum prepared tea and samoosas, the usual proposal food. While we were eating dad came home, Riyaad and Sulaiman stood up to greet him, I could see that dad recognised Sulaiman. But from where? Dad walked out of the dining room.

Dad shouted from the room: “Faeeza, can you please come here”

Mum: “One minute I’m coming”

She went to the room and we could hear them slightly”

Mum: “Nabeel, what is wrong?”

Dad: “Over my dead body will Sabeeha marry that boy!!”

#39• Sabeeha. Part 6

What the hell is Dad going on about now. Sulaiman was a decent boy from Port Elizabert and my parents stayed in Joburg since forever. Where could they have ever crossed parts?

I went to the room.

Me: “Dad, whats going on?”

Dad: “You didnt bother to tell us who this boy is before bringing him into our house?”

Me: “How do you even know him?”

Mum: “Can we all just calm down now, he came all the way can we at least host him well? And we’ll discuss this later.

Dad: “But…”

Mum: “Thats final, we’ll speak about this later”

We all went back to the dining room and Raeesa looked at me with a raised eyebrow, I shrugged.
We ate and then it was time for me and Sulaiman to be alone to talk. We spoke about general things. He asked alot of questions but never once brought up my incident. It was like he was never there when it happened.

Before we knew it 1 hour had gone by. How could we have spoken for soo long. I knew I liked him, I just had to find out why dad didnt.

Sulaiman and I went back to the dining room. And a little while later Sulaiman stood up to leave. He was going to stay with some family friend.

As soon as he left.

Dad: “My final say is Sabeeha you will not marry that boy”

Riyaad: “Why is that?”

Dad: “I knew his father, he wasnt a good person”

Riyaad: “Im sorry, I dont mean to be rude but you going to judge him on what his father did?”

Mum: “Exactly, its Sabeeha’s decision, she has to live with him. I dont think you can grade him because of his father”

Dad: “Ok you have a point but I wont allow it”

Me: “Dad, did you even speak to him? And knowing my background, who would want to marry me? At least he sees that I have some good in me”

Raeesa: “Sabeeha, dont bring yourself down, you a wonderful person”

Dad: “Sabeeha, you right I didnt think of it like that, Im sorry. You read istikhara and decide, Im with you on whatever you decide”

#40• Sabeeha. Part 7

It was dark and I was feeling extremely hot. I had to find something. I continued to empty my drawers not bothered about the mess I was making. My forehead was wet with perspiration.
I knew I had it hidden away somewhere here but where? What had come over me? I was fine all this time without it.
I moved some of my old clothes from the drawer and there it was. The white powder that I couldnt do without, I slowly opened it and licked my index finger then dipped it in..

I woke with a shock. What kind of a dream was that? My body was drenched in sweat. I started crying and curled into a ball. At least it was just a dream. I got up and went to my drawer to see if what I found in my dream was really there.

I moved my clothes just like I had in my dream and instead of the small packet of white powder I found a paper folded into a tiny square I opened it slowly afraid of what I’d find. Written on the paper was ‘Only Allah loves me. No one else’

The flashback came, it was when i was 8 years old and we went to my dad’s sister for holiday. My 10 year old cousin Safwaan kept telling me that my parents don’t love me and they just found me on their doorstep and that when I speak to them they’ll just tell me to go away. I screamed at him and said hes lying.
Later that day I went to my mum while she was reading a magazine and just a Safwaan said she told me to go away so I ran upstairs and wrote this on a paper and promised myself that whenever I think my parents love me I must remember this.
It was stupid now that I think about it. That I based my judgement on that one occasion and forgot about everything else they did for me. I realised that thats where my insecurities started. Someone once told me that when you find the root of your problem you’ve defeated it.

I went back to sleep knowing what answer to give Sulaiman.

#41• Aisha. Part 8

All around me I could hear people chanting the Labbayk, it was wonderful, some louder than others.
We were on the bus from Jedda airport to Makkah, it was just after 11pm, every moment more beautiful than the others. I gripped Muhammed’s hand tighter as he said the Labbayk loud and I said it softer. He turned to me smiling.

We finally came to our hotel, my heart beating faster. We rushed upstairs and left our bags and went to the Haram. Muhammed gently covered my eyes as it was my first time seeing the Kabah leading the way forward. Then he took his hand away. I opened my eyes waiting for them to adjust to the light, then I saw it my heart took a leap of joy and tears filled my eyes, I lifted my hands while falling to my knees and made dua.

Next we made Tawaaf, going around the Kabah I couldnt take my eyes off the black cloth covering the most sacred house in the world.

Walking from Safaa to Marwaa made me think of maktab madressah when our apa first told us about Hazrat Hajrah and Hazrat Ismaeel. It was tiring but there was nothing that brought me so much pleasure.
As I waited for Muhammed to go and shave his hair I read Quraan. He came back trying to cover his head. I laughed knowing how he hated to have his hair cut so short.

As he handed me a glass of Zam-zam the Fajr azaan went. We stood up and Muhammed went to the men’s side while I went to the ladies side. I performed salaah behind Shiekh Sudais! Some people get to do that every few months but as it was my first time my excitement knew no bounds.

Muhammed came and sat next to me then took my hands in his playing with my fingers.

Me: “What you doing?”

Muhammed: “I finished salaah and now Im reading Tasbeeh on your fingers so we share the Ajr (reward) and inshallah we will be together in Jannah”

#42• Raeesa. Part 19

We set the date in the middle of December, that would mean that I’d be 7 months pregnant, Im already soo huge wonder what I’d be by then.

Riyaad said that the walima take place at our house. Sabeeha’s parents and few other family were going to come stay from the week before to help. I was extremely excited, I finally get to use all my guest rooms and my super huge dinning table.
Sabeeha stayed with her parents for one week, she wanted her mum’s suggestions on a few things I guess somethings you just need your mum’s advice and somethings she had to get in Joburg..

Riyaad and I stayed at his parents for the next 2 days because Muhammed and Aisha were going to come back from umrah. Aunty Fatima (Riyaad’s mum) was super excited to see us and she insisted that I wear her dress for Sabeeha’s wedding. She had worn it for some family’s wedding while she was expecting Riyaad. It was a gorgeous lilac dress.

We visited Aisha & Muhammed. It was so sweet seeing them happily together. Aisha had told me what happened but Im just glad they back together. Aisha spoke about her umrah in detail and it just made me want to go also.
Inshallah after I give birth we’ll go for hajj.
They said they’ll also come stay by my house wedding time, I couldnt wait my huge house will finally be full.

Everything was going soo well in my life shukr..

#43• Sabeeha. Part 8

Wedding week, I still couldnt believe I was getting married.

While I was at my parents in Joburg, Sulaiman came home to speak to me and my parents. He had phoned dad the previous day saying he needed to speak to us about a few things and if I wanted to change my mind I should let him know. I couldnt sleep the entire night wondering what was it that he needed us to know. Stupid thoughts came to my mind like what if he had cancer or what if he has a child or what if…

I felt like a zombie in the morning. I helped mum make tea and I baked some cupcakes. Exactly at 3 the door bell rang, my heart beated faster and I thought I’d mess my pants. x_x

He had come to speak about more important things than my crazy ideas. He explained his job to us saying that sometimes he would be called to the station at any time and am I prepared for that? He couldnt really take off at anytime and hardly got holidays and he didnt get paid very well. But he had a few properties that his parents had left in his name so he was doing well. He said he wanted to tell us before but he didnt want to get his hopes high that I would say yes.
Mum had a worried look on her face as Sulaiman left.

Mum: “Sabeeha do you understand the seriousness of what he said?”

Me: “Its just me, mum Im bad luck”

Dad: “What do you mean bad luck? Dont you think you are privileged? Hes a policeman, he’ll always be helping people and everytime he goes out with you being okay with it you’ll be getting reward. Its not like you lived a princessess’s life here so theres not much to addapt to. Think about it and let us know tomorrow. And if its important I as your father I really like him”

I wonder when did dad become so wise. My answer the next day was still the same. Dad phoned Sulaiman and told him the good news. Dad got off the phone laughing.

Me: “Why you laughing?”

Dad: “He didnt know what to say, I think he thought you would change your mind, he kept saying Alhamdulillah”

Me blushing: “How could he be so happy about marrying me?”

Dad: “Sabeeha my darling you are a beautiful girl, hes lucky to have you”

Dad hugged me I couldnt believe it. I just stood still and then hugged him back waiting to see if I would wake up and realise its a dream.

************************
Back to wedding week. Raeesa and I did last minute shopping. I was glad I worked for Riyaad and saved my money. Wedding shopping isnt cheap and I didnt want Raeesa & Riyaad to pay for anything else, they were paying for my waleema reception and they didnt accept a cent from my parents or Riyaad. Sulaiman had suggested that we have a nikaah with no reception and then a waleema. I was happy with that, the sunnah way inshallah we would have Barakah in our lives.

I bought a simple yet elegant silver dress that I could always wear again. Raeesa wanted me to wear her dress but it was too fancy for a small reception.

Everything was almost ready for my big day alhamdulillah.

#44• Sabeeha. Part 9

This post is dedicated to Yumna Rawat Bera, Mardiyyah Moosa, Atiyyah & Salma. Enjoy
__________________________________
Omw! I can’t get married no way no way.
I was standing infront of a full length mirror in my underwear 2 days before my nikaah. What am I gonna do about all theses stretch marks and all this extra fat. No one can see me like this. No one no one not even my mum. I quickly put on my clothes not wanting to look at my disgusting self any longer. I sat on the bed and tears started flowing then I started sobbing that loud hiccup kind cry.

There was a knock on the door. I immediately wiped my face wih the back of my hand.
Me: “Who’s there?”

Raeesa: “Its me, open here”

I opened the door and she saw my face.

Raeesa: “Sabeeha, whats wrong? What happened?!”

Me: “I cant get married, Ray I cant”

Raeesa: “Why not?”

Me: “I have stretch mark and orange peel on my hips!”

Raeesa started laughing. I threw a pillow at her. And she threw it back at me.

Aisha: “Hey whats happening here?” standing in the door way.

Me: “Come inside and close the door”

Aisha picked up the pillow and hit me with it. Thats it, I grabbed a pillow and hit her back.. We ended up rolling in laughter in all the feathers that came out of the pillows, we were little scared to hit Raeesa so she took advantage and hit us then hid her face behind the pillow saying “You cant, Im pregnant”
When we calmed down Aisha sat next to me and Raeesa leaned against the head board.

Raeesa explaining: “Sabeeha here says she cant get married because she has stretch marks and orange peel”

Aisha stood up quickly, lifting her abaya and showed me her hips.

Aisha: “Oh my! How am i married with all this”

Me: “You also have”

Raeesa: “Yip everyone has, its normal for a human. Dont worry after a few weeks of marriage your hair on your legs wont even bother you and they wont even notice”

Me: “No way! Im going to wax every week even if there’s half a cm of hair”

Aisha: “Yeah yeah we all said that, but now it doesnt even really bother you”

Raeesa: “Wait, I almost forgot”

Me: “What?”

She went out and came back with a small gift bag.

Me: “Whats this?”

Raeesa: “Sulaiman gave it, open it and see”

I quickly opened it with a smile on my face. It was a pair of pink socks and ”In case you get cold feet” written on it.

Me laughing: “He’s organized”

Raeesa laughing: “Anyway Aisha and I came to give you the birds and bees story”

Me: “You joking right?”

Aisha: “No serious, your mum said we should come because she’s too shy”

Me: “Okay so come start, lets hear”

They gave me alittle advice and virtues on being a good wife. I had been reading A Gift to a Muslim Bride since I got engaged. Preparing for marriage isn’t just about the truso, its also about preparing for the more important parts like making tauba and dua so that Allah grants barakah in your marriage because thats the only thing that matters at the end of the day and whats the use of awesome lingerie when your husband isn’t even happy wih you.

#45• Raeesa. Part 20

Wedding morning was crazy, everyone was running around looking for things. Aisha and I were doing last minute things for the tables, the decor was turquoise. We still had to do Sabeeha’s make up and hair for under her scarf when shes alone with Sulaiman, and there was soo little time left!
Riyaad was with Sulaiman and the moulana who would read the nikaah.

Just before zohr everyone settled down in the lounge infront of the receiver to listen to the nikaah and the men went to the musjid. I could just imagine what Sulaiman was going through, he missed his parents and he would have loved for them to be here for his big day but Allah is the best of planners.. Elenor was super excited, she wanted to see how muslims get married. So she sat with us after asking me for a scarf.

After the nikaah people went to read zohr and Aisha and I locked Sabeeha in my room to give her those moments before she met Sulaiman. I knew she needed it, every bride needs to sit down before Allah and just speak to Him. Its moments you can never get back again.

Everyone stood at the door, waiting for the groom to come. As indian tradition they all asked him for money and shame he took out a few envelopes and gave them. We later found that some of them were empty.

Sulaiman walked to the room to spend alittle time alone with Sabeeha. He walked into the room then ran out with a shocked look on his face.

Sulaiman: “You sure thats my wife right?”

We all laughed and Riyaad pushed him telling him to go his minutes are getting wasted. We all went outside to the gazebos that we set up, the women to one side and the men to the other. We put a sail to divide the two making it completely sperate. A real stunning beach wedding.

After what seemed like ages Sulaiman walked Sabeeha to the women’s side leaving her outside and I with my huge stomach went and walked in with her.

It was a wonderful affair, everyone was laughing and joking, commenting Sabeeha on her beauty.

A while later Sabeeha went into the house saying she needed the bathroom. After a long while she still hadn’t returned so Aisha said we should go and check. We looked around the kitchen, dinning room and loundge but she was no where. Then we heard voices near the staircase.
As we went closer, I noticed Sabeeha speaking to this weird looking guy wearing a black and pink suit, he had spiked hair with blonde tips and he kept telling her to speak softer putting his hand on her shoulder.

Me: “Sabeeha, whats going on here?”

She turned around in shock.

Sabeeha: “Its not what you think”

Just then Sulaiman, Muhammed and Riyaad walked into the passage..

#46• Aisha. Part 9

Seeing Sabeeha with that guy was a shock to all of us. They werent doing anything extreme but still it was her waleema. Sometimes you just cant understand why people do certain things, I cant judge because I also did something really stupid a few months back.

Why did Muhammed, Sulaiman and Riyaad have to come at that moment while Sabeeha had a shocked look on her face and that guy’s hand on her shoulder.

Sulaiman: “Ashraf? Whats happening?”

So he knew the guy.. Ashraf quickly took his hand off her shoulder and Sabeeha looked down ashamed.

Ashraf smirking: “Nothing bru, just catching up on lost time with your wife here”

Sulaiman: “You two know each other?”

Ashraf smirking: “Yes yes we go way back. Im surprised she didnt tell you”

Sulaiman’s face fell he had a look of pure hurt. Some people get tested over and over again.

Muhammed: “Wait before we make any rash decisions lets sit down and talk properly”

My wise husband ..
Sabeeha was quiet all the while and Raeesa was shaking her head. Riyaad was fuming. No friend would want his best friend to have to go through this on his wedding day.

Luckly people had already started leaving.
Riyaad: “Okay we’ll talk. Let this waleema at least end off well and no one make a scene till everyone leaves till then act like nothing happened”

Ashraf snorted.

Riyaad continued: “And if you cant do that please get out of my house!”

We would have to wait and see what happens. Sabeeha walked quickly out of the house going to the women’s side. She had a smile pasted on her face for the rest of the time pretending that everything was fine. Who knew that her past would hit her in the face and plus on her wedding day. Im just really happy that Sulaiman didnt just give her a talaaq like most men would do these days if they found a man’s hand on his wife and a guilty look on her face.
Allah save us. Ameen

#47• Sabeeha. Part 10

This is dedicated to you Lamees. Enjoy
______________________________

Like I said before Im plain bad luck. Bad luck couldnt even leave me on my wedding day or maybe because its my wedding it didnt leave me.

I never ever expected to see Ashraf again in my life. Remember the guy that dumped me and then I tried to ruin his life and after that I started dieting like crazy and taking drugs full time. Hmm same one. He turned out to be Sulaiman’s childhood friend. Just my luck.

I pretended like everything is fine for the rest of the day. I was pretty good at that. All the guests started leaving. It was just my parents and us. Riyaad told them he needed to speak to me and Sulaiman.

So we sat in the lounge while they were sorting out all the left over food. Aisha and Raeesa were helping my mum. But Sulaiman asked Muhammed to sit with us because hes an aalim and he could advice us.

I was extremely nervous. Not knowing what to expect. What a way to end my nikaah & waleema. Who would have thought that on the happiest day of my life I would be having such a discussion. Once we all sat down Sulaiman came into the room and looked around deciding where to sit. He then came to sit next to me leaving a small space between us like he did after nikaah.

Muhammed softly: ” In the name of Allah. Oh Allah help me say and do the right thing ameen”

Riyaad: “Ameen”

Muhammed: “Okay Ashraf, can you tell us what happened?”

Ashraf: “Well, Sabeeha tried to ruin my life sometime back after I treated her like dirt and knowing Sulaiman’s temper I thought he’d just talaaq Sabeeha but I guess I was wrong. I stayed to ask all of you for maaf for the way I carried on, its not befitting for a muslim….”

Woah what???

Ashraf continued: “Sulaiman buddy, you have a gem, look after her and I hope we can still be friends”

Double woah what….

He stood up greeting everyone then he stood infront of me.

Ashraf: “Sabeeha Im sorry and I hope you can find it in yourself to forgive for you only know what I put you through. May you have the happiness you deserve cause I can see how much you’ve changed”

He walked out. There was silence..

Muhammed: “Okay that went off well, Riyaad and I will leave you guys to talk, its up to you now”

#48• Sabeeha. Part 11

This is dedicated to Radiyyah and my cute new friend Mardiyyah. Its alittle short but Enjoy
_______________________________

Sulaiman sat on his knees infront of me and took my hands in his and gently kissed them.

Sulaiman: “Im sorry you had to go through that on the biggest day of your life”

Me: “No im sorry”

Sulaiman: “So how was your day besides that?”

Me smiling: “It was lovely shukr”

Sulaiman: “For me too, are you ready to go home?”

Me: “Yes, I just want to greet my parents”

Sulaiman: “They coming to drop you off so Im going alittle earlier”

Me: “Okay”

He stood up and kissed me on my forehead making me blush. He smiled and lightly pinched my cheeks.

Sulaiman: “See you later Humaira”

Me hurt realizing that he didnt know my name: “Its Sabeeha”

Sulaiman: “Jee I know, Nabi صَلَّى اللّٰهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمUsed to call Hazrat Aisha that because she had pink cheeks, so you will be my Humaira”

Me smiling: “Oh…”

Sulaiman: “Let me go before you make me stay here forever”

Hes the sweetest ever. I didnt want him to leave either but no way was I going to tell him. So I just nodded.

We walked out of the lounge together holding hands. He kinda did something to my heart and my tummy. They were both going crazy.

#49• Sabeeha. Part 12

Shortly after Sulaiman left we got ready to leave. My dad insisted that he wants to drop me off at my new house. I greeted Aisha and Raeesa then we left.

The house wasn’t very far from Raeesa’s house. The door was slightly open so we walked inside. Dad greeted loudly. Sulaiman came to the door and took my bags from dad’s hands. I really felt sorry for him, no one was here to help him welcome his bride home, not that I minded. He took us for a tour of the house it was simple but comfy.

They sat for a while and then stood up to leave. Mum hugged me and told me to look after myself she was crying and it made me cry also. Dad hugged me then kissed my forehead saying that he loved me. Mum greeted and hugged Sulaiman as he was offically her Mahram (someone you can’t marry).

Mum: “Sulaiman please, now you my son don’t hesitate to ask for anything”

Sulaiman: “Jazakallah Aunty Faeeza, I mean Mum”

They left leaving us alone. While Sulaiman went to lock the door I sat on the sofa looking around. It still hasn’t hit me that I’m married. I looked around at the frames in the lounge and jumped up when I heard Sulaiman come back into the lounge with a bouquet of roses in a white box.

He came to sit next to me and held my right hand and gave me the roses.

Sulaiman: “These are for you”

Me smelling it: “Jazakallah”

Sulaiman: “I prepared something for you, I think I should do it before I chicken out”

Me: “What?”

Sulaiman: “I prepared a nasheed to sing to you”

Wow..

Me: “Okay sure go ahead”

Sulaiman laughing: “But you have to promise that you won’t laugh”

He’s sooo cute..

Me smiling: “Fine I promise”

He started singing a nasheed by Maher Zain called For the rest of my life (I came to know that later). His voice was beautiful. I felt tears coming to my eyes understanding that every word was for me. He wouldn’t have just sang it if it didn’t relate to us. When he was done he cleared his throat.

Sulaiman smiling: “You can break your promise and laugh, its fine”

Before I could even think my arms were around him hugging him tight. Then I realised what I had just done, he must think I’m so forward I thought as I tried to pull away but he held on tight.

Sulaiman whispering: “I wanted to do that since the moment you became halaal to me”

I felt heat rushing to my cheeks and I pulled away looking down.

Sulaiman: “My Humaira”

#Maher Zain • For the rest of my Life

I praise Allah for sending me you my love
You found your home and its here with me and I`m here with you..
Now let me let you know
You`ve opened my heart
I was always thinking that love was wrong
But everything was changed when you came along

And theres a couple words I wanna say..
For the rest of my life
I`ll be with you
I`ll stay by your side, honest and true
Till the end of my time
I`ll be loving you, loving you
For the rest of my life
Through days and night
I`ll thank Allah for opening my eyes
Now and forever I…I`ll be there for you

I know it deep in my heart
I feel so blessed when I think of you
And I ask Allah to bless all we do
You`re my wife and my friend and my strength
And I pray we’re together in Jannah
Now I found myself I feel so strong
Everything was changed when you came along..

And there’s a couple words I wanna say..
For the rest of my life
I`ll be with you
I`ll stay by your side, honest and true
Till the end of my time
I`ll be loving you, loving you
For the rest of my life
Through days and night
I`ll thank Allah for opening my eyes
Now and forever I…I`ll be there for you

I know it deep in my heart..
And now that you`re here infront of me I strongly feel love
And I have no doubt
And I`ll sing loud that I`ll love you eternally…

For the rest of my life
I`ll be with you
I`ll stay by your side, honest and true
Till the end of my time
I`ll be loving you, loving you
For the rest of my life
Through days and night
I`ll thank Allah for opening my eyes
Now and forever I…I`ll be there for you

I know it deep in my heart..

#50• Aisha. Part 10

Yippy!! finally 50 posts
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We were so tired after Sabeeha and Sulaiman left but there was no way we were going to sleep. It was the first time Raeesa and I were alone since I came.

We made sure that Sabeeha’s parents were comfortable, it was a little cold so we gave them blankets then Raeesa made popcorn and I made my famous coffee and we sat in the room while Muhammed and Riyaad decided to play pool table.

Raeesa: “Phew I’m soo tired and fat”

Me: “Will you stop that? You have a reason to be fat and plus you cute fat”

Raeesa: “Hmm yeah maybe, I can’t wait to give birth”

Me: “I think there’s something wrong with me”

Raeesa: “What you mean?”

Me: “I’ve stopped my pill after 2 months of marriage and now I’m married for 8 months and no news yet”

Raeesa: “No man, there’s nothing wrong with you. It takes time”

Me: “Yeah maybe”

Raeesa: “Doll don’t stress Allah knows when’s the right time and He’ll grant you a baba”

Me: “Ameen.. I always wanted to know why exactly did your father force you to marry Riyaad?”

Raeesa: “Well he signed some business contract with Riyaad and thinking that if his daughter is married to him it will be secure. Its really stupid though”

Me: “Yeah it does sound stupid”

Raeesa: “But I’m glad he forced me I couldn’t ask for a better husband shukr”

Me: “That’s good, I’m also really happy, I wish the same for Sabeeha”

Raeesa laughing: “Oh listen to us, we sound like ladies that have hundred grand kids”

Me: “We’ll do fine when we older we can just practice from now”

#51• Sabeeha. Part 13

I woke up to Sulaiman gently tapping my shoulder. I smiled and pulled the blankets off me. My favourite part of the day Fajr prayer.

We read salaah together with Sulaiman leading, I got to hear his beautiful voice reading Quran. Then Sulaiman got up and brought 2 Qurans one wrapped in a red cover with my name on it.

Sulaiman: “A present from me”

Me: “Its beautiful Jazakallah”

Sulaiman: “Do you mind reading Surah Yaseen with me?”

Me: “No not at all”

He put his Quran away and put his head on my lap.

Me: “You won’t need a Quran?”

Sulaiman: “Nope I want to hear you read and I’ll read with you”

Me: “But,, wait you a hafiz?

Sulaiman: “Jee”

Me: “No one told me”

Sulaiman smirking: “You not happy?”

I gently pulled his beard laughing.

Sulaiman: “Ouch”

Me: “I’m delighted alhamdulillah”

Sulaiman: “That you hurt me? Or that I’m a hafiz?”

Me: “Abit of both”

Sulaiman: “Sies”

I started reading, making too many mistakes and Sulaiman correcting me each time. I was really embarrassed and made a promise that I’m going to read every day to perfect my reading inshallah. When we were done Sulaiman sat up and hugged me.

Sulaiman: “Mashallah”

Me: “No I read really bad, inshallah I need to work on my reading, maaf”

He put his index finger on my lip.

Sulaiman: “No my love your voice is beautiful, I’ll help you when we get back inshallah”

Me: “Why were we going?”

Sulaiman: “Oh man act like you didn’t hear that”

Me: “I did now you have to tell me”

Sulaiman: “I took a while off from work so we going to do little bit of the Garden Route but instead of going to Cape Town we going to East London”

Me: “Wow that’s awesome, so when we leaving?”

Sulaiman: “What you think about leaving today after Asr?”

Me: “Yes no problem”

#52• Sabeeha. Part 14

Why did I even tell Sulaiman that I’ll be ready by asr time? Sulaiman went for asr salaah, he would be back anytime now and I sat on the floor next to my bags, I delayed sorting it out till now. I couldn’t decide what to take and what to leave. I wish my mum was here but they had left for Joburg this morning.

Sulaiman standing by the door: “What’s wrong?”

Me: “I don’t know what to take”

Sulaiman: “So take everything”

Me looking at him with hope: “I can do that?”

Sulaiman: “How many bags?”

Me: “5 and 2 shoe bags”

Sulaiman: “What! I don’t mind but I’m sure the Bellhop will”

Me: “What’s that?”

Sulaiman: “The person that takes your bags in at a hotel”

Me: “Oh that, What must I do?”

Sulaiman: “Let me help me”

Me: “Really?”

Sulaiman: “Yeah why not, just hide all the stuff you don’t want me to see”

I stuck my tongue out at him and he laughed. We both sat on the floor sorting out my bags and I pack the things I wouldn’t be taking into the cupboards. We spoke and laughed. Sulaiman is an awesome person to talk to and he laughs easily.

By the time we finishes it was maghrib time so Sulaiman said he’ll go for salaah and when he gets back we’ll leave. I went for a quick shower and dressed into a black skinny jeans and a peacock blue top.

As we were leaving Sulaiman went back into the house and returned with a pretty blue and black hijab.

Sulaiman: “I think this will go lovely with your outfit”

I frowned then took the scarf from him and draped it.

Sulaiman: “Wow you look gorgeous”

I blushed getting into the car.

Sulaiman smirking: “Humaira”

We drove until we came to a gravel road. I hate gravel roads they just go on and on. Finally we saw some lights and a wall.

Sulaiman: “Okay close your eyes”

Me: “Aghh”

I closed my eyes and heard Sulaiman parking and then getting off. I heard few voices and then silence. I wanted to peep but I didn’t. Then Sulaiman opened my door and told me to get off. We walked with Sulaiman holding me around my waist guiding me.

Sulaiman: “You can open”

I opened my eyes and as it was adjusting to the bright lights I heard a friendly voice saying: “Welcome to Kwantu Private Game Reserve. May I get you coffee or hot chocolate”

#53• Sabeeha. Part 15

The hot chocolate was divine and they brought hot scones with it. We ate that while the Bellhop (my first new word that I learnt since I’m married) took our bags in. Then they showed us our room. Omw! I was lost for words I just stood and stared. My parents could never really afford holidays so we used to sometimes go to family’s houses.

Next morning I woke and started making coffee.

Sulaiman: “What you doing love?”

Me: “Making breakfast”

Sulaiman: “No don’t worry, they make breakfast for us. You can get ready we’ll go to the dining area just now and come back and shower”

I put on an abaya and draped my scarf.

Breakfast was absolutely delicious. They made for us omelettes with our choice of fillings, baked beans, different types of juices and a whole lot more. I ate like I’ve never seen food before.

They told us that our game drive will be at 2pm. We went back to our room and showered, I dressed into a jeans, boots and floral top. This time I made sure I wear a scarf. As I was draping it infant of the mirror, Sulaiman put his arms around my waist and rested his head on my shoulder.

Sulaiman: “Wow, you look beautiful”

Me: “Jazakallah”

Sulaiman: “I could just marry you all over again”

Then we walked around and went to see the lions in the enclosures. We got to play with Lion and Tiger cubs. It was wonderful.

Then we had lunch and left for our game drive. It was really interesting. Afterward we went to the Elephant Sanctuary. We fed them oranges and then rode them the feeling was beyond words.

After supper, a 7 course meal I lay my head on the pillow and was out. It was a tiring but amazing day. Tomorrow after breakfast we leave for Port Edward.

#54• Raeesa. Part 21

Exactly 1 and a half months after Sabeeha’s wedding, I was sitting by the kitchen table with Elenor eating breakfast when I felt my pants wet and the sound of water.

Me: “Oh My! I think my waters broke!”

Elenor: “But you not yet 9 months, wait you can give birth now”

Me: “Please phone Riyaad”

She ran to the phone and called him. The pains started coming. My doctor told me about it but I didn’t think it would be so bad. It started softly on my side and then it hit me hard, this was just the beginning.

Riyaad came into the house calling my name. I asked Elenor for my hijab and I walked to the car holding on Riyaad. He reclined my car seat taking ages.

Me: “Hurry up!”

Riyaad: “I’m trying to!”

It hurt like hell. I thought I would give birth in the car. We got to the hospital and they rushed me in the stretcher.

Me screaming: “This is the last baby I’m having!”

Riyaad put his hand on my forehead, it was cold and felt lovely.

Me: “I hate you, don’t you ever touch me again”

He laughed and took his hand off my forehead.

Me: “Did I say you can take your hand away?!”

Riyaad laughing: “You said I shouldn’t touch you”

I started laughing at myself and then screamed because I could feel another contraction.

Riyaad: “I’m sorry Raeesa, I love you”

Me: “I know, I love you too”

After half an hour which seemed like ages my doctor came and did some things.

Doctor: “You already 8cm, when I tell you to push then push as hard as you can”

Riyaad started reading quraan, his voice was soothering. Doctor counted till 3 and then I pushed as hard as I could gripping hard on Riyaad’s hand.

After a few more pushes and a whole lot of pain I heard the most beautiful sound ever, a baby crying. I had given birth to a baby girl. The nurses wrapped her in a towel and gave her to me.

I took her in my arms tears filling my eyes. I knew I was in love, she was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. Riyaad came and sat next to me. For a few moments it was just us 3.. Then she started crying. The nurse helped me feed her. And then Riyaad gave the Adhan in her right ear and the Iqaamah in her left ear.

Riyaad smiling: “Do you still hate me?”

Me: “Ofcourse not”

He climbed onto the bed next to me and put his arm around me, I rested my head on his chest and fell asleep.

We named her Leeya (soft).

#55• Raeesa. Part 22

Holding baby Leeya in my arms, I knew that life would never be the same, nothing would be about me or Riyaad anymore and I was happy with that. I just hated the fact that my parents wanted to have nothing to do with me or Leeya.

I had spoken to Muhammed about it and he said that they were normal with him and Aisha. I couldn’t understand what had happened to my father’s worry about the business thing or maybe he knew now that Riyadh wouldn’t be the type of person to break his promise because of family issues.

Riyaad’s parents understood and they offered to come and do my confinement/Huwawar. I was delighted, his mum is more like a mum to me than my own mum. Uncle Zubair took off from work and they came the next day with a whole lot of gifts.

It was very awkward at first feeding Leeya infront of her and explaining to her certain things. I used to stutter and I know she must have secretly laughed at me. But she just smiled and hugged me saying she always wanted a daughter and she got just that.

Having a baby isn’t easy I can relate to that. If you take it as a blessing it will be. But if you take it as a burden or a duty it will be tougher. Leeya is a blessing in very way.

We would be doing her Aqeeqa soon. Aunty Fatima and Uncle Zubair were preparing for some huge lunch. I just overheard them talking but when I asked about it they acted like they didn’t know what I was talking about. I love their excitement it makes up for not having my parents around.

#56• Aisha. Part 11

I knew it! I can’t have children.
I went to the doctor today, he said that I have cyst on my womb and I have to take some medication so it will melt away. He said once it melts away I can have children. But how long will that be? What if it never goes away? And how must I ever tell Muhammed?

I prepared supper and after we ate I brought up the courage to tell him.

Me: “Muhammed I need to tell you something”

Muhammed: “Yes I’m listening”

I explained to him what the doctor said.

Muhammed: “So it doesn’t mean that we can’t ever have kids”

Me: “But you don’t understand,what if it never goes away?”

Muhammed: “Then we’ll adopt”

Me: “Are you serious?!”

Muhammed: “Yeah why not?”

Me: “I can’t believe you, you think its so easy?!”

And I started crying.

Muhammed: “Oh Aisha, you over reacting”

That’s it. I get up and ran to the room slamming the door and locking it. Sometimes I just hate him. He doesn’t understand me, even though I try to explain myself. I have to always be the adult and worry. He’s just so chilled, not bothered about a thing.

Muhammed knocking on the door: “Aisha open please”

Me: “No just go away”

Muhammed: “I want to give you something”

Me: “What?”

Muhammed: “Something, you’ll see when you open”

My curiosity got the better of me and I went to open the door. He had nothing in his hands.

Me: “You lied, you don’t have anything to give me”

Muhammed: “I do”

He wiped my tears and hugged me tight.

Muhammed: “I’m sorry, I didn’t understand what it must mean to you. But inshallah we will get through this”

Me: “But what if you want a baby and I can’t ever have and you decide to marry someone else and……”

He put his finger on my lips.

Muhammed: “No that will never happen, I do want a baby but only with you. If I can’t have that I don’t want a baby”

#57• Sabeeha. Part 15

Sulaiman: “…and Goldilocks ran as fast as she could out of the house and through the forest to her home”

Hmm you must be wondering why the hell would a man be telling his wife the story of the 3 bears at 2am. I’m having one of my cravings again. And my patient husband made me strong coffee and has to talk to me for at least 10 minutes so that my craving would pass.

They say that you can’t defeat drugs and really you can’t. It comes back and finds you no matter where you are. I’ve been having a lot of craving recently.

Few weeks later I sat crying on the kitchen floor. It was too much for me to handle. I had 3 mugs of coffee but still I was craving. Sulaiman wasn’t back from the station as yet and I had no idea what to do. I couldn’t understand why I was feeling like this and why were the craving so intense. Then I threw up and threw up, it was terrible my whole body shook. What is happening to me?

As I cleaned myself up the phone rang, it was my mum.

Me: “Mummy”

Mum: “Baby are you okay?”

Me: “No.. Mmum imm nott okay”

Mum: “What’s wrong? Is it Sulaiman?”

Me: “No mum we fine, I’m having a lot of craving lately and I just threw up so much”

Mum: “Cravings? For what?”

Me: “Agh mummy!”

Mum: “When last did you get your period?”

Me: “I don’t know uhm I think just before my wedding”

Mum: “That is a long time ago, please do a test”

Me: “Okay lemme go I’ll speak to you later”

Could I really be pregnant? My body is so messed up I really doubt it.

#58• Sabeeha. Part 16

So I never bothered to do a test and I never told Sulaiman what had happened. Sometimes you should never hide things from your spouse and sometimes you should. But its so confusing to tell which things go where.

As the weeks went by I felt more and more sick. I missed my mum terribly and didn’t know how to tell Sulaiman. I learnt how to cook from a recipe book and I found that I was actually really good at it.
I read Quraan everyday with Sulaiman, its amazing how you can just fall in love with the words and kind of understand what your Creator is telling you but not completely. Then the idea came, and I searched for a teacher that would be willing to teach me Arabic.

I spoke to Raeesa and she agreed that it would be really nice and she would like to join. Soon we had about 15 ladies that wanted to join us but no one to teach.

One night at supper I told Sulaiman my idea and held my breath not sure what he would say.

Me: “What do you think? You can say its stupid, yeah you know I wasn’t even thinking straight, I mean really how could I learn Arabic and help others learn…”

Sulaiman: “Sabeeha”

Me: “Yeah?”

Sulaiman: “Chill, you really are crazy”

Me pouting my lips: “Tell me something I don’t know”

Sulaiman: “I love you”

Me: “I know that also, I love you too”

Sulaiman: “Okay I know someone that will be able to teach you, a friend’s wife is an Aalima, we can ask her and see what she thinks”

Me: “Wow I can’t wait to tell Raeesa and I can’t wait to start, Sulaiman I have to tell you something else also”

Sulaiman: “You really amaze me, how do you manage to speak about a hundred things in one sentence”

Me: “Just like that, I could teach you sometime, anyway I’ve been throwing up and I didn’t get my ahms since we got married and my mum, I mean mummy said I should tell you and do a test but I didn’t know how to tell you and could you please take me to the pharmacy to get a test”

Sulaiman: “Woah woah Sabeeha slow down, there you doing again”

Me: “Sorry I’m just nervous and I said everything all at once so I can only be nervous one time”

He stood up and walked over to me and kissed me.

Sulaiman: I love you!”

Me: “I love you too”

My heart felt as if it would burst out of the love that I felt for him.

#59• Aisha. Part 12

My future looked empty. What is life without a child? Muhammed and I fought more and more often over the smallest and craziest things. He stopped saying he’s sorry and hardly tried to make up. I never said sorry because I never was. Everything I said to him I meant so why would I say sorry when I didn’t mean it?

Why is it that people who want children don’t get and those that don’t want, they the ones that get? Then they throw them away or give them for adoption. I know I can’t question my taqdeer (fate) but it gets so hard at times.

I’m getting soo fat and I couldn’t be bothered. I hate cleaning my house and I hate showering. I mean whats the use? The house will get dirty again anyway. Muhammed is hardly at home, I know he would never cheat on me, he just sits in the musjid till as late as he can so that he doesn’t have to come home.

He said there’s nothing to come home to because I’m always grumpy and complaining. Sometimes I really wish he never came to see me or even better I never said yes to his proposal. But it all seemed so rosy then. Its hardly his fault but I really can’t blame myself and he’s the only other person around.

One morning I woke to the bell ringing. Who could it be? It must be one of those ladies selling clothes, I wonder if you get that in other parts of the world or is it only here in Joburg. My head hurt from all that wondering, I rarely did that these days. I went to the door and opened it.

Me: “No thanks mama, I don’t want anything”

I looked up when I heard nothing. It was my mum and dad! Mum had her mouth slightly open in shock and dad was shaking his head.

Me: “Wow mum you should have told me you coming”

Mum: “Aisha! What has happened to you?”

Me: “What you mean?”

Mum: “Look at yourself, you look ugly!”

Me: “Thanks mum”

She pushed passed me and walked into the house and screamed.

Mum: “Why is your house so dirty? Where is your helper?”

Me: “I fired her”

Mum: “Why?”

Me: “Cause I didn’t want her to come and clean and ask me why am I not bathing”

Mum: “You don’t bath?!”

Me: “Agh mummy, why did you even come? I was enjoying myself just fine”

Mum: “Muhammed phoned me and I didn’t believe him, but now I feel like he didn’t tell me half of how bad it is”

Agh I hate him even more now. I just knew what mum was going to do next and I dreaded it

#60•

It takes 59 seconds to become a minute and 59 minutes to become an hour. In those 59 seconds or minutes your life could change drastically. You could either get all you want or loose all you have.
I’ve decided to live my life as though I only have 59 seconds. Sometimes when I look back I’m proud of how I spent it and at times I’m not. I know if my parents looked at me they wouldn’t be proud. But they not here. They never will be.

Sitting here in the plane going back to a place I have very few memories of. Who knew.

A few hours later I walked out of the airport, hired a car and drove to the house. It was beautiful, much bigger than I remembered. I unpacked my bags, laid down and fell asleep. I’ll deal with all I have to tomorrow..

#61• Leeya. Part 1

As I walked into class, everyone turned to stare.
“Who the hell is she?” A girl with 5 inches of make up asked.
I rolled my eyes looking for a place to sit. Just then the teacher walked in. I later found out his name was Richard Martin.

Richard: “Okay everyone settle down”

Why isn’t there any empty chairs?

Richard: “Hello, can I help u?”

Me: “Yes, I can’t find a place to sit”

Richard: “Oh are you Lelya?”

Me: “Leeya”

Richard: “Hey Fayaaz can u take that bag off the chair next to you and let this beautiful lady sit there”

Fayaaz: “Huh? Oh yeah sure”

The day flew by which I was grateful for. Lunch break I had to get a few things so got to the cafeteria late.

I walked to the back and sat down taking out my phone. Few texts from Katherine, as I replied I heard someone pulling out the chair across me and sitting down. I looked up.

Fayaaz: “Hey beautiful lady”

Me rolling my eyes: “Hi desk neighbour”

Fayaaz: “I like your accent, where you from?”

Me: “I don’t have an accent, I’m from Cape Town.

Fayaaz: “You just proved that you do”

The bell rang and I stood up.

Fayaaz: “Well see you around”

________________________________
This post is dedicated to Aish, Anon & Anonymous Muslimah.. Sorry for the late post.

#62• Leeya. Part 2

As I was walking out of school a few weeks later a car pulled up in front of me.

Fayaaz: “Hey want a lift?”

Me: “Why?”

Fayaaz: “Hmm let’s see.. I think it might be my taqdeer”

Me: “What?”

Fayaaz: “Never mind just get in”

He leaned over and opened the door for me.

Me smirking: “I don’t get into the car with strangers”

Fayaaz: “You choose to make me a stranger, I might be closer to you than you think”

I got into the car, it smelt divine.

Me: “What you mean?”

Fayaaz: “Just joking”

We were soon at my house.

Fayaaz: “Wow, stunning house”

Me: “Thanks”

Weeks went by and each day he asked to drop me off until it became a habit some days I would wait at his car. He never asked me any questions, and I never told him anything. Everyone knew him at school and he had alot of friends, I couldn’t understand why he spent time with me.

One day as we were on the way to my house he said he needs to stop at the shops.

Me: “Perfect, I also need something”

We went into the shop together and met at the cashier.

Fayaaz: “You smoke?”

Me holding up the box: “Yes cigarettes, amongst others”

#63• Leeya. Part 3

Sitting by my bedroom window, smoking twisp and listening to music, I thought about Fayaaz. He was a nice guy but they all turn out the same and they all want only one thing. Some just take longer at getting it and they act sweeter. You never know which you dealing with.

The next day after school, Fayaaz was waiting in his car for me at his usual spot.

Fayaaz: “I wanna show you something”

Me: “What?”

Fayaaz: “Wait”

We drove until we came to the beach alittle futher from the one everyone usually go to, I’ve never been this side before.

Fayaaz: “Come on”

We walked towards the water and he sat down.
Me: “Should I be seeing something?”

Fayaaz: “You impatient, just wait”

Me: “Okay Mr”

Fayaaz: “See there”

I look where he pointed and a colony of seagulls flew past infront of us. Their white feathers bright in the afternoon sun. It was ordinary but so beautiful.

Me: “Wow”

Fayaaz: “I know right? It happens every day at this time”

Me: “How come though?”

Fayaaz: “I don’t know”

I looked at him, his eyes were shining and he looked so cute. I bent forward and kissed him, but he moved his face so I got his cheek. He stood up and looked extremely angry.

Fayaaz: “What the hell Leeya!!?”

Me: “What do you mean?”

Fayaaz: “Why would you try to kiss me?!”

Me: “Well isn’t that what you want?”

Fayaaz: “Of course not!”

Me: “Wow you the first guy ever”

Fayaaz: “Whatever let’s just go”

He never said a word to me the whole way back and didn’t greet me when I got off the car. He stopped waiting for me after school so I had to take the bus. I knew I had to get my own car though.

#64• Leeya. Part 4

5 months has passed since the incident with Fayaaz. I really miss him but there was no way I would apologise, it would just make me look more stupid than i already do.

My car would be coming in the week. I bought it a month ago but it looked too boring so I sent it to get modified. Last few days of taking the bus. I hate taking the bus.

I needed to get a few things from the supermarket so I stopped there on the way home. As I was paying I felt someone looking at me, so i looked up. And this lady wearing a niqab was staring at me like she knew me or something. I raised my eyebrows at her and she realised she was staring so she looked away. It was really creepy. I wonder who she was and why was she looking at me like that. I know no one here besides Fayaaz so I doubt she knows me. Hmm Fayaaz, maybe I should just try and apologise.

The next day at school I decided to put my pride away for the day and I waited next to Fayaaz’s car. My heart started beating faster ad I saw him approaching the car.

Me stuttering: “Hey”

Fayaaz: “Hey”

Me: “Uhm I wanted to say I’m sorry for that time at the beach, it won’t happen again”

Fayaaz: “Its okay, need a lift?”

Pheww that was easy.

He dropped me home and we sat for hours in the car talking. I told him about my car that would be arriving soon. And he told me about the hifz class that he was doing for a few years now.

Fayaaz: “So where are your parents? Won’t they be worried?”

Me: “I need to go, see you at school tomorrow”

I quickly got off the car and shut the door. I went into the house, closed the door, sat on the floor and I cried. Shit I need a cigarette badly.

#65• Leeya. Part 5

The next day I tried my best to avoid Fayaaz. It was easier than answering his question and the universe just made it better because my car was coming today. I was walking in the hallway when I saw Fayaaz. Oh no. I turned around began walking the other way.

Fayaaz: “Hey Leeya”

Me: “Oh hey, I didn’t see you”

Fayaaz: “Come, I’m taking you out”

Me: “Why?”

Fayaaz: “Cause its the last day that I have to drop you off so I’m celebrating”

Me: “Ha ha very funny. You’ll miss me”

Fayaaz: “Whatever makes you sleep at night”

Me: “Pshht”

He took me to a restaurant and as we were waiting for our food.

Fayaaz: “So what’s your story?”

Me: “I don’t have a story, what’s yours?”

Fayaaz: “Okay well, my mum couldn’t have kids so her friend who is my real mum gave me to her”

Me: “What?!”

Fayaaz: “Okay simple sentences. My birth mum was expecting her 8th child in 7 years, me. And my now mum couldn’t have kids some medical reason. So my birth mum said she’ll give me to her, understand blondie?”

Me: “Wow, but why would you tell me?”

Fayaaz: “Cause we friends, and everyone knows”

Me: “Ookay”

Fayaaz: “Tell me your story”

Me: “Oh look our food is here I can’t talk while I’m eating”

Fayaaz: “U crazy”

We ate in silence. Then Fayaaz drove me home. When he parked in the driveway like most days I didn’t get off the car. I started telling him my story..

#66• The Past..

I ran down the stairs in my silver fairy dress. We were visiting my granny in her new house in Cape Town. My grandfather passed away a few months ago. So my granny said she wants to move to Cape Town near her sister. I couldn’t wait.

Me: “Mum come now”

Dad: “Yes mum, you taking too long”

Just then mum walked down the stairs in a pretty black and white abaya. She’s the most prettiest person I know.

Mum: “Here I am. Let’s go”

Dad: “Wow you look amazing”

Me: “Oh no I forgot to say bye to Eleanor!”

Dad: “Go quickly”

I ran to Eleanor’s room and knocked on the door. She opened immediately, picked me up and hugged me.

Eleanor: “I will miss you my princess”

Me: “I’ll be back soon so don’t miss me”

She laughed and put me down. We walked together to the car. The driver was putting our bags in the car. Mum, Dad and I sat at the back. As we were driving to the airport I looked out the window at the sea between all the trees.

Mum screamed: “Watch out!!”

And then there was a loud bang. A car hit us from the right. The airbags popped out and i heard mum crying I saw the car was in the middle of the road. Mum put her arms around me and then there was another loud bang and everything went black. . .

I opened my eyes to bright lights and looked around at the white wall. Where am I?

Me whispering: “Mummy?”

Granny: “Oh baby you awake”

I looked at her. Her eyes were red and puffy.

Me: “Everything is hurting”

She hugged me.

Granny: “I’m sorry my baby”

Me: “I want mummy”

She started crying.

Me: “What’s wrong?”

Granny: “Your mummy and daddy are gone to Allah. Allah loves them lot lot so he wanted them with Him”

I closed my eyes and fell asleep. They will be back. My mum and dad wouldn’t leave me alone.

#67• Leeya. Part 6

I finished telling Fayaaz my story with tears rolling down my face. I quickly wiped it away and looked at him. He looked away.

Me: “I’m gonna go, see you”

Fayaaz: “No wait”

I saw him wiping his face.

Me: “Are you crying?”

Fayaaz: “Who wouldn’t?”

Me: “Wow”

Fayaaz: “And then you went to stay at your granny?”

Me: “Aha”

Fayaaz: “So she’s here?” May I meet her?”

Me: “Nope she passed away, that’s why I moved here. This was my parents house”

Fayaaz: “So you live here alone?”

Me: “Yeah”

Fayaaz: “But money and food and stuff?”

Me: “I cook, and my dad’s partner at work sends me money, her name is Sabeeha or something. Dad left her his business”

Fayaaz: “Woah”

Me: “Yeah”

Just then his phone rang.

Fayaaz on the phone: “Ma I’m on my way”

He looked at me.

Me: “You need to go?”

Fayaaz: ” I wish I could stay and talk to you”

Me: “No stress, see you tomorrow”

I got off the car and walked into the house. It felt more quiet than normal. I heard him drive out of the driveway and a few moments later, I heard another 2 cars pulled in. I looked through the window. It was my car!

#68• Leeya. Part 7

I got off my car and locked it the next day at school. I could feel everyone’s eyes on me =p

Fayaaz: “Hey, nice car”

Me: “Hey, thanks”

Fayaaz: “My mum wants you to come for supper tonight”

Me: “Oh howcome?”

Fayaaz: “Coz someone saw us together, and told her so she wants to see if you good enough for me”

Me: “What!?”

Fayaaz: “I’m joking”

Me: “Very funny, see you later”

Fayaaz: “See you”

________________________________________

I stood in front of my cupboard later not knowing what to wear. Fayaaz told me his parents were abit holy so I think I should wear something decent. I finally decided on a long black dress, pumps and a demin jacket. I drove to the house wondering what I would talk about and what type of people they were. I parked in the driveway of a simple house behind Fayaaz’s car. I walked nervously towards the door, just as I was gonna knock, the door opened.

Fayaaz: “Booo”

Me: “Were you waiting by the door for me?”

Fayaaz: “Pshht you not so important, come in, my mum is in the kitchen”

We walked to the kitchen, a pretty lady stood in an apron by the stove, the table was set beautifully. It was all for me.

Fayaaz: “Mum this is Leeya, Leeya this is my mum Aisha”

She turned and her eyes widen slightly then she walked to me and hugged me tightly. I raised my eyebrows at Fayaaz and he shrugged. When she pulled away I saw her eyes were filled with tears.

Me: “Are you okay Aunty Aisha?”

Aisha: “Jee yeah I’m fine”

She turned around and I saw her wiping her eyes.

Aisha: “Fayaaz go call your father, we can eat”

Fayaaz to me: “See you just now, don’t miss me”

Me rolling my eyes: “As if”

Aisha: “Sit down, make yourself at home”

Me: “Thanks”

Aisha: “How do you like P.E?”

Me: “Its nice, just extremely windy”

Fayaaz walking into the kitchen: “I’m back, Mum she did miss me isn’t?”

Aisha: “You hardly gave her time to miss you”

I laughed and then stopped when I heard someone clear their throat. I looked up and saw an extremely handsome man with a white kurta and black turban walk into the kitchen. His beard was neat and shaped to perfection. When he greeted his voice was clear and loud. I immediately felt respect for him so I stood up and greeted.

Fayaaz: “This is my dad, Muhammed” . . . .

#69• Leeya. Part 8

The food was great just Fayaaz’s parents were creeping me out. Everytime I looked up they were looking at me. I wonder what was up with them. After dinner, Fayaaz took me to show me where the bathroom was.

Me: “I think your parents don’t like me”

Fayaaz: “Why would you think that?”

Me: “I don’t know, they keep looking strangely at me”

Fayaaz: “You really are crazy”

I don’t know why but he had a really nervous look when he said that.

When I came out of the bathroom, Aunty Aisha said that Fayaaz and his dad were gone for Esha.

Aunty Aisha: “Would you like to read salaah, then when they get back we can have dessert”

Me: “Yeah sure”

She took me to her room, gave me a long hijab and we prayed together. Just as I was finishing Fayaaz came in.

Fayaaz: “Wow you look really pious in that”

Me: “So normally what do I look like?”

Fayaaz: “One word?”

Me: “Yeah”

Fayaaz laughing: “Satan”

Me laughing: “I thought you would say like me”

Fayaaz: “Hmm but that’s 2 words”

Me: “You an idiot, you know”

Fayaaz: “Come on, let’s go have dessert”

We went downstairs and I heard Fayaaz’s parents talking in the kitchen but as soon as we walked in, they were silent. I was now completely sure that they didn’t like me. The dessert was divine, I was so tempted to ask for more.

Uncle Muhammed: “Leeya, I actually want to talk to you”

Me extremely nervous: “Uhm yeah sure, uhm what about?”

Aunty Aisha: “Fayaaz come help me pack the dishwasher”

I looked at Fayaaz and tried to tell him to stay. But he wouldn’t look at me. What was going on?! They walked out of the lounge and I looked nervously at Uncle Muhammed. As soon as they were out of the room. He turned to me. I saw him whispering something to himself.

Uncle Muhammed: “Leeya, this might come as a shock to you, but I’m going to just get straight to it”

Me: “Yes?”

Uncle Muhammed: “I’m your mother’s brother”

Me: “What do you mean?”

Uncle Muhammed: “I’m your uncle”

Me: “That’s not possible”

Uncle Muhammed: “It’s true”

Me: “So where were you all this time? How come my grandmother never told me about you? I really think you mistaken”

Uncle Muhammed: “I can explain everything”

#70• The Past.. Muhammed

I sat in the waiting room at the hospital wondering if it was all a dream. My sister, young and healthy had passed away. My father had passed away a few months ago and my mum remarried. I phoned her to tell her about Raeesa. She didn’t seem interested. Leeya was still in a coma. I didn’t know what was going to happen with her. I felt someones hand on my shoulder so I looked up.

Aisha: “Mum is here”

Me: “My mum?”

Aisha: “Yes”

I couldn’t believe that she actually came. I stood up to greet her. And Riyaad’s mother Aunty Fatima came into the waiting room. Her eyes red and her face puffy. She greeted my mum but she just turned her face.

Me: “Mum!”

Mum: “I’m not going to greet her!”

I lowered my head down in shame. She will never change. Aisha came to sit next to me and held my hand. Alhamdulillah for her. Mum stayed for a while and then left saying that now that my dad is not alive. She has no connection to Raeesa or Leeya.

Few days later, Leeya woke up. She just cried for her parents non stop for the next couple of hours. The hardest part was going to explain to her that they passed away.

We decided to go to the house and shower and eat while Aunty Fatima stayed at the hospital. Aisha was really tired, and Fayaaz was tired and troubling her.

The next day, Leeya was discharged and we decided to sort out all the things at the Raeesa and Riyaad’s house. Aisha cooked supper and we all sat down to eat.

Aunty Fatima: “I’ll be going home tomorrow”

Me: “Okay and how about Leeya?”

Aisha: “I’d like to keep her”

Aunty Fatima: “No, you have Fayaaz. It will be hectic. I want to keep her. You can visit weekends or holidays”

Aisha: “Okay”

Me: “Okay I don’t mind. She can come here for holidays also, if that’s okay with you”

The next day, we drop them at the airport. Put the house for sale and we left to go home. Who would have thought that, that would be the last time we saw Leeya.

We wrote letters to her but they were just returned with a letter saying we have the wrong address. We tried phoning but someone else had moved in and they said Aunty Fatima had left no forward address or number. I had lost a sister, brother in law and niece all at the same time.

#71• Leeya. Part 9

This post is dedicated to Aamina Suleman.
____________________________

I looked at Uncle Muhammed in shock. I couldn’t believe what he just told me. My granny always told me that my mum was the only child and her parents died before I was born. I wonder why she kept me away all this time.

Aunty Aisha and Fayaaz came back into the room.

Fayaaz: “So I guess we family”

Me: “Oh no, why oh why?”

Fayaaz: “You aren’t even alittle happy?”

Me: “No”

Fayaaz: “Me neither”

Aunty Aisha went to the glass cupboard and took out a photo album. She showed me my parents and me as a baby. My mum was extremely beautiful just as everyone said. I turned to Uncle Muhammed.

Me: “So is my other grandmother still alive, your mum?”

Uncle Muhammed: “Yes she is, she might be coming this weekend, you can meet her”

Me: “But do you think she would want to?”

Uncle Muhammed: “I’m not sure, we can just introduce you as Fayaaz’s friend and see how it goes”

Aunty Aisha: “Yeah I think that will be okay”

Me: “Okay that’s fine”

We spoke for a while longer, Fayaaz kept teasing me and I like always had answer for him. Uncle Muhammed was so happy that Fayaaz finally found someone who could diss him back. I really liked them. They made me feel so welcome. I wish I could have met them along time ago. Aunty Aisha made popcorn and divine coffee.

Me: “Fayaaz, uhm do you have smarties?”

Fayaaz: “Yip one minute lemme get it”

I ate my popcorn with smarties like I did since I can remember. Uncle Muhammed was looking strangely at me.

Aunty Aisha: “You know, your dad and mum used to eat smarties wih popcorn”

Me: “Really?”

Uncle Muhammed: “Yes, they used to”

Me: “Oh my, look at the time its 1. I need to go home.

Aunty Aisha: “Fayaaz will drive behind you”

I hugged them and left with Fayaaz. He drove behind me and when we reached my house, he came in and we spoke for another hour. I could never know when he was serious. He kept saying that now he could never think of marrying me because I’m his cousin.

#72• Leeya. Part 10

The weekend had finally arrived, I was a nervous wreck. I didn’t know what to wear, first time I ever wished for a girl friend to help me decide. Finally I decided to go casual so I curled my hair slightly and wore a black lacy top with blue jeans and white All Stars.

Wanting to make the most of my time with my so called new family, I showed up at their doorstep two hours before expected. As I was going to text Fayaaz that I was outside the was opened by Uncle Muhammed’s happy face.

Uncle Muhammed: “It’s so nice to see you, I’m happy you can early, we were missing you”

Me blushing: “I missed you also”

He hugged me which made me blush even more.

We walked together into the house and I was met with a devine smell of coffee and waffles. I greeted Aunty Aisha and started helping her.

Aunty Aisha: “Fayaaz is still sleeping, you can go wake him up”

I went to his room, the door was slightly open so I knocked. When there was no answer I walked in. He looked so innocent sleeping. I sat next to him and pulled his eyes open. He just snorted and pulled the duvet around him tighter. I burst out laughing. His eyes opened and he smiled.

Fayaaz: “Wow this is a nice face to wake up to”

Me: “Sleepy head, come have breakfast”

Fayaaz: “Am I dreaming or are we really married?”

Me: “Very funny, Idiot!”

I jumped off the bed and went back to the kitchen, Fayaaz joined us a little later. I made myself comfortable in the living room with a cup of coffee and we joked and spoke while we ate the yummy waffles.

It all felt like a dream! How could it be that one day, I was all alone and the next I had a lovely family who adored me. But it wasn’t a dream it’s was real.

I was cut from my chain of thoughts when an old, thin yet beautiful lady greeted me. Is she really my grandmother? There goes my second thoughts again.

Aunty Shakira (Fayaaz’s granny) :”You look beautiful like someone I know”

Me softly: “Thank you”

Fayaaz: “Granny she is my friend, Leeya. Leeya, this is my grandmother”

I wanted to say more like our grandmother.
_______________________________

We all had an amazing lunch. Aunty Aisha had outdone herself. From making amazing lunch to the most divine desserts anyone could ask for.

We talked about everything and anything after having desserts, from jewelery, scarves to the best recipe for brownies and which ice cream should be put on top.

Uncle Muhammed: “Doesn’t she remind you a bit of Raeesa, mom?”

Granny: “Obviously, I know she’s none other than leeya”

Those words made me grasp in disbelief. How did she know?

Fayaaz: “How did u know, granny?”

Granny: “Oh come on, do you think I’m that stupid,  she just looks like Raeesa”

She stood up and hugged me tight with tears in her eyes. She asked me a lot of questions about what I was doing all these years and apologized over and over again for not being a good grandmother to me. I knew she had taken a liking to me..

At that moment I felt nostalgic, seeing Fayaaz talking to his parents and his parents showing love to him. Not having anyone when I needed them the most, I knew I couldn’t blame them. It made me want to cry. I quickly made a lame excuse and dashed home.

As I entered my house I felt tears streaming down my cheeks! How I wish my parents were still alive for me to have someone to take lessons and advice from. I sat on the couch and curled my legs tight under me. And whispered..

“Mom and dad,
I love you. I miss you so much and wish you were here right now. I want to wrap my arms around you and tell you how grateful I am for all the times I spent with you.
If only I could have five minutes with you to tell you all the things I need to say. I never got to tell you how much u mean to me. Or that you were the best parents, better than anyone could be.
The last time I spoked to you I wish I had known it would be the last. I would have held onto you tight and never have let go of you.
I’d tell u that I don’t think I can live without you, not even for a while.
I’d kiss your cheek and take your hand and tell you, its okay to go and tell u I’ll miss you more than you’ll ever know.
I promise to carry your contagious smile the same one that would light up a room the minute you walk in. I promise to be content, thankful for the air in my lungs.
I promise to make u proud
With all that I am, I LOVE YOU..”

My phone beeped and I jumped in shock. I quickly wiped my tears and opened the text. It was from Fayaaz..
What the hell???

____________________________

Thanks to Aaminah Sulieman for helping me with this post. 😚

#73• Leeya. Part 11

That night I had trouble sleeping. I kept thinking about the text from Fayaaz. It’s amazing how just a few words would have such an effect on me.
In the morning I woke from a few minute sleep, restless and tired. I reached for my phone under my pillow and opened the text. I had read right last night. It clearly read :- ‘My Family Loves You, Will You Marry Me?’??

Was he even serious? I could never know with him. I replied to the text :-

Me: ‘Are you serious?’

Fayaaz: ‘Ofcoz’

What??

Fayaaz: ‘…Not, don’t take everything so serious’

Me: ‘You idiot’

Fayaaz: ‘Be ready by 1 we going beach’

__________________________

After 12, I sat on my bed debating on what to wear, until finally I decided to go for black three quarters and a red Armani top. I applied a bit of lipgloss, grabbed my phone and sunglasses as I waited for Fayaaz to come.

I opened the door as soon as I heard a car coming into the driveway. Fayaaz got off the car holding o a bouquet of flowers and a picnic basket. I welcomed him inside and placed the flowers in a empty vase I had in the kitchen.

Me: “Wow, its gorgeous”

Fayaaz: “Just like you”

Me: “What?”

Fayaaz: “Nothing”

We went through the back and walked right onto the beach. I just love how my dad had planned this house. We left the basket and our shoes down on the sand then we walked down to the water’s edge and walked right where the waves broke. We were silent just listening to the waves crash.

Later we had the food Fayaaz had brought. We sat and spoke for a while and then we were silent again. I liked the silence it wasn’t an awkward silence it was peaceful and calming. I lay down and closed my eyes and drifted into a nap. Hours later I woke with a start and looked for Fayaaz, he stood infront of me blocking the sun from my face. I hadn’t realised the sun was about to touch the horizon. I quickly shifted my gaze to the sky and pulled Fayaaz to sit next to me.

The sunset is merely a prelude to the dawn, yet its majesty filled my mind with the most beautiful of dreams. A fierce orbit of light slowly sank beneath the horizon, and threads of light lingered in the sky, mingling with the rolling clouds, dyeing the heavens first orange, then red, then dark blue, until all that was left of the sunset was a chalky canvas, and then that melted away in turn as stygian darkness took over the sky. It was breathtakingly beautiful!

I turned to fayaaz and he held my hand. Shivers sent down my spine as he brought his lips right next to my ears and whispered.

Fayaaz: “You look soo scared right now”

Damn it, why was I thinking that he would give me a peck on the cheek? I knew my answer to his text, if only he hadn’t said he was joking. I looked everywhere but never at his eyes. I punched him softly.

Me: “Idiot!”

Fayaaz: “Oh why don’t you come up with another name for me?”

Before I could answer, his phone rang and he stood up and answered it. After a few yes and no, he ended the call and sat back down next to me.

Fayaaz: “Come on, my mum said I should bring you for supper and there’s someone who wants to meet you”

Me: “Who?”

Fayaaz: “It’s a surprise”

We walked back to the house and I changed into something else and then we left for Fayaaz’s house. I wonder who is it that wanted to meet me.

In the car I was quiet thinking who could it be? It must be someone that knew my parents. As we pulled into the driveway and got off the car I saw a beautiful girl running towards us with a huge smile and Fayaaz was smiling back with his arms open ready for a hug. He grabbed her and lifted her up and spun her around.

Who is she?

#74• Leeya. Part 12

I kept staring at this girl who was absolutely gorgeous. Was she Fayaaz’s girlfriend?
Before my mind made more assumptions Fayaaz introduced me to her.

Fayaaz: “Leeya, meet Zayana, my friend. Zayana meet Leeya, my cousin”

Zayana extended her hand with a huge smile plastered on her face I smiled back and shook her hand.

We walked in the house and a cute couple were standing by the kitchen door with a set of twins about 5 years old, holding onto their legs asking to play with their phones. Fayaaz introduced them as Zayana’s parents. As soon as the twins saw Zayana they ran to her and made her carry them. She carried both of them, gave them a kiss and out them down.

Zayana: “These are my brothers, Umar and Umayr”

Me: “Aww they adorable”

They were adorable dressed in white kurtas and Arab style scarfs on their heads.

We sat done for supper and as usual Aunty Aisha had prepared a divine meal. Umar and Umayr were sitting in between their parents and making funny faces at each other. As I took a sip of water I noticed that Zayana’s parents were staring at me. It was getting awkward.

Uncle Muhammed: “Leeya, this is Sabeeha and Suleiman. They were your parent’s friends”

Fayaaz: “Your parents hooked them up”

Uncle Muhammed smiling: “You can put it that way”

Zayana: “Mum this is thee Aunty Raeesa and Uncle Riyaad’s daughter?

Aunty Sabeeha: “Yes love”

She ran to me and flunged her hands around my arms taking me in a tight hug. I was still trying to compose myself before I returned her hug.

After supper we decided to just get to know each other more so we sat in Aunty Aisha’s room while Fayaaz, Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulieman sat in the lounge while the twins played with Aunty Sabeeha’s phone. Aunty Aisha took off her Niqab with a sigh.

Aunty Aisha: “Phew it’s hot”

Zayana: “How do you manage? I wanna wear Niqab but I’m kinda scared I won’t manage.”

Aunty Aisha: “I’m so used to it now, Allah makes it easy for me”

I just loved how she contributed everything to Allah’s doing, even the smallest of things. We spoke about my mum and the things they would do together. My mum seemed to be the type who would just want everyone to be happy although she had so much sadness in her own life. As I got to know Zayana and Aunty Sabeeha more they sounded like absolutely cool people. I loved their relationship. I wonder how my mum and I would have been.

Fayaaz came into the room, and quickly closed the door.

Fayaaz whispered: “I’m playing hide and seek with Umar and Umayr, don’t tell them I’m here”

He sat down next to me and teased Zayana mercilessly. A little while later. There was loud noises outside the room as the twins came running in. They saw Fayaaz and ran to him screaming we found you. He grabbed them, threw them on the bed and tickled them until they stared yelling. We going to pee. He hugged them and let them go. They ran away saying we tricked you.

Could he be anymore perfect? If I looked into the mirror right now, I swear there would be hearts in my eyes.

Aunty Aisha stood up.

Aunty Aisha: “Leeya, would you like to help me take out desert?”

Me: “Yes sure”

Zayana: “Can I come too?”

Aunty Sabeeha made big eyes at Zayana.

Zayana smirking: “Ohhhhh”

I looked at them confused and followed Aunty Aisha to the kitchen. I helped take out the desert from the fridge while Aunty Aisha took out spoons and a tray.

Aunty Aisha: “So, uhm did Fayaaz ask you anything?”

Me: “About?”

Aunty Aisha: “About marrying him?”

#75• Leeya. Part 13

I looked at her in shock for a few minutes. Then in a funny voice I never recognized I blurted.

Me: “He was serious?”

Aunty Aisha: “So he did ask you”

Me: “Yes, then he said he’s joking”

Aunty Aisha: “One minute, lemme call him here”

Me: “No, no please don’t”

Aunty Aisha: “You not interested?”

Me: “No, it’s not that…”

Aunty Aisha smiling: “So you are?”

Why was she being so pushy. I really needed air. I needed to just go outside and be alone.

Me: “Please give me a minute, I need to go outside for a while”

I walked towards the back door without waiting for a reply. As soon as I was outside, I ran towards a bench and sat down. Everything was happening soo fast. I couldn’t get married. I’m still in school and I always wanted to be a fashion designer. Where would we live? I don’t know how to cook! Fayaaz is my cousin, okay that’s not really important, it’s not like I grew up with him but still. What am I going to do??

I was broken out of my thoughts when I heard the bench creaking as someone sat down. I turned and saw it was Zayana.

Zayana: “Hey”

Me: “Hey”

Zayana: “Lemme guess, Aunty Aisha asked you the big question?”

Me: “You knew about it, that’s why the ‘ohh’ earlier”

Zayana: “Yeah Fayaaz has been talking about it for a few weeks now, he said he messaged you, but got scared and acted like he was joking”

Me: “Hmm you can never know whether he’s joking or serious”

Zayana: “You need to speak to him, he’s really serious about it”

Me: “He must have told you about the embarrassing thing I did when we just met?”

Zayana: “No, what?”

Me covering my face: “I tried to kiss him”

Zayana: “Wow, what?!”

Me: “Yeah and he didn’t speak to me for months after that”

Zayana: “No he never told me that and he tells me everything, from small, he always said the first girl he’ll kiss is when he gets married”

Me: “I’ve had boyfriends and we did things”

Zayana: “But do you like Fayaaz? As in you would-want-to-spend-the-rest-of-your-life-with kinda like?”

Me smiling: “Maybe”

Zayana: “So talk to him”

Me: “Okay, I’ll try”

Zayana: “Good, but right now I really want desert, so come on inside”

Me: “Come”

We went back into the kitchen. Aunty Aisha was there with a worried look on her face. When she saw me she rushed towards me and gave me a hug.

Aunty Aisha: “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to chase you away”

Me: “No, sorry for running away like that, you surprised me. I want to talk to Fayaaz about a few things. But it’s not a no.

Aunty Aisha: “Yay, Alhamdulillah”

I blushed and lowered my head. She pinched my cheeks.

Zayana and I went and offered Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulaiman desert. Then went and joined Aunty Sabeeha in the room.

_______________________

Later that night, everyone was tired so they decided to go and sleep. It was just Zayana, Fayaaz and I. We spoke for a while and then Zayana fell asleep so Fayaaz carried her and put her in the room. My heart started beating fast as I realized it would be only Fayaaz and I.

Fayaaz: “You want me to take you home now?

Me: “Yeah sure okay”

We drove in silence. When we reached my home he parked and switched the car off.

Fayaaz: “About the text…

Me: “I just wanted to say…

We laughed.

Fayaaz: “You first”

Me: “Okay, well I know you were serious in the text you sent me and my answer is yes”

Fayaaz looked at me surprised.

Fayaaz: “There’s a but coming right?”

Me: “I would love to marry you but there’s somethings you need to know about my past..”

Fayaaz: “I don’t want to know, I want to marry as you are, with everything that you have to offer. It’s your past, I want your present and your future”

#76• Leeya. Part 14

The alarm rang through my ears.
Great. It was Monday. I hated school. Then I remembered that I would spend most of the day with Fayaaz.
I got ready then ran down the stairs, quickly grabbed something to eat and headed straight out of the door.
Just as I came out of the house, I jumped to the sound of a horn. It was Fayaaz.

Fayaaz: “Get in, I know. I’m amazing”

Me: “You wish mister”

I made my way to the passenger seat and sat besides him. The car ride to school was filled with laughter. We came to stop as we reached the gate of our school. We got off and walked to class together. As I was walking to my class I bumped into the girl that wore 5inches of make up. She looked at us and rolled her eyes. Her name was Fatima.

Fatima: “Seriously, Fayaaz you could have done much better”

Fayaaz: “Better than you? Yes I did”

She shook her head and lifted her chin and walked past me purposely knocking into me.

Me: “What’s her problem?”

Fayaaz: “We were friends along time ago, she wanted more and I didn’t”

Me: “Who wouldn’t want more with you”

He tickled me as I begged him to stop. We reached our biology class and walked in.

Our bio teacher bellowed: “You are late, that means detention for you both.”

I glanced up the clock, it read 9:01. We were just one minute late, he couldn’t be serious.
I sighed and sat down next to Fayaaz.

Our bio teacher stopped me: “Leeya you won’t be sitting next to Fayaaz anymore, come and sit infront next to Fatima”

Oh no I officially hate school again.

I stood up and walked to the front and sat next to the person who hated me the most.

It was the worst thing ever. She kept kicking me under the table ‘by mistake’ and messed her coffee on my bag also ‘by mistake’. Finally the dom teacher saw what she was doing so changed my place again. He made me sit next to this quiet girl that always wore hijab to school. She was sweet, she made place for me and greeted me with a smile. She told me her name is Humaira.

My mind drifted to last night. Me and Fayaaz. I can’t believe I’m going to get married to the boy I love. It’s too good to be true. Is this really happening?
We still had to fix a date. We spoke about a few but he wanted it as soon as possible while I wanted to wait a while because a big wedding takes a while to prepare. Aunty Aisha told me about my mum’s wedding and how huge it was and how she hated it. We were so like in some ways and so different in others. I was definitely going to wear my mum’s dress. It was somewhere in the house I had to just look for it.

I was broken out of my thoughts by Humaira.

Humaira: “Uhm Fayaaz is calling you”

I realized the teacher had left the class so I looked towards him. He showed me his phone. Then I felt my phone vibrate. He texted me.

Fayaaz: ‘What you daydreaming about?’

Me blushing: ‘Our wedding’

Fayaaz: ‘I love when you blush’

Me: ‘Bleh I’m not’

Fayaaz: ‘We need to get married fast’

Me: ‘Why’

Fayaaz: ‘I need to be with you and beable to hold you and insist that we have to sit next to each other in school and hold hands’

Me blushing more: ‘Hmm soon’

Fayaaz: ‘So you agree next week?’

Me: ‘You crazy’

Fayaaz: ‘About you’

Humaira started talking to me so I stopped texting him

Humaira: “You from Cape Town right?”

We spoke a few general things, then she asked me about Fayaaz. I told her that we were planning to get married but he wanted it fast and I wanted to wait. She told me about how Nabi  صَلَّى اللّٰهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّم said something to the effect: You should not delay in 3 things, prayer when it is time for it, funeral when it is ready and the marriage of an unmarried woman when a suitable match is found.

I was amazed.

Me: “Do you go to a Madressah?”

Humaira: “Yes actually your mum and Aunty Sabeeha started it, Fayaaz’s mum teaches”

Me: “Wow I didn’t know”

Humaira: “You should join inshallah”

Me: “Definitely”

I texted Fayaaz.

Me: ‘We can make Nikaah following weekend’

Fayaaz: ‘Really?? What did Humaira do to you?’

Me: ‘Lol nothing’

Fayaaz: ‘As in not this weekend, the next?!?

Me: ‘Yes’

Fayaaz: ‘Alhamdulillah’

That weekend I took Zayana and Humaira with me to do some shopping. Aunty Aisha and Aunty Sabeeha would be sorting out the hall and the cook. I decided not to have it huge. But at a hall where someone would clean afterwards so it wouldn’t be too much work for the family. After the wedding we would have to go back to school so no honeymoon now. Fayaaz promised he had something planned for the holidays. I found my mum’s dress and shoe and it fitted perfectly.
Everything was perfect.

#77• Leeya. Part 15

This is post dedicated to Ridhwana Panchbhaya
________________________________

The next couple of days were a blur. I didn’t know what was happening. I just know I was getting married and everything was some how getting done. Fayaaz and I decided not to talk till our Nikaah. He said he wants to miss me.

School was hectic and plus trying to get things done was so tiring. Humaira was a blessing, she promised to do my hair and my hijab for my nikaah. And Zayana just wanted to spend the entire day with me. We had a few sleepovers and it was awesome. I never really had friends so this felt nice.

Just 3 days before my Nikaah, I was doing some last minute shopping alone. Humaira had something and Zayana was helping with the wedding preps.
I choose a few things and headed to the fitting rooms. Just as I finished trying on the things I came out and bumped into someone. It was Fatima!

Fatima: “Leeya”

Me: “Fatima”

Fatima: “Surprised to see you here”

Me: “Same here”

This was awkward.

Fatima: “Wedding shopping?”

Me: “Yeah”

Fatima: “You do know that Fayaaz is marrying you for your money?”

Me: “What?”

Fatima: “Yeah I couldn’t understand why he would marry a sorry orphan like you, until I spoke to him and he told me how he’s inlove with someone else. Just marrying you for a year so he could take over your parent’s business”

Me: “That’s not true”

Fatima: “Okay darling, whatever makes you sleep at night”

She walked away leaving me feeling confused and scared. I left the things and walked out of the shop. Could it be? No my uncle would never allow it. But how could I be sure? I mean they did say after we finish school, Fayaaz can go and help Aunty Sabeeha while he studies further. And he would be staying with me in my parents home. I shook my head and try to shake the thoughts away.

As soon as I got home I phoned Humaira. She picked up almost immediately.

Humaira: “Hey Slmz sweety. How’s the shopping going?”

Me: “Hey. It was okay, I didn’t get anything done”

Humaira: “You need me more than you know”

Me: “Funny”

Humaira: “This family is just leaving I’ll come over just now, should I pick up Zayana?”

I told her what happened my voice cracking abit.

Humaira: “Oh my, don’t worry about Fatima, nothing she ever says is true. But why don’t you phone him and find out?”

Me: “Okay let me do that”

I ended the call with Humaira and phoned Fayaaz.

Fayaaz: “Hey fiancé”

Me: “Hey”

Fayaaz: “What’s wrong? Weren’t we not supposed to speak?”

I decided to just ask him plain out.

Me: “I met Fatima at the shops and she said you marrying me for my parent’s money and you inlove with someone else”

He was quiet I could hear his gentle breathing and my heart raced.

Fayaaz: “Leeya, I have to go, speak to you later”

He cut the call and left me in surprise and tears.

I threw my phone onto the bed and sat on the floor with my head in my hands. I really need a mother. I heard a car pull into the driveway and my phone rang.

Humaira: “I’m outside”

I went down and opened for her. She looked at me and then grabbed me into a tight hug.

Humaira: “Oh sweety”

We sat in the lounge and I told her I phoned Fayaaz.

Humaira: “Oh no, give it some time and if he doesn’t call back I’ll come with you to his house, you can speak to them and see”

We spoke for hours while she showed me pictures of how she was thinking of doing my hair and hijab. I loved all of them, every time I felt excited about the wedding I remembered what happened and my smile became a little smaller.

Humaira decided to spend the night by me. Fayaaz didn’t phone back as yet. I hated this feeling. I tried sleeping but I was too restless. I kept checking my phone to make sure it wasn’t on silent.

Its became lighter and lighter outside but I still didn’t get a call from Fayaaz.

#78• Leeya. Part 16

I fell asleep for a short while and then woke up with a shock realizing everything was going wrong.

Fayaaz the first person I really trusted. I wasn’t sure who he was anymore.

I got out of bed and checked my phone. Nothing. I tried calling Zayana but she didn’t answer.

A lump formed in my throat as I wondered what was happening. I decided that if I don’t get a call from Fayaaz by tonight I’ll phone Uncle Muhammed. There was just 2 days left.

I went downstairs and found Humaira in the kitchen making waffles.

Humaira: “Salaam. Slept well?”

Me: “Not at all”

Humaira: “Oh I’m sure everything will be fine, don’t worry yourself so much before your nikaah”

Me: “Seriously I don’t even know if we going to get married anymore”

Humaira: “Oh don’t say that, it will all be okay”

Me: “Hope so inshallah”

Humaira: “I couldn’t find the ice cream”

I got off the chair and fetched the ice cream. We ate the waffles with Nutella and ice cream while speaking about the most random things.

Humaira took my mind off everything that was happening and made me laugh until I almost fell off the chair.

Later we decided to do a trail for my hijaab and hair. It looked amazing.

Humaira: “Oh sweety, you look stunning”

Me: “I can’t believe it”

Humaira: “You are so beautiful, Fayaaz is really lucky”

Me: “Jazakallah, let’s see about that”

Humaira: “Did you have friends in Cape Town?”

Me: “I had one, her name is Katherine. But we lost contact since I moved here”

Humaira’s phone rang, it was her mum telling her to come home. She told me to go with her but I decided not to.

Later I sat on my bed watching YouTube videos about the worst wedding dresses and wedding fails. I laughed so hard even though it wasn’t soo funny because I just wanted to cry.

Still no call or even a text from Fayaaz.

I wish I had gone with Humaira, I feel so alone and lost. I closed my eyes and let the tears flow. The lump in my throat got bigger and my heart literally hurt.

The worst part is not knowing what is happening and what am I supposed to do.

There was still so many things I needed to buy but I didn’t even know if I was getting married anymore.

My phone vibrated and I quickly unlocked it, checking who texted me.

It was a number I didn’t recognize.

‘Hey Leeya, its Fatima.
I decided to find out more, the girl Fayaaz is in love with is that quiet girl in our class that’s always wearing Hijaab, I think her name is Humaira. I hope for your sake you broke the engagement
Take care’

What the hell?!?!

#79• Leeya. Part 17

I didn’t believe a word of the message. I mean really? Humaira?

She wasn’t the type, I just knew it.

Then why did the lump get bigger? I felt as though I was going to choke to death.

Still no text or call from Fayaaz. I laid down on the bed and cried myself to sleep.

I slept for hours and dreamt about all sorts of things.

I woke to my alarm for Fajr and immediately checked my phone, I hadn’t put it on silent because I didn’t want to miss Fayaaz’s call. I narrowed my eyes at the light of the screen and unlocked it.

31 missed calls! They were from Fayaaz, Aunty Aisha and Uncle Muhammed.

Then I heard knocking no more like banging on the front door. What was going on?

I ran down the stairs and opened the door. It was Fayaaz. I immediately shout the door closed. He knocked again and I made him wait 5 minutes then I opened. He was sitting down on the floor and when I opened he stood up.

Fayaaz: “Leeya, I was worried about you”

That’s it, all the anger and tears just flew out and I couldn’t do anything to stop it.

Me: “You were worried about me! Since when? Since I didn’t answer your calls?? You weren’t worried this past 2 days when I waited around like an idiot for your call! Is this how it’s going to be when we married? Oh wait I don’t even know if we going to get married anymore! Where were you Fayaaz?! Huh? When I needed you the most you couldn’t even answer my calls or phone me back like you promised! …

I needed to take a breath, my legs felt weak and then it buckled below me and I sat down, my legs couldn’t carry me. I never felt so many emotions, I didn’t recognize myself. The tears just kept flowing, I must look so terrible right now but I had no control over it.

Fayaaz helped me up and sat with me down on the couch.

Fayaaz: “Leeya, let me explain please”

I just nodded my head.

He stood up and went to get me a glass of water. Then held it up for me to drink. I drank the water and immediately felt extremely embarrassed.

He sat next to me and explained why he hasn’t called me or what Fatima tried to do. He told me how Fatima’s father caused a problem at my dad’s company and how he then wanted to buy it out and tear it apart.

Fayaaz, his parents and Aunty Sabeeha had been working these past few days to sort everything out. Fatima was trying to break our engagement so that Fayaaz had no connection to my dad’s business thus making it easier for her father to take over.

Me: “I’m so sorry”

Fayaaz: “No I should have called you”

Me: “Yes you should have”

Fayaaz: “So Leeya, will you still marry me?”

Me smiling: “Yes, there’s no way I don’t want to have all the attention on me tomorrow”

#80• Leeya. Part 18

Fayaaz stayed till late and we spoke and I fell asleep for a while then woke up and we spoke more.

So much for our decision to not speak till our Nikaah.

He left after 1am and I checked my phone, I had a miss call from Humaira so I called her back and explained to her everything.

She sighed.

Humaira: “Shukr everything is fine”

Me: “Yes, I just kinda feel he should have phoned or his parents or someone”

Humaira: “Yes I wonder why, and what’s up with Zayana? She’s acting really weird”

Me: “I don’t know.. Humaira, do you think I’m making a mistake, maybe I’m rushing into this?”

Humaira: “I don’t know, something just doesn’t feel right”

Me: “But I’m making Nikaah tonight at 7pm I have just a few more hours”

Humaira: “What do you want to do?”

Me: “I really have no idea. Maybe I should go and speak to Uncle Muhammed and Aunty Aisha tomorrow morning and see what they say”

Humaira: “Would you like me to come with you?”

Me: “Yes I do”

Humaira: “Okay pick me up before you go”

Me: “Thanks so much”

We spoke for a while longer until my yawns became longer than few seconds and my eye-lids felt really heavy.

I went upstairs and looked at my mum’s wedding dress hanging out, ready for me to wear.

Aunty Aisha had told me how she didn’t want to get married but never regretted it once after she did.

I changed into my adorable onesie and lay on the bed. I wondered what it must have been like not knowing the man my mum would be spending her entire life with and sharing such a valuable part of her very being with. How suddenly they could have so much love, trust and care for each other.

I fell asleep with all these thoughts and woke for fajr feeling happy and peaceful. After reading salaah I went back to sleep and woke a few hours later.

I changed and made sure Humaira was up getting ready to come with me to speak to Uncle Muhammed and Aunty Aisha, then I went for a walk on the beach and smoked trying to rid of all the stress I was feeling. I couldn’t believe today was the day I was going to be getting married.
I drove to Humaira thinking about what to speak to Uncle Muhammed and Aunty Aisha.

#81• Leeya. Part 19

I picked up Humaira and we drove to Aunty Aisha talking about all the things that we needed to have done today. My Nikaah would be after Asr and then Fayaaz and I would spend alittle time together, then after maghrib a light supper for some close family and friends.

I parked in the driveway and we got off. I stood nervously by the door listening to the commotion that was going on inside.

Aunty aisha was screaming at Fayaaz to wake up and go to the barber. It was funny. There was so much of time left.

Me: “No point talking to her now she sounds stressed”.

Humaira rang the doorbell and gave me a sheepish smile.

Breath. Breath. Breath

And then the door opened and a smiling Aunty Aisha welcomed us. I walked in and introduced Aunty Aisha to Humaira. Aunty Aisha turned to look at Humaira and nodded.

Aunty Aisha: “Come in my dear, have a sit, would you like some coffee?”

Me : “That would be nice jazakallah, can I help you?”

Aunty Aisha: “Just come to the kitchen”

She made sure we were sitting and then started making the coffee. I helped take out the cups and spoons. As soon as we were done we sat down.

Aunty Aisha: “Something specific that brings you here so early on your wedding day?”

Me stuttering: “Uhmmm yeah.. It’s uhmm that th that..”

Humaira: “Why is Fatima after Leeya?”

Aunty Aisha took a deep breath: “Look my dear, when your parents passed away you the only one they had and so you inherited everything, except one, which your husband will inherit to take care of you and your kids one day inshallah”

Me: “So that will become my husbands. What does it have to do with her?”

Aunty Aisha: “It’s has a condition if you dont get married in the 3 years after you turn 18 that business will no longer be inherited by your husband but will have to be auctioned for half its value ”

I was shocked…

Aunty Aisha: “Fatima’s father was always after your father’s business. He will fight for it. I know it”

We were quiet and I was shocked.

Humaira: “So basically Fatima and her dad are just after money!”

Aunty Aisha: “Yes”

We spoke a little while longer and then I looked at the time and thought it was time to leave.

As if on que Zayana called to check up on me and informed me that she’ll come and help Humaira to get me ready in about an hour.

I quickly greeted my mother-in-law to be in the next 6 hours, dropped Humaira and headed home.

Just as I collapsed on my bed my phone beeped with a message from Fayyaaz but before I could even open it I fell into a deep sleep.
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Thanks to Aamina Suleman for helping with his post ?

#82• Leeya. Part 20

I woke to Humaira gently tapping me, trying to wake me up. I opened one eye and groaned.

Me: “I don’t want to wake up”

Humaira: “You have to, there’s only 2 hours for u to get ready!”

Me: “You lying”

Humaira: “Just wake up”

I closed my eyes and tried to fall asleep again but Humaira decided to sing me awake in the most annoying voice. I just felt so tired.
I sat up and Humaira immediately stopped singing.

Me in a sleepy voice: “Wow who knew someone so beautiful could sing so terribly”

Humaira laughing: “I got you to wake up”

We walked downstairs and she made me a sandwich. After I had eaten. I went for a bath. Humaira made me use all these lovely smelly bath crystals and creams. I felt wonderful.

When I came out of the bath and changed into a comfy sweatpants and top. Zayana had came. She hugged me tight. Then they started getting me ready.

Humaira did my hair, make up and hijab while Zayana talked non stop.

As soon as Humaira was done with me. I laid down on the bed and waited for them to get ready. I remembered that before I had fallen asleep my phone had beeped with a message from Fayaaz. I reached to get it but Zayana came into the room.

Zayana: “They here to ask your answer!”

Me: “What? Now?”

Zayana: “Yes, just put on an abaya and let them come”

I quickly threw on an abaya and waited for Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulaiman to come and ask me if I wanted to marry Fayaaz.

Aunty Sabeeha came in the room first. She hugged me tight and when she let go of me I noticed tears in her eyes.

I told myself I wouldn’t cry today but I could feel the lump forming in my throat. I blinked away my tears forcing myself not to think how would it be if my parents were here.

It was hard when I realised I would have no one to give my hand away in marriage as Uncle Muhammed was my only Mahram.

Aunty Sabeeha explained to me why they had come, saying that they would ask me if I accept Fayaaz in nikaah as my husband for a certain amount of Mahir (dowry).

Zayana called Humaira and they stood in the far corner of the room looking at me.

Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulaiman walked into the room. Uncle Muhammed walked up to me and gently kissed my forehead. It just got harder. It would have been my father that did that.

Uncle Muhammed whispered: “You look beautiful”

Uncle Sulaiman told me a few virtues of Nikaah and some advices. Then they asked me:

Do you accept Fayaaz in Nikaah?

I closed my eyes and I felt every organ in my body saying yes. My heart fluttered and I opened my mouth to say the word my heart already said.

Me: “Yes”

I couldn’t hold it in any longer. The tears flowed from my eyes as Aunty Sabeeha hugged me.

There was nothing more that I wanted than to have my parents with me to see who I had become. I knew they would have been proud of the woman I had become.

I stood up and Uncle Muhammed hugged me.

Uncle Muhammed: “I know I could never be your father. But from this day onward I will try everyday to be like a father to you”

He left with Uncle Sulaiman and Aunty Sabeeha. Zayana and Humaira hugged and congratulated me. Humaira went to switch the radio on, she set it to the Musjid so that we could hear the Nikaah.

Asr Athaan was called out so I went and prayed salaah. I sat on the prayer mat and asked Allah for a long life together filled with love and understanding between Fayaaz and I.

The radio went louder as the Imaam read out the Nikaah. He asked Fayaaz if he accepted me in Nikaah. Before he could even finished his sentence Fayaaz’s replied: “Yes”

I heard the soft murmur of the people laughing and I giggled shyly.

The Imaam then told Fayaaz to repeat after him:
نَكَحْتُهَا وَ قَبِلْتُهَا وَ زَوَّجْتُهَا
I married her, accepted her and took her as a wife.

Fayaaz repeated it happily while I smiled thinking how beautiful our religion is.
It made a man say: I married her, accepted her and took her as a wife all in the past tense. So that there is no doubt in what he would be saying.

Humaira and Zayana had got ready quickly and came to listen with me. They teased me about blushing. I slipped on my dress and heels then stood infront of the mirror. I looked happy. Happier than I’ve been years. Humaira redid some of my make up.

Humaira and Zayana left to see if anything needed to be done while I waited for Fayaaz. He was to come and spend alittle time with me then we would go to the hall together.

Finally being alone I reached for my phone and opened Fayaaz message. It read..

Leeya.
As today starts the day that will be the first of many days together. All the words in the world could not begin to describe how deeply inlove I am with you.
From today when we complete half our Deen till the day I leave to meet my Creator I promise to love you and to always be there for you, in moments of sadness and of happiness.
I give my hand in marriage to you today but from this day onward you have not only my hand but my heart.
I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you. I know it will be a life full of happiness, understanding and bliss. We may have some bad days but know now that even in those days my love for you will not decrease.
Fayaaz.

#83• Leeya. Part 21

Its been a week since I’m married and today was the first day I got to rest..
Yes the first!
Beacuse of the never ending invites. We both took off from school for the whole week thinking we’d just chill and relax.

I was laying on my tummy and going through my Instagram when the house phone rang. I answered it immediately thinking it was Fayaaz. It was Zayana

Zayana: “Salaamz..how are you?”

Me: “Wslm..I am okay. You?”

Zayana: “I am fine. I was thinking lets meet up tday..what do you think?”

Me: “Today?”

Zayana: “Yes we havent met in a week. Lets just catch up on with each other today. I want to know how your married life is going.”

I blushed

Me: “Okay sounds good..just tell me when and where. Ill be there”

Zayana: “Okay..cyah laters! Bye!”
And she hung up..

I got off the bed and went to the closet to choose clothes when I felt an arm wrapping around my waist.
FAYAAZ.

Water was dripping from his hands and he pulled me to his chest. He just came out of the shower n I could smell the manly fragrance of his soap frm his body.

Fayaaz whispering in my ears and tightening his hold on me.: “Whom are you going to meet today hmm?”

Me: “Zayanah she told me to meet her today.”

My breath hitched when he pushed my braided hair to the other side of my shoulder.

Fayaaz: “Come back home before evening okay? I want to take you somewhere”

He turned me around to face him.

Me confused: “Where”

Fayaaz smirked: “That’s for me to know and for you to find out.”

He smiled and leaned down to kiss me and that’s when I noticed he was standing with a towel around his waist.

He noticed my gaze then looked down and back at me giving me a crooked smile.

I blushed and quickly moved past him.

He laughed and a smile formed on my lips.

I met up with Zayana at a restaurant. We talked about everything we could possibly think about.
After a whole week I guess this is what I needed!!
I looked at the time and I realised it was almost evening.. I needed to get home.

I bid Zayana goodbye n headed home.
As soon as I reached home I dashed into the bathroom taking a good shower n came out wearing a bathrobe. I went inside the closet thinking what to wear. When nothing came into my mind I decided to ask Fayaaz so I texted him

Me ‘Hey, I was thinking where are you taking me?’

Fayaaz: ‘I already told you its for me to know n u to find out ;)’

Me: ‘But what should I wear ??’

Fayaaz: ‘Something fancy, gorgeous’

I searched for something, I wanted to wear red today. I found a red long evening dress, Humaira had picked out in one of our shopping sprees. I brushed my hair curling it and I wore golden ring to match my outfit. I applied mascara and red lipstick with gloss and wore a black stiletto.

It was already seven in the evening n they was no sign of Fayaaz. Worriedly I took out my phone to text him but stopped when I heard the key turning in the lock. It was no other than my handsome husband.

He took my hand and kissed every knuckle and pulled me into a tight hug.

Fayaaz: “You look beautiful babe”

I blushed.

The car ride was silent. We drove for about thirty minutes when the car came to a halt. I got off the car but immediately a hand was placed on my eyes making me blind.

Me: “Fayaaz! What are you doing?”

Fayaaz: “Shh keep your eyes closed. It’s a surprise for you. Do u trust me?”

I nodded.
He took his hand away but warned me not to open my eyes.

Fayaaz: “Come on just walk with me okay?”

We began to walk and I held his hand walking slowly with him.
Fayaaz whispered: “Almost there”

We stopped after a short while.

Fayaaz: “Ready?”

Me whispering: “Yes”

Fayaaz: “Okay now open your eyes”

I did only to gasp seeing the scenery. We were currently in a meadow where a table was decorated with candles and there were lights everywhere.
The placed looked extremely beautiful and I immediately smiled.

Fayaaz: “Do you like it?”

Me: “Yes, I love it”

He turned me around and pushed me towards the table

Fayaaz: “Lets enjoy”

He dragged my chair out for me.

Me: “Thank you”

He smiled and kissed my cheek then went to the other side sitting on his chair.

Fayaaz: “Now”

He clapped his hand and a waiter came towards us with glasses and juice. Fayaaz handed me my glass and took his. I smiled as I finished my juice. And Fayaaz came to me giving me his hand to take.

Relecuntly I took his hand and ge guided me to a plain space and spun me around. I gave him a confused look.

Fayaaz: “Since we don’t have music”

He held me by my waist and I placed my hands on his shoulder and held on other hand when he bagan to sway slowly I followed rhythmically.

I laughed when he swirled me, enjoying the moment. Then we sat back down by the table. Laughing

Me: “Fayaaz..I dont know what’s going on but I’m really enjoying it.”

Fayaaz: “You look amazing tonight”

I blushed and said a quiet: “Thank you”

Once again he clapped his hand and the waiter came back with a trolley. Aroma of freshly cooked food filled my nose and my mouth watered wanting to eat it.
The waiter placed the food infront of us and opened the leads. Variety of food was prepared and then only I knew how hungry I was. He served us our food and left. We began to eat our food talking about random things in between I even told him how my day went.

He smiled and would nod to me listening attentively to whatever I said. By the time I was done my stomach was fully filled.
I leaned in the chair. As soon as I opened my mouth to say something else he stood up from his chair amd came towards me.

He took my hands and made me stand and looked straight into my eyes.

Fayaaz: “I love you. I really do. I love you like the night loves the day, because the night takes in all the darkness just so that the day could shine through. I love you like the sea loves the moon, because when the moon lowers, the waters of the sea can’t help but rise and rage and storm. I love you like the rain loves the field, because the rain doesn’t mind falling just so the field could come to life. I love you like the trees loves the wind, because when the wind blows gently, the trees can’t help bt sway to its melody. I love you like the wolf loves the moon, because every night, the wolf is the only being that the wolf howls to. I love you like the candle loves the flame, because the candle doesn’t say a word and willingly melts for the flame. I love you like the thorn loves the rose,because the thorn wud do anything to protect the rose from all the undesired touches. But above all I love you like I love my heart, because I know it is what keeps me alive. But I’m sorry. All I got are peoms and lines and paragraphs and all I got to offer are words. But know when I tell you I love you, I love you with all my heart.”

I was shocked.. No amount of words would describe my love for him and my happiness. I felt like the whole zoo erupted in my stomach. A few tears even sprung out if my eyes.

“And I love you” I said pecking his lips.

Fayaaz capturing my lips: “I love you to infinity and beyond..
_______________
Thanks again to Aaminah Suleman for helping with this post.

#84• Leeya. Part 22

I don’t think we had a moment of peace after that time.
Our marriage is a mess and there’s no way we could ever work through this. We may be living in one house but our lives are far from one. He goes to work and comes home, eats on his own and does his own thing. We never speak to each other and never stay in the same room for more than 5 minutes.
For a huge part of my life I always felt I would never know happiness and then I moved and met Fayaaz and my whole life had a new meaning but now I know that happiness never last forever.

It all started a week after that magical moment with Fayaaz where I felt I could conquire the world. I remember every fine detail. It was only 2 weeks after we got married. We were in the lounge ready to leave for school already late. We were stressed about final exams but at the same time really excited that we’d be finishing school. The door bell rang and Fayaaz went to see who it was while I grabbed the car keys and walked towards the garage.
Fayaaz: “Leeya, its for you”

I walked past him to the front door and handed him the key. It was a man well dressed in a suit and shiny pointed shoes. He looked at me, introduced himself as Mr Rogers then handed me an envelop.
Mr Rogers: “Mrs Leeya, You have been served”
I looked at him in shock wondering what the hell he was talking about. Then her angry face flashed infront of me. And her voice sounded in my ears.

“You will never get away with this. I will make sure of it even if it takes me my whole life!!!!”
I shut my eyes tight wanting to drown away the memory. But it was still there when I opened my eyes. I thanked Mr Rogers and closed the door. I hurried into the kitchen and shoved the envelop into the grocery cupboard where Fayaaz would never see it. Then I walked towards the garage, I got into the car and smiled at Fayaaz.
Fayaaz: “What was that about?”
Me: “Oh nothing really, just something about the house”

#85• Leeya. Part 23
I drove home one day from work, my secret well hidden for years now. Our life as perfect as ever. Fayaaz had completely taken over my parent’s business while he allowed me to study whatever I wanted. I soon became a successful make up artist, travelling across the globe to do famous brides. It gave Fayaaz a chance away from work to come with me. Each time was amazing, a different honeymoon in itself. We became closer everyday and nothing could come between us as long as I kept my secret. I knew it would break him and I wasn’t prepared to gamble whether he’d accept me knowing what happened..

Everytime someone had contacted me from Mr Rogers office I just said I hadn’t received anything thus making them send it over and over again.
Finally I decided to just go ahead with the court case and pay her out. She readily accepted as the only reason she decided to report me was because her husband had finally died leaving absolutely nothing for her. She had no parents and non to support her.

Fayaaz had been scratching his head trying to think where so much money from the company had disappeared. I just tried to convince him that maybe we spent it on something and never felt the need to make a record of it. He finally believed me. I wondered how someone like him could end up with someone as wicked and evil as I.

I got home and noticed Fayaaz’s car in the driveway. Maybe he decided to come home early and surprise me. I walked into the house and waited to be surprised by the love of my life, each day with him was an adventure, each day better than the last. I looked forward to each day knowing that he’d be better than the last.

Me: “Babe where are you?”

Fayaaz: “In the kitchen”

Weird, he didn’t call me honey like he usually does.

I went into the kitchen and saw him sitting by the grocery cupboard.

Me: “What’s happening?”

Fayaaz held up an envelope. I didn’t recognize it.

Fayaaz: “What is this?”

I walked toward him, In the many years that we were married I never seen him like this, so closed, not showing any emotions at all. I took the envelope from him and looked at the writing. It hit me, this was the first summon from Mr Rogers. How had I forgotten it was here. My heart sunk. I thought I had destroyed every bit of evidence.

Fayaaz: “Kindly explain what that is, and why don’t I know anything about it”

I took his hands and made him sit by the dinning room table and then explain to him what had happened in Cape Town leading to this serve.
I explained to him that I was completely off track and I had an affair with a married man. His wife had soon found out..

And then I waited in fear and hope of Fayaaz’s reaction.

Fayaaz: “You disgust me”

His voice was cold, it was like I was a complete stranger to him. Every memory of our time together, meaning nothing to him. I shivered at the coldness of his voice hoping this was just a nightmare. He promised to love me whatever came our way. Did I not deserve his love now? Was I not his wife that he was supposed to accept and be there for? Did I not deserve a chance to show him how sorry I was? That that was a different part of my life where I was lost and didn’t know better? Didn’t know right from wrong?
The first amongst many lies that I told him..

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#85• Leeya. Part 23

I drove home one day from work, my secret well hidden for years now. Our life as perfect as ever. Fayaaz had completely taken over my parent’s business while he allowed me to study whatever I wanted. I soon became a successful fashion designer, travelling across the globe to do famous brides and matric dresses. It gave Fayaaz a chance away from work to come with me. Each time was amazing, a different honeymoon in itself. We became closer everyday and nothing could come between us as long as I kept my secret. I knew it would break him and I wasn’t prepared to gamble whether he’d accept me knowing what happened..

Everytime someone had contacted me from Mr Rogers office I just said I hadn’t received anything thus making them send it over and over again.
Finally I decided to just go ahead with the court case and pay her out. She readily accepted as the only reason she decided to report me was because her husband had finally died leaving absolutely nothing for her. She had no parents and non to support her.

Fayaaz had been scratching his head trying to think where so much money from the company had disappeared. I just tried to convince him that maybe we spent it on something and never felt the need to make a record of it. He finally believed me. I wondered how someone like him could end up with someone as wicked and evil as I.

I got home and noticed Fayaaz’s car in the driveway. Maybe he decided to come home early and surprise me. I walked into the house and waited to be surprised by the love of my life, each day with him was an adventure, each day better than the last. I looked forward to each day knowing that he’d be better than the last.

Me: “Babe where are you?”

Fayaaz: “In the kitchen”

Weird, he didn’t call me honey like he usually does.

I went into the kitchen and saw him sitting by the grocery cupboard.

Me: “What’s happening?”

Fayaaz held up an envelope. I didn’t recognize it.

Fayaaz: “What is this?”

I walked toward him, In the many years that we were married I never seen him like this, so closed, not showing any emotions at all. I took the envelope from him and looked at the writing. It hit me, this was the first summon from Mr Rogers. How had I forgotten it was here. My heart sunk. I thought I had destroyed every bit of evidence.

Fayaaz: “Kindly explain what that is, and why don’t I know anything about it”

I took his hands and made him sit by the dinning room table and then explain to him what had happened in Cape Town leading to this serve.
I explained to him that I was completely off track and I had an affair with a married man. His wife had soon found out..

And then I waited in fear and hope of Fayaaz’s reaction.

Fayaaz: “You disgust me”

His voice was cold, it was like I was a complete stranger to him. Every memory of our time together, meaning nothing to him. I shivered at the coldness of his voice hoping this was just a nightmare. He promised to love me whatever came our way. Did I not deserve his love now? Was I not his wife that he was supposed to accept and be there for? Did I not deserve a chance to show him how sorry I was? That that was a different part of my life where I was lost and didn’t know better? Didn’t know right from wrong?

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#84• Leeya. Part 22

​I don’t think we had a moment of peace after that time.
Our marriage is a mess and there’s no way we could ever work through this. We may be living in one house but our lives are far from one. He goes to work and comes home, eats on his own and does his own thing. We never speak to each other and never stay in the same room for more than 5 minutes. 
For a huge part of my life I always felt I would never know happiness and then I moved and met Fayaaz and my whole life had a new meaning but now I know that happiness never last forever. 

It all started a week after that magical moment with Fayaaz where I felt I could conquire the world. I remember every fine detail. It was only 2 weeks after we got married. We were in the lounge ready to leave for school already late. We were stressed about final exams but at the same time really excited that we’d be finishing school. The door bell rang and Fayaaz went to see who it was while I grabbed the car keys and walked towards the garage. 
Fayaaz: “Leeya, its for you”

I walked past him to the front door and handed him the key. It was a man well dressed in a suit and shiny pointed shoes. He looked at me, introduced himself as Mr Rogers then handed me an envelop.
Mr Rogers: “Mrs Leeya, You have been served”
I looked at him in shock wondering what the hell he was talking about. Then her angry face flashed infront of me. And her voice sounded in my ears. 

“You will never get away with this. I will make sure of it even if it takes me my whole life!!!!”
I shut my eyes tight wanting to drown away the memory. But it was still there when I opened my eyes. I thanked Mr Rogers and closed the door. I hurried into the kitchen and shoved the envelop into the grocery cupboard where Fayaaz would never see it. Then I walked towards the garage, I got into the car and smiled at Fayaaz. 
Fayaaz: “What was that about?”
Me: “Oh nothing really, just something about the house”
The first amongst many lies that I told him..

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#83• Leeya. Part 21

Its been a week since I’m married and today was the first day I got to rest..
Yes the first!
Beacuse of the never ending invites. We both took off from school for the whole week thinking we’d just chill and relax.

I was laying on my tummy and going through my Instagram when the house phone rang. I answered it immediately thinking it was Fayaaz. It was Zayana

Zayana: “Salaamz..how are you?”

Me: “Wslm..I am okay. You?”

Zayana: “I am fine. I was thinking lets meet up tday..what do you think?”

Me: “Today?”

Zayana: “Yes we havent met in a week. Lets just catch up on with each other today. I want to know how your married life is going.”

I blushed

Me: “Okay sounds good..just tell me when and where. Ill be there”

Zayana: “Okay..cyah laters! Bye!”
And she hung up..

I got off the bed and went to the closet to choose clothes when I felt an arm wrapping around my waist.
FAYAAZ.

Water was dripping from his hands and he pulled me to his chest. He just came out of the shower n I could smell the manly fragrance of his soap frm his body.

Fayaaz whispering in my ears and tightening his hold on me.: “Whom are you going to meet today hmm?”

Me: “Zayanah she told me to meet her today.”

My breath hitched when he pushed my braided hair to the other side of my shoulder.

Fayaaz: “Come back home before evening okay? I want to take you somewhere”

He turned me around to face him.

Me confused: “Where”

Fayaaz smirked: “That’s for me to know and for you to find out.”

He smiled and leaned down to kiss me and that’s when I noticed he was standing with a towel around his waist.

He noticed my gaze then looked down and back at me giving me a crooked smile.

I blushed and quickly moved past him.

He laughed and a smile formed on my lips.

I met up with Zayana at a restaurant. We talked about everything we could possibly think about.
After a whole week I guess this is what I needed!!
I looked at the time and I realised it was almost evening.. I needed to get home.

I bid Zayana goodbye n headed home.
As soon as I reached home I dashed into the bathroom taking a good shower n came out wearing a bathrobe. I went inside the closet thinking what to wear.  When nothing came into my mind I decided to ask Fayaaz so I texted him

Me ‘Hey, I was thinking where are you taking me?’

Fayaaz: ‘I already told you its for me to know n u to find out ;)’

Me: ‘But what should I wear 😐’

Fayaaz: ‘Something fancy, gorgeous’

I searched for something, I wanted to wear red today. I found a red long evening dress, Humaira had picked out in one of our shopping sprees. I brushed my hair curling it and I wore golden ring to match my outfit. I applied mascara and red lipstick with gloss and wore a black stiletto.

It was already seven in the evening n they was no sign of Fayaaz. Worriedly I took out my phone to text him but stopped when I heard the key turning in the lock. It was no other than my handsome husband.

He took my hand and kissed every knuckle and pulled me into a tight hug.

Fayaaz: “You look beautiful babe”

I blushed.

The car ride was silent. We drove for about thirty minutes when the car came to a halt. I got off the car but immediately a hand was placed on my eyes making me blind.

Me: “Fayaaz! What are you doing?”

Fayaaz: “Shh keep your eyes closed. It’s a surprise for you.  Do u trust me?” 

I nodded.
He took his hand away but warned me not to open my eyes.

Fayaaz: “Come on just walk with me okay?”

We began to walk and I held his hand walking slowly with him.
Fayaaz whispered: “Almost there”

We stopped after a short while.

Fayaaz: “Ready?”

Me whispering: “Yes”

Fayaaz: “Okay now open your eyes”

I did only to gasp seeing the scenery.  We were currently in a meadow where a table was decorated with candles and there were lights everywhere.
The placed looked extremely beautiful and I immediately smiled.

Fayaaz: “Do you like it?”

Me: “Yes, I love it”

He turned me around and pushed me towards the table

Fayaaz: “Lets enjoy” 

He dragged my chair out for me.

Me: “Thank you”

He smiled and kissed my cheek then went to the other side sitting on his chair.

Fayaaz: “Now”

He clapped his hand and a waiter came towards us with glasses and juice. Fayaaz handed me my glass and took his. I smiled as I finished my juice. And Fayaaz came to me giving me his hand to take.

Relecuntly I took his hand and ge guided me to a plain space and spun me around. I gave him a confused look.

Fayaaz: “Since we don’t have music”

He held me by my waist and I placed my hands on his shoulder and held on other hand when he bagan to sway slowly I followed rhythmically.

I laughed when he swirled me, enjoying the moment. Then we sat back down by the table. Laughing

Me: “Fayaaz..I dont know what’s going on but I’m really enjoying it.” 

Fayaaz: “You look amazing tonight”

I blushed and said a quiet: “Thank you”

Once again he clapped his hand and the waiter came back with a trolley. Aroma of freshly cooked food filled my nose and my mouth watered wanting to eat it.       
The waiter placed the food infront of us and opened the leads. Variety of food was prepared and then only I knew how hungry I was. He served us our food and left. We began to eat our food talking about random things in between I even told him how my day went.

He smiled and would nod to me listening attentively to whatever I said. By the time I was done my stomach was fully filled.
I leaned in the chair. As soon as I opened my mouth to say something else he stood up from his chair amd came towards me.

He took my hands and made me stand and looked straight into my eyes.

Fayaaz: “I love you. I really do. I love you like the night loves the day, because the night takes in all the darkness just so that the day could shine through. I love you like the sea loves the moon, because when the moon lowers, the waters of the sea can’t help but rise and rage and storm. I love you like the rain loves the field, because the rain doesn’t mind falling just so the field could come to life. I love you like the trees loves the wind, because when the wind blows gently, the trees can’t help bt sway to its melody. I love you like the wolf loves the moon, because every night, the wolf is the only being that the wolf howls to. I love you like the candle loves the flame, because the candle doesn’t say a word and willingly melts for the flame. I love you like the thorn loves the rose,because the thorn wud do anything to protect the rose from all the undesired touches. But above all I love you like I love my heart, because I know it is what keeps me alive.  But I’m sorry. All I got are peoms and lines and paragraphs and all I got to offer are words. But know when I tell you I love you, I love you with all my heart.” 

I was shocked.. No amount of words would describe my love for him and my happiness. I felt like the whole zoo erupted in my stomach. A few tears even sprung out if my eyes.

“And I love you” I said pecking his lips.

Fayaaz capturing my lips: “I love you to infinity and beyond..
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Thanks again to Aaminah Suleman for helping with this post.

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#82• Leeya. Part 20

I woke to Humaira gently tapping me, trying to wake me up. I opened one eye and groaned.

Me: “I don’t want to wake up”

Humaira: “You have to, there’s only 2 hours for u to get ready!”

Me: “You lying”

Humaira: “Just wake up”

I closed my eyes and tried to fall asleep again but Humaira decided to sing me awake in the most annoying voice. I just felt so tired.
I sat up and Humaira immediately stopped singing.

Me in a sleepy voice: “Wow who knew someone so beautiful could sing ao terribly”

Humaira laughing: “I got you to wake up”

We walked downstairs and she made me a sandwich. After I had eaten. I went for a bath. Humaira made me use all these lovely smelly bath crystals and creams. I felt wonderful.

When I came out of the bath and changed into a comfy sweatpants and top. Zayana had came. She hugged me tight. Then they started getting me ready.

Humaira did my hair, make up and hijab while Zayana talked non stop.

As soon as Humaira was done with me. I laid down on the bed and waited for them to get ready. I remembered that before I had fallen asleep my phone had beeped with a message from Fayaaz. I reached to get it but Zayana came into the room.

Zayana: “They here to ask your answer!”

Me: “What? Now?”

Zayana: “Yes, just put on an abaya and let them come”

I quickly threw on an abaya and waited for Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulaiman to come and ask me if I wanted to marry Fayaaz.

Aunty Sabeeha came in the room first. She hugged me tight and when she let go of me I noticed tears in her eyes.

I told myself I wouldn’t cry today but I could feel the lump forming in my throat. I blinked away my tears forcing myself not to think how would it be if my parents were here.

It was hard when I realised I would have no one to give my hand away in marriage as Uncle Muhammed was my only Mahram.

Aunty Sabeeha explained to me why they had come, saying that they would ask me if I accept Fayaaz in nikaah as my husband for a certain amount of Mahir (dowry).

Zayana called Humaira and they stood in the far corner of the room looking at me.

Uncle Muhammed and Uncle Sulaiman walked into the room. Uncle Muhammed walked up to me and gently kissed my forehead. It just got harder. It would have been my father that did that.

Uncle Muhammed whispered: “You look beautiful”

Uncle Sulaiman told me a few virtues of Nikaah and some advices. Then they asked me:

Do you accept Fayaaz in Nikaah?

I closed my eyes and I felt every organ in my body saying yes. My heart fluttered and I opened my mouth to say the word my heart already said.

Me: “Yes”

I couldn’t hold it in any longer. The tears flowed from my eyes as Aunty Sabeeha hugged me.

There was nothing more that I wanted than to have my parents with me to see who I had become. I knew they would have been proud of the woman I had become.

I stood up and Uncle Muhammed hugged me.

Uncle Muhammed: “I know I could never be your father. But from this day onward I will try everyday to be like a father to you”

He left with Uncle Sulaiman and Aunty Sabeeha. Zayana and Humaira hugged and congratulated me. Humaira went to switch the radio on, she set it to the Musjid so that we could hear the Nikaah. 

Asr Athaan was called out so I went and prayed salaah. I sat on the prayer mat and asked Allah for a long life together filled with love and understanding between Fayaaz and I.

The radio went louder as the Imaam read out the Nikaah. He asked Fayaaz if he accepted me in Nikaah. Before he could even finished his sentence Fayaaz’s replied: “Yes”

I heard the soft murmur of the people laughing and I giggled shyly.

The Imaam then told Fayaaz to repeat after him:
نَكَحْتُهَا وَ قَبِلْتُهَا وَ زَوَّجْتُهَا
I married her, accepted her and took her as a wife.

Fayaaz repeated it happily while I smiled thinking how beautiful our religion is.
It made a man say: I married her, accepted her and took her as a wife all in the past tense. So that there is no doubt in what he would be saying.

Humaira and Zayana had got ready quickly and came to listen with me. They teased me about blushing. I slipped on my dress and heels then stood infront of the mirror. I looked happy. Happier than I’ve been years. Humaira redid some of my make up.

Humaira and Zayana left to see if anything needed to be done while I waited for Fayaaz. He was to come and spend alittle time with me then we would go to the hall together.

Finally being alone I reached for my phone and opened Fayaaz message. It read..

Leeya.
As today starts the day that will be the first of many days together. All the words in the world could not begin to describe how deeply inlove I am with you.
From today when we complete half our Deen till the day I leave to meet my Creator I promise to love you and to always be there for you, in moments of sadness and of happiness.
I give my hand in marriage to you today but from this day onward you have not only my hand but my heart.
I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you. I know it will be a life full of happiness, understanding and bliss. We may have some bad days but know now that even in those days my love for you will not decrease.
Fayaaz.

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#81• Leeya. Part 19

I picked up Humaira and we drove to Aunty Aisha talking about all the things that we needed to have done today. My Nikaah would be after Asr and then Fayaaz and I would spend alittle time together, then after maghrib a light supper for some close family and friends.

I parked in the driveway and we got off.  I stood nervously by the door listening to the commotion that was going on inside.

Aunty aisha was screaming at Fayaaz to wake up and go to the barber. It was funny. There was so much of time left.

Me: “No point talking to her now she sounds stressed”.

Humaira rang the doorbell and gave me a sheepish smile.

Breath. Breath. Breath

And then the door opened and a smiling Aunty Aisha welcomed us. I walked in and introduced Aunty Aisha to Humaira. Aunty Aisha turned to look at Humaira and nodded.

Aunty Aisha: “Come in my dear, have a sit, would you like some coffee?”

Me : “That would be nice jazakallah, can I help you?”

Aunty Aisha: “Just come to the kitchen”

She made sure we were sitting and then started making the coffee. I helped take out the cups and spoons. As soon as we were done we sat down.

Aunty Aisha: “Something specific that brings you here so early on your wedding day?”

Me stuttering: “Uhmmm yeah.. It’s uhmm that th that..”

Humaira: “Why is Fatima after Leeya?”

Aunty Aisha took a deep breath: “Look my dear, when your parents passed away you the only one they had and so you inherited everything, except one, which your husband will inherit to take care of you and your kids one day inshallah”   
 
Me: “So that will become my husbands. What does it have to do with her?”

Aunty Aisha: “It’s has a condition if you dont get married in the 3 years after you turn 18 that business will no longer be inherited by your husband but will have to be auctioned for half its value ”

I was shocked…

Aunty Aisha: “Fatima’s father was always after your father’s business. He will fight for it. I know it”

We were quiet and I was shocked.

Humaira: “So basically Fatima and her dad are just after money!”

Aunty Aisha: “Yes”     

We spoke a little while longer and then I looked at the time and thought it was time to leave.

As if on que Zayana called to check up on me and informed me that she’ll come and help Humaira to get me ready in about an hour.

I quickly greeted my mother-in-law to be in the next 6 hours, dropped Humaira and headed home.

Just as I collapsed on my bed my phone beeped with a message from Fayyaaz but before I could even open it I fell into a deep sleep.
_______________________
Thanks to Aamina Suleman for helping with his post ☺

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