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The Wedding Saga- 3

And Allah said:

وَاعْتَصِمُوا بِحَبْلِ اللَّهِ جَمِيعًا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُوا وَاذْكُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ كُنتُمْ أَعْدَاءً فَأَلَّفَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِكُمْ فَأَصْبَحْتُم بِنِعْمَتِهِ إِخْوَانًا

Hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided. Remember the favor of Allah upon you, when you were enemies and he brought your hearts together and you became brothers by his favor.

Surat Ali Imran 3:103

The day I reached the venue, Zara was there to surprise me. Oh yes, she was not supposed to come due to ticket issues but lo! I remember the way I screamed when she opened the door. The entire building echoed with our euphony. 

It felt like home. Weddings that abide by the sunnah are so blessed Alhamdulillah. There was no chaos or confusion. Everything seemed smooth. Few people, less work to do, no caterers (just women arranging meals themselves), no headache of pleasing the Ladke wale (groom’s guests). It was the simplest wedding I had witnessed. Until I started dressing up, I didn’t feel like a bride. It just felt like a housewarming party with all friends. 

Jokes, laughter, packing, eating etc. Women were all with us irrespective of they being my family or the grooms. Everyone was equal. My sister in law (to-be) actually applied mehendi(henna) on my feet. 

There was a brief cultural function with some women singing hilarious folk songs and others clapping. Some of them denoted how bride moves to marital home, some were satires on bride and in laws relationships and others on how the groom is going to be tormented by his wife! 🙂 

End of the day my sisters and I were given a cosy room where we chit chatted and had our own private time. Something that is completely absent in weddings. Amidst the glamor, we easily forget the relationships. We prayed together, I didnt know when I’d be with all of them again. 

There was an intimate presentation they made for me. So many reminiscences of the journey we had covered together. It seemed we had come a long way but I know it has been such a short portion of the long way we are yet to cover.

The next day was my wedding day. We woke up early for fajr. Perhaps all of us felt the weight of the day. There was an eerie silence that morning. We prayed in jamaat. Following that we had a small istema. Each one narrated incidents, verses and stories of prophets & companions. Narrations that we could imbibe from. In the end our   ammijaan told us about what nikah means. Things that we think we know, but we need reminders all the time. About how I was going to complete half my deen, how it is the greatest sunnah, how my husband would be my  wali and my protector and how I would be the caretaker of his home, how men want respect and women want love… Changes that are hard to digest, but you know they are the truth and ways to seek the pleasure of our Maker. 

As the hour came closer, the realisation was sinking in. There was a stark difference in the day before and that day. Excitement started adulterating itself with nervousness. Oh that pit in the stomach. I don’t know how they arranged it all. Everything that I was to wear was spread neatly in the dressing room. Sana api was to dress me up. I took a shower and wore my wedding gown. 

People came and went as I was being prepared to be the bride. Finally I was getting the feel of the bride. That one day you’ll never forget all your life. That one day I’ll cherish forever in sha Allah. 


Words fail to express when I stared back at myself into the mirror. I wouldn’t recognise myself if I wasnt told that was me. They gasped. Just how I always dreamt to look. I now remember how most Indian brides look like painted ducks due to patchy make up. But alhamdulillah, this was perfect. I wished my groom could see me this way. 
It was time. I was asked if I accept. 

Qubool hai?


Qubool hai


I was soon showered with hugs and all of them came to me. How I wished for a moment that it could be just the 6 of us in the room, sitting and relishing the moment. I had thought I’d cry when this moment would come. But like every moment of my life where people are expected to cry, I again didn’t. 
I wanted to bury my face as each one came to hug. I wished they held on a bit longer. 

Shaikh gave a small and beautiful khutba following the nikah. The khutba was about how husband and wife are coolness to each others eyes. Two things which clinged to me were how after a stressful day, a cheerful wife is so important to a man and how the day household chores are strictly divided (that a b c d is your job and  w x y z is mine), the couple is also divided. 
The entire process was over within 30 minutes! Unbelievable 🙂 I was married.

 “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in the., and He has put between you affection and mercy.” (Surah Ar-Rum, 30:21)
It was time was rukhsati (departure). My luggage was loaded. And everyone was waiting for us in the basement. I had not clue how the entire thing was working like magic. Things were packed and loaded and I had no clue when. They were all always around me. 

And again, none of us cried. They were all standing there, taking care that I sit properly and of everything else till the last minute. I later got news from Ayesha that Afaaf cried like mad after I left. Seemed she got an madness attack or something of that sort. 😀

The next day we were back on WhatsApp. It took us a few days to get over what happened exactly. It gets smiles each time I think of it. We can’t wait for the next one to get married. This time I’ll be amongst the bridesmaids and see how this magical thing works behind the stage. ❤ 

Allah said:

وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَاءُ بَعْضٍ ۚ يَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَيُقِيمُونَ الصَّلَاةَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَيُطِيعُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ سَيَرْحَمُهُمُ اللَّهُ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

The believing men and believing women are allies of one another. They enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and establish prayer and give charity and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah will have mercy upon them, for Allah is Almighty and Wise.

Surat al-Tawba 9:71

The end





Photo credits- Pinterest, NatGeo.

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The Wedding Saga- Part 1

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

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Indians romance their weddings. There is everything that could make people from other parts of the world amazed. They are glamorous, festive, loud, happy, crowded and the people look dropdead gorgeous. Amidst all the cheer and merry, there is are heartbeats.

Yes… Heartbeats- of a bride lost in the crowd trying to see through her future, a mother recalling the day her baby fit into her arms just perfectly, a father failing to understand when his angel grew up and a sibling apprehensive of letting her go. They are there, yet they aren’t really there. Somewhere silently they get breathless. What next?

Yet, there was a wedding… A wedding where there was no glamour,  no pomp, no music, no crowd.. A wedding where there was no mother running around, no father taking care of the guest, no guest bossing for a drink, no sister dressing her up..

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This story is about that one wedding. The happiest wedding that could be. A wedding where there was the purest form of love- the love of sisters. Never had I thought I would be soaked in so much love. Never had I thought I could have a normal wedding. In my remotest dream, my marriage was supposed to be a simple marriage in a masjid with perhaps 5 people. Anything more than that would be a blessing. A wedding feast, a wedding gown, family, guests, gifts, merry or food- everything seemed impossible. But it happened.. It happened just as any bride’s dream. A wedding that was “just right”

If you are thinking I am an orphan.. then you need to rethink. I am blessed with two amazing souls as my parents. If you thought I am speaking of a grand wedding and another lavish affair, then let me help you revise… It was the tiniest wedding just how it should be in the sunnah.

So what made it so special? The Barakah.

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Barakah in happiness, barakah in piety, barakah in love. There was an overwhelm of emotions. The two days I will never forget. The two days my sisters came together from all over the country just to be with me. Only for me. The two days I felt love. Love for the sake of Allah subhana wa ta’ala.

Yes this wedding is about a bride and a groom who met, liked each other and married. But this one is more about sisters, who met, fell in love and got me married.

Who am I? Who are they? What’s the romance all about?…

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It Requires Less Than a Sorry

Today’s prompt is “The Humble Pie”. I have to write about an incident where I realised I was wrong and had to gulp the humble pie. I am sure when we are posed with such questions, most of us will instantly remember at least one incident that struck our conscience. For me, I had three in my mind instantly on reading the topic. But. . . they are too embarrassing for me to post here. So I sat digging my past, thinking about my humble pie days. Oh boy! it did take me a while to circle upon the one I am going to write about. Here we go.

 

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We are the sum of our experiences. The mistakes we do, the lessons we take and every time we strive for the right path- each moment frames us into what we are today. Am I serving an explanation for what I am going to tell you? Well, yes!

This incident dates back to 2002. I was 11 and in class five. My school organised an annual picnic for every class. Like any classroom, we were also divided into sub-class, species or genus. I mean, our batch of 60 was divided into smaller groups. The rule of the picnic was simple-

  1. Date was fixed
  2. We would be taken to some random location. For class five, it was usually some silly playground with a rink. The rink served more as a spot to sit and relax rather than to skate.
  3. We were to get our own games and meals. Tradionally, it was the potluck in every group. Girls decided who would get what and it was a grand affair!

 

The day did come. Needless to say, we were ecstatic. Everyone got everything as planned. Things were perfect and we could not wait. Finally our class-teacher, Sheila Ma’am (who also happened to be my mom’s friend) enters.

After the prayer session and being given the guidelines, we were soon geared to move. We stuck to our friends and started forming a queue. But, there popped an issue.

-“Amrita, who is with you?”

Silence. Suddenly the focus of the entire class shifted to that one girl sitting in the cornermost seat.

Amrita. I still do not know what was wrong with her. Perhaps she was dyslexic, spastic or something else that I don’t know. All I know is that she flunked to join us when we were in class four. I know she had flunked a year before that too. I know she was quiet, with spittle dripping from her mouth, two messy plaits and she couldn’t eat her own meal properly.

She was bigger than us, she was huge and different. I know nobody wanted to sit with her and I was one of them. In the three years that she was with us, I heard her speak only once. That is how I know how she sounded and I still remember her voice so clearly.

-“No”, she said. Her voice was heavy, a bit coarse too. Was it sad? I don’t know. I didn’t care.

-“Who is going to take Amrita with them?”, our teacher asked.

No points for guessing. Not me! Not anybody. Were we a ruthless class? Maybe.

Maybe we were too young. Maybe we were uncomfortable with her.

Nobody spoke a word. Shame.

-“if nobody volunteers, I will assign her to a group.”, she re-announced

Yes. A human had to be assigned.

Complete silence. The excitement had died. All the groups were praying hard that it isn’t us. Who wanted to take up a liability on a fun day? She had to be taken care of! Who would do that?

Just as I was praying hard, trying to look away from Sheila Ma’am, the inevitable happened. I caught her staring at me.

NO. My eyes told her. N – O.

So much for being your friend’s daughter!

Yes. Amrita was assigned to be with us. The other groups were relieved and the commotion restored. However, there was chaos in ours. We tried giving petty excuses.

-“We have exactly 22 chocolates for 22 girls ma’am. How will we give her?”

-“Share”, came the answer

I think Spriha gave up her chocolate that day. I didn’t. To make it worse, I was asked to accompany Amrita and make sure she hangs along with us. We were not allowed to leave her tagging behind.

Okay!

We finally gave up. We took her along. Reluctantly shared our food. Did not play with her. She kept sitting alone at a corner of our bedsheet and perhaps guarding our belongings. We mind our own business. I don’t remember being nice to her. Once the picnic was over, we didn’t care anymore.

Yes, it pains now to think about it. Children are harsh sometimes. At this moment, I wonder where she is. I wonder how she thinks about her childhood. We weren’t bullies, but I don’t know what we should be termed as.

Guilty? very.

Amrita made it to class six with us but not after that. She flunked again after that. I don’t know when I started thinking the other way round. I don’t know when my approach to the special ones changed.

From class six until the tenth, I was always elected the class monitor. We had four more girls in class seven who were different and had flunked to be with us- Ritu, Vanessa, Arunima and Varsha. As far as my memory goes, I loved them and they loved me. With one, I am still in touch. Other three flunked eventually and left school.

Was being kind to them a part of my role as the class head? Don’t know. I bumped into Vanessa once a few years ago and it was nothing less than warm. She remembered me and I remembered her. I look more like a girl now, she said.

I think I did change. I don’t know when. I think I am sorry but sometimes you don’t have the one around to make up. Maybe I never thought about her until today. Am I again explaining myself? Yes.

 

“Children aren’t coloring books. You don’t get to fill them with your favorite colors.” 

― Khaled Hosseini

 

Did you ever have your moment when you had to swallow the humble pie? Share with me below 🙂

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Humble Pie

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The Luckiest People

I want to start writing again. But, as my dear friend Shefs says, that writing is a habit and you have to write for at least ten minutes everyday to be in the flow. How right! It has been pretty long since I last wrote, and to merely give myself a push, I decided to take up The Daily Post‘s Daily Prompt. Today’s prompt is “The Luckiest People” and I have to write about the person I first encountered today.

If I had to talk about the word ‘encounter’ in the literal sense, it means I must write about someone I ‘met’ first today morning. Living at home means I meet my mom first everyday and then my dad. I guess writing about my mom would require more time and emotional investment, which is not now. So I would simply moderate the topic a bit, and speak about this girl with whom I first spoke to (after my mom) in the morning on WhatsApp.

Let us call her Gushra. I guess the only three people who are up at that hour of the day is Gushra, Shefs and me! So very often she is my brush buddy. She sends me creepy pics of her’s while brushing. Who does that?

So Tushra is Alhamdulillah one friend very close to my heart. This morning the star topic was her dad. He is my new hero. She told me that her dad is black belt in Karate and can kill any man in 30 seconds! Whoaaaaaaaa…. There was this one time when someone abused her grandfather before her dad. What followed was her dad went down, flung the person and knocked him down within 15 seconds. All this to a man half his age! I couldn’t stop laughing. Amazing!

No wonder his kids are so fit, including Mushra. She looks petite of only 45kgs at 5’3″ but is strong enough to floor a man down. Thats my girl.

There are few things common in all my close friends. I guess these are pretty much the criteria for me to allow anyone close to me. As follows:

  1. They have an amazing sense of humour. They witty and intelligent. It is impossible that someone reads our convos or hears us talking and she won’t laugh hard for minutes together
  2. They are sportive. Okay, no ego and no drama allowed. We never have someone crying over their sorrows and other sympathising. Perhaps they know too well that if they speak for more than 5 lines about how sad their life is, others might make her the butt of joke. Additionally, they can laugh at themselves!
  3. They are girls. I don’t know why, I have always had a thing for girls.

 

Pushra excels in these! Especially the third criteria. She does take a while to get some stuffs, because of which I call her dimwit 😛 She has the mental age of 14, but that is okay. She is getting better each day.

It is so hard to write a good paragraph about your own friend, I have a feeling of writing an essay on “My Best Friend” In kindergarten. Especially when you know Lushra will be reading it… and then my dad will be reading it. Then he is going to come and ask me who Rushra is and every detail about her. Perhaps object to being friends with her anymore.

So Zushra, be prepared. When you miss me next, open this post and cry your eyes out. I wrote about you!!

 

 

😛

 

 

PS- to all those who are worried about the man her dad knocked down, he didn’t die. He was only smashed and bled a little. Very much alive now.

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The Luckiest People

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Hibernation!

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Hope Nursery e-Book

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This Ramadhan we are fundraising for Hope Nursery in Turkey. Based on the Turkish-Syrian border, this nursery caters for 70 children and is in dire need of support to keep the  facility open. We are proud to launch this 125 page e-book packed full of:

Goals listDaily checklist Daily recipe Action of the day Facts on Sunnah foods Personal development essays

Purchase your copy for just£4.99! All profit will be donated straight to the nursery via Doctor’s Worldwide.

 

Read more about the e-book here. We also welcome donations at:

www.justgiving.com/Hopenursery

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