PART NINETY ONE

PART NINETY ONE

 
Today Faheema called to see how things were going, Shuaib had to go to China for a business trip so she was feeling a bit down. Her mother-in-law told her to go to my mum, maybe she will feel better. She said she doesn’t want to give my mum any trouble, she is just recovering from the wedding. 
 
I told Faheema about Yaseen and Raeesa, she said we should speak to my parents. My mum will have to just give in, she can’t have things done according to her plan. After my talk with Faheema, Ahmed and I went to bed, we sat and spoke about our day at work. I told him about my boss and all the gift. 
 
Only when we spoke about it, did I remember that I had gifts to open. I quickly went to the car and got them, Ahmed and I sat and opened them. We received some nice gifts, a towel set with our names engraved on them, Ahmed got a nice business set, I got a kitchen aid and a beautiful chain set. 
 
This morning Yaseen looked very tensed, we told him that he should go back home and we would come the weekend to sort things out. While at work I decided to call Raeesa and invite her over for a meal. I think it would be good to hear what she has to say without the pressure of her parents or Yaseen. 
 
I invited her for supper by me tomorrow because I don’t want Yaseen around when she comes. It would be disrespectful to her parents. I went home early because Yaseen was leaving back to go home. I told him not to worry and not to tell my parents anything. His course was finish and it was no use he staying around and moping. 
 
When Ahmed came home I told him that I invited Raeesa over. He was happy that I did that. He said it would give us a chance to know what she wants. After we had supper, I prepared for tomorrow’s supper, Ahmed went for Esha namaaz and when he came back I was done. 
 
We sat and watched a movie and then got into bed. Ahmed asked me what I decided about asking his parents to move to Jo’burg and also about us all moving in together. I did speak to Faheema about it but didn’t tell Ahmed. I told him that I am still thinking about it. 
 
Faheema made me think that if my mother-in-law hates me now, imagine how difficult she will make my life if I lived with her. I would probably have to leave work so I can take care of the household duties. Faheema suggested maybe just making them move to Jo’burg. I didn’t know what to do as yet. 
 
Yaseen called and said that he thought about it and if Raeesa is siding with her parents she will never be his. I told him to be patient and let things happen on it’s own. it’s no use taking the wrong steps because of anger and by rushing. I told Ahmed that we would have to leave Friday to my parents because Yaseen is very impatient. 
 
Today I didn’t go back for my nap after Fajr, I went to the kitchen to prepare for supper. I left Ahmed to sleep, then I made lunch for us and kept everything ready for breakfast. I quickly went into the shower and got ready for work by that time Ahmed was awake. We had breakfast and then we both left for work. 
 
Ahmed suggested at breakfast that I get myself a driver, I’m so use to driving myself, although I wouldn’t complain when the traffic is hectic. I told him I’ll think about it because I like to drive. At work we had a short meeting with the staff before my boss left. He gave us more responsibilities and got some new accounts. 
 
Work is going to get more hectic for me, I don’t know if I can handle all that pressure and taking care of a household. I will have to plan my time out properly. I had a meeting not far from home so I left the office and went for the meeting, I only finished at 5pm so I went straight home. 
 
I set the table and made a salad quickly, then Ahmed came home and not long after Raeesa came. At first it was a bit weird because we’ve only met her once but then as we spoke we eased up a bit.  After supper Ahmed asked Raeesa what she wants in life, does she see a future with Yaseen and will she give us sometime to sort things out. 
 
She told us that her father is not willing to wait too long, he doesn’t want people speaking bad about his daughter. He wants Yaseen and Raeesa to do things right and not date and then break up and her name is spoilt. I must say I agree with her father. Ahmed told Raeesa that Ahmed and I would go the next day to speak to her parents. 
 
She was nervous at first,she told us rather not to. Ahmed explained to her why he wanted to meet her parents and it would make them feel better, they wouldn’t think Yaseen is fooling around. After Raeesa left I called Yaseen and told him that things went well and we plan on meeting her parents. 
 
Ahmed and I cleaned up and then went to the room. We got into bed and then discussed what we were going to tell Raeesa’s parents. I am so happy that Ahmed is helping my brother and I. I wouldn’t really know what to do. Ahmed told me that he would have to go to China the next week and he would be gone for two weeks. 
 
I don’t want him to go, I know it’s business and he has to go but my heart is not ready to send him away from me. I said to him it’s okay, I understand, because I didn’t want him to feel bad and cancel his deal. I tossed and turned before I fell asleep, I couldn’t stop thinking of being apart from Ahmed. 
 
I woke up early today, I couldn’t really sleep. Ahmed asked me in the morning if I was okay, I told him I was but I really wasn’t. I firstly had to sort out Yaseens problem and now this had to happen. How am I going to deal with all this, it’s so much pressure. 
 
Anyways when I got to work I called Faheema and told her our plan to meet raeesas parents and then we would speak to my parents. I called Ziyaad also and told him to keep an eye on Yaseen. I didn’t want him spoiling things, it would just make matters worst.
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PART NINETY

PART NINETY

 
The week went by so fast, it was already time to go back to South Africa. We landed at 6 in the morning, Yaseen was waiting for us. I was so excited to see my brother. When we got home Yaseen sat for a little bit and then said he would see us later.
He didn’t stay by our place because he felt a bit awkward now that it’s no longer only my place so he booked out at a nearby bnb. Ahmed told him nonsense and told him that it’s still my place and he doesn’t have to feel uncomfortable or like his in the way. Ahmed made him book out and fetch his stuff from the bnb. 
 
Uncle Abdullah and his family came over to see us, Aunty Rubina made lunch for us. It was nice having them around, they really take care of us. I needed sleep so after lunch I got into bed while Ahmed and Yaseen watched a soccer match. Ahmed and Yaseen had a very good talk about Raeesa( Yaseens girlfriend). 
 
I was glad that they were getting along and that Yaseen confided in Ahmed, he took him like a big brother. Ahmed decided we should go out for supper since we both go back to work the next day. We decided to go to Jimmy’s in fordsburg, I always like their steak and their garlic bread.
 
When we got back home I ironed Ahmeds clothes for the next day. He had a early morning meeting so I had to be awake very early. After ironing Ahmed and I went straight to bed. It was a bit weird having someone else in the same bed in my house. It took a bit getting use to when we were in Phuket. 
 
I was telling Ahmed we need to get a queen sized bed, I got a double and we fight for space because Ahmed ends up sleeping on to me. I guess it takes some getting use to, especially if you’ve been independent and living on your own. You sometimes feel it’s overwhelming. 
 
In the morning I quickly packed our lunch and then made breakfast for Ahmed. I don’t eat so early in the morning, I usually only eat when I get to work. Ahmed got ready, had breakfast and then left. My domestic came and she was shocked to see Ahmed there so early in the morning. 
 
I told her what happened, she was so upset that she couldn’t be there because Ahmed always teased her and told her we will take her to clean the dishes at our wedding. I told her to iron all his clothes, that’s one thing I hate doing is ironing. 
 
When I got to work everyone kept saying that our boss was coming and he has a surprise for us. I was away so I didn’t know what it was about. The amount of work I had pending, shew when I looked at the files on my table I knew I had a hectic week ahead. I don’t know how Ahmed would feel but I need to take some of it home. 
 
Anyways I went straight to work and started sorting things out. It looks like the staff here had a blast when I was away, there was no boss and no me there. My boss arrived at 10am with a bouquet of flowers and food and gifts. I thought it was someone’s birthday. 
 
He called all of us to the board room, he had everything laid nicely out and told us to sit. Then he said he has an important announcement to make, he then called me to the front and told everyone that I got married. At first I felt a bit embarrassed, in front of everyone he just announced that I got married. 
 
He threw a small surprise party for me and gave me the bouquet and gifts. I was so surprised, it was really sweet of him to do such a thing, to come all the way just to throw me a surprise party. After the party we all got back to work, I can’t afford to loose another minute. 
 
The whole day went in me sorting out all the files that were on my desk, I didn’t even have breakfast or lunch. Ahmed tried calling a few times, I didn’t even notice that’s how busy I was. When I got home I had to still cook, there was no vegetables or anything at home so I quickly went to the checkers down the road from work. 
 
When I got home Ahmed was already home, he finished early today so he came home. I went to freshen up and then got busy in the kitchen. Ahmed came to help me, he cut up all the veggies and put that to steam while I cooked the chicken and made a sauce to go with the veggies,it was actually fun.
 
Yaseen was not home as yet, I was getting worried, I tried calling him but he never answered. Ahmed and I sat to have supper and Yaseen just walked. He looked so worried, I asked him what happened and he said he just wants to be alone for a little bit. 
 
After supper I sent Ahmed with supper to Yaseens room, maybe he would tell Ahmed what happened. Ahmed left the food in the room but came back with no answers. I was worried about my brother, I’ve never seen him like this before. Ahmed said that I should give him some space and that he would tell us when his ready. 
 
I brought some files home to finish my work so that it’s not such a big work load Ahmed was okay with it but I could see he wanted to spend sometime with me. I didn’t get to finish all my work but I did get most of it done. Yaseen came to the lounge to tell us what happened. 
 
He said that after his talk with Ahmed he knew that he had to decide where he and Raeesa were going with their relationship. He said that she told him to speak to her parents, so he went with her to meet her parents. Apparently her mother is okay with everything and understands that he has to wait until Ziyaad gets married.
 
Her father said that if he wants to see her again then it will be once he has a marriage proposal and he doesn’t approve of them dating. I can understand that, my father wanted Ahmed and I to get engaged as soon as possible. It just makes the girls name bad if they not and people see them.
 
Yaseen was down because Raeesa agreed with her father and he didn’t know if my parents agree. He knows my mum is very strict when it comes to choosing a daughter-in-law. I told Yaseen not to stress, we were going to my parents the weekend so Ahmed and I would talk to them. 
 
I know my mum will want Ziyaad to first find someone but if it has to be Yaseen first she has to accept it. You can’t say 100% that Ziyaad would find someone soon. I think Yaseen is afraid of loosing Raeesa, her father might not want to wait too long. 

PART EIGHTY NINE

PART EIGHTY NINE

 
I went to the lounge and Ahmed was sitting with a box in his hand. I asked him what it was but he said I should open it and see for myself. I opened the box and found two tickets to Thailand. I was absolutely excited, I didn’t expect to go anywhere for honeymoon. 
 
Because of the short time we have I never even expected a honeymoon and I know everything was so last minute it would be impossible to plan something. We were leaving in the morning, we had to leave early because it’s a 11 hour 40minute fight to Phuket. I still had to pack and call my parents and tell them.
 
Ahmed and I went to the room to pack our bag. Then I called my parents and told them about our honeymoon plans. My mum said that Yaseen was coming to Jo’burg so he would pick us up from the airport on sunday. By the time we sorted out all out things, it was late and with the travelling we both were very tired. 
 
I set the alarm for Fajr, We were leaving at 6am to the airport. Ahmed arranged with his driver to pick us up. After fajr we got ready to leave, it was too early for both of us to have breakfast so we just left like that Aunty Rubina and them all came to see us before we left. 
 
I told Rizwana to call Safiah and tell her everything, with all the rush I forgot to contact her. On our way to the airport Ahmed remembered he didn’t lock his apartment. We called his assistant to go and check on his place. When we got to the airport we checked in and then went to have breakfast. Our flight was at 9am so we had to wait a little. 
 
While we were waiting Ahmed and I spoke about maybe getting his family to move to Jo’burg. It would be better for us and them as well, Ahmeds work is now more in Jo’burg and he hardly gets to spend time with his family. We thinking of maybe getting one big house and we all stay together. 
 
He is the only son and it is his duty to look after his parents, it shouldn’t be that when the daughters get married and his parents are old and sickly that the son-in-law should take care of them. How bad would that look for me as a wife. Well we said we would decide when we got back. 
 
We boarded the plane at 8:30am, I was nervous, I’ve been in a plane before but I always get nervous. It was a very long flight, 12 hours of sitting in one place. Ahmed is use to it because he travels a lot, he slept for a bit, I couldn’t move in that time because Ahmed held my hand while he was asleep. 
 
We finally reached by the time we got to the resort it was pass supper and most of the places were closed. We asked the hotel manager if he could arrange for some snacks for us. We had milk and biscuits before we showered and went to bed. We only woke up at 11am, half the day had gone by already. 
 
We got ready and went to the restaurant to have breakfast. Then we walked around the resort, which is called Grand Mercure. They have great facilities at the resort so our first day wasn’t really wasted, also everything is in walking space of the resort so we went for a little shopping.
 
After supper we decided to just relax in our room. We sat and spoke about the wedding, I asked Ahmed when his mother came and how did they manage to convince her. He said that his Dadi did everything, she convinced his mother or rather threatened her by saying that if she doesn’t agree to our marriage then his Dadi won’t accept her as part of the family. 
 
That is blackmailing but it worked so I guess it’s not that bad, sad parts is she came just before he could come to the hall. So she wasn’t around when the nikkah was taking place. After our talk we decided to look at things we could do in the area. We planned the next few days, we got three more days because Saturday afternoon we leaving back. 
 
We decided to do shopping today, we saw some lovely things yesterday and we know exactly what we want. The resort has a fitness center so we both decided to go for a work out before breakfast, after breakfast we got ready and went for our shopping trip. We wanted to get something for everyone at home. 
 
After shopping we went back to the resort and had lunch, went for a swim and then relaxed at the beach. I sat and read a book while Ahmed took a 30 minute nap before we went back to the resort. We showered and got ready for supper, the resort was having a entertainment night for couples so we thought it would be a good idea to check it out. 
 
It was a good night, we had a choice for entertainment, we could choose from a theatrical play with a picnic or music concert. So we went for the play and the picnic. It was a Shakespeare play with a twist, they added a lot of Thailand into the play. 
 
After the play we decided to just sit on the grass and look at the stars, it was a very nice evening, it was not too hot, there was a nice cool breeze. We met a couple Kevin and Natasha also from South Africa, they were in Phuket on a vacation. They were going to tour around tomorrow so they asked us to join them. Ahmed said we would be but I was not so keen on going with people we just met. 
 
Anyways we got back to the room and I told Ahmed I don’t feel so comfortable going with total strangers. He said I worry too much and we will have fun. I guess I didn’t have much of a choice and I didn’t want to spoil things for him so I agreed to go. 
 
In the morning we met Kevin and Natasha for breakfast and then went on our tour.  First we went to The Escape Hunt, Kevin and Natasha had booked for it already, it’s a puzzle challenge and you have to solve the puzzle, it was quite fun actually. 
 
Then we went to the Phuket FantaSea show, which was also nice and then we had to look for a place for lunch. I thought Ahmed and I were the only two who were gonna starve but Natasha only eats halaal so it was a problem we three had to share but to our surprise there are actually a lot of halaal places. 
 
Luckily we had a guide so he took us to the Potang Mosque area where there are a few halaal places. Then we went to a few other places and went back to the resort. It was around 6pm when we got back and we were so stuffed from trying all the different food that we didn’t end up having supper. 
 
I was absolutely exhausted, I just wanted to sit in front to the tv and relax. Ahmed had a few messages so he had to attend to those. He tried not to do business on our honeymoon but it was a very important deal so I told him he could attend to that. 

PART EIGHTY EIGHT

PART EIGHTY EIGHT

 
I woke up this morning for Fajr, prayed my namaaz and then sat to read Quraan. Afterwards I went downstairs, everyone was already awake and already busy working in the kitchen. My mum was busy preparing for breakfast, Faheema was making tea for everyone. 
 
After I had my tea my mum told me to go back to bed because I had a long day ahead and I would get tired. I woke up at 9am in such a shock like I was late for something. I quickly went to shower and went to see what everyone was doing. My Dadi was the only one at home, everyone had gone to the hall to set up things there. 
 
My dad went to the florist and Ziyaad and Yaseen went to set up the sound system. I was so hungry, lucky there were leftovers from breakfast so I made that hot and made coffee for myself. I had nothing to do so I watched tv, what else could I do. All my appointments were for the afternoon and I was told not to go out of the house.
 
I don’t even know what Ahmed and his family are doing, I know after lunch at 2pm he has a appointment at the salon. I was told not to go there, that how I know. Everyone came home just before lunch, after lunch my cousin came to do my makeup and hair. I wear a scarf so she didn’t have to do much with my hair. 
 
I made her wait. I wasn’t dressing so early and waiting. Uncle Ashraf was coming with the other witnesses to ask for my consent just 30 minutes before the nikkah. Nikkah is at 6pm so I didn’t have to rush. I changed at 4pm and then made my cousin start with the make up. 
 
We finished just before 5:30pm, everyone was already here, I sat in the lounge waiting for them to come. Everyone was just clicking away while I sat there smiling. My jaws were already starting to pain, imagine smiling the rest of the night. Uncle Ashraf finally came, they asked for my consent and then I had to sign the certificate.
Then the men all went to the mosque for the nikkah and the ladies heard everything on the receiver. After the nikkah the men came back and then everything was a rush, everyone left the house besides Ziyaad, Yaseen and myself, they were taking me to the hall.
I had to wait until Faheema called, obviously I couldn’t be there before the guests. After an hour we got the call that we could leave. When I got there all my cousins and Faheema and Shuaib were waiting outside for me. When I got off the car they all started cheering.
Then Ziyaad walked me in, after a few minutes Ahmed arrived. He stood at the door trying to look at me on the stage. I could see the huge smile on his face, I couldn’t really see anything else because of the people standing in front of him. He walked in with a few of his cousins behind him.
When he came on the stage, we greeted each other, we sat and then he said he has something to tell me. He pointed out at the crowd and showed me that his mother and sisters were here. I was elated, I couldn’t have asked for anything more, I was so relieved. 
 
His sisters came up to change the bouquet, I was so emotional I cried when they greeted me, I thanked them. We exchanged rings after that and then took photos while the guest ate. Ahmed looked absolutely stunning, I kept telling him that, I was so nervous. 
 
After we ate I told Ahmed that we should go greet his grandparents, my dadi and our parents. Our grandparents wouldn’t make it up the stage especially Ahmeds Dadi. I first went to his grandparents, before we could get to his Dadi she was already crying. She said that she is so happy and it’s the best day of her life. 
 
I couldn’t wait to greet Aunty Shenaaz, Ahmed started talking to some people so I left him and went to Aunty Shenaaz, she apologized to me for everything they did. She said that she just wants her sons happiness and if it’s with me she is ready to accept that. 
 
I know it’s not going to be easy, I will have to work and make my place in their family. Even if they at first are a bit difficult I will have to overlook their faults and accept them for who they are. Obviously with all these problems things haven’t started on a good note so it’s normal for that bitterness to be there. 
 
After the wedding we went to my house, for the bridal farewell, we call it bhidai. Then Ahmed and I will go to the hotel that my brothers booked a little out of town. Everyone greeted me and we cried buckets but no one could beat my mum and Faheema. They even cried more then me. 
 
Ahmeds family stayed by my mum and had refreshments, Ahmed and I left to the hotel. I was extremely exhausted, we really had a very busy day. Ahmeds family were all leaving on Sunday, even his parents. So we were having breakfast and lunch with my family and then we also were leaving back to Jo’burg.  
 
In the morning we went over to Zinats place to see Ahmeds family before they all left. Then we went to my mums for breakfast, it was nice to just relax at mums. I was glad that things turned out the way it did. I got to spend the day after my wedding with my family, not many woman can say that.
 
Zinat and Sameer joined us for lunch, my mum made all Ahmeds favourite dishes, already spoiling her son-in-law. My cousins and uncles and aunties all came to greet us before we left. I can’t believe that Ahmed and I are finally married.
Although it was all rushed, the circumstances that forced us to do a rushed wedding and also our families dreams and our dreams were not fulfilled but we had a good wedding. With the grace of the Almighty we manage to pull it off and I guess it was meant to be the way it was.
We left around 3pm, we decided to first go to Ahmeds apartment to get his clothing and other things that he needed and then go home. I had to make place for Ahmed and all his things in the house. Ahmed said that we shouldn’t rush, he doesn’t mind keeping his stuff in the guest room until I get time to make place in our room. 
 
Aunty Rubina invited us over for supper, after supper I decided to go home and sort out some space for Ahmed in the cupboard and the rest I would do tomorrow. I couldn’t let him live from a separate room, it would be awkward. Ahmed said he has a surprise for me but he didn’t say what. He wanted me to go to the lounge and then he would tell or show me.  

PART EIGHTY SEVEN

PART EIGHTY SEVEN

 
Everything went off very well last night, it was really tiring because we finished quite late. My mum phoned Ahmed last night to see how things were going there and he also said that it went well. Today we also have a lot to do. it’s a short day being Jummah. 
 
Everyone will be coming to us for lunch today so my mums already started in the kitchen. We have a cook preparing the food for today and tomorrow but my mum won’t be at ease if she doesn’t do half the things. Everything was such a rush and so much things had to be done.
I was ordered not to enter the kitchen or do any work but I couldn’t watch everyone doing things and just sit. I knew that my mum gave Shuaib to do the parcels so I went to help him. He did try to stop me but after begging he finally allowed me to help him, can you imagine making 7 parcels by himself.
Anyways we finished with the parcels before Jummah, we had to just make the ring tray and then we were done. Shuaib said he would make that when he got back from namaaz. After Jummah everyone came for lunch and then everyone started preparing for the mendhi function.
We were having it in the tent so everyone was busy there. We decided to set tables for supper in the garage. I was ordered to sit inside so I played with the kids inside and sat with the oldies. My Dadi was telling me about her time when she got married. How my Dadi and Dada  had a arranged marriage.
They didn’t even meet each other, the only time my Dadi saw my Dada was after their nikkah at the reception. They didn’t even speak to each other or anything. When she went to her inlaws she didn’t know what they liked but luckily she had a elder sister-in-law who told her about everyone in the house.
They also stayed in one house all her brother-in-laws, their families and her mother-in-law and father-in-law. They had a small house, it was just three bedrooms and they had to share the space. There also all had different duties, everyone had to do their duties and her mother-in-law would check when they were done. 
 
So glad things are not like that anymore. Imagine living such a strict life, your husband had no say his mother would give all the instructions and make all the decisions. You had to follow orders, sat when they said, stand when they said. I don’t think I would manage a life like that. I can handle staying with the inlaws but with some space and freedom. 
 
Well after supper we all went to get dressed, Faheema got me a special outfit for tonight. I had a green and red anarkali suit, it was all done up with silver and red bead work. I usually don’t wear such fancy outfits but she forced me so I had to. I was made to sit on a lounge chair. 
 
We had a lady come put mendhi on for me, my cousins danced and everyone said a little something about me. It was so overwhelming,  my mum said the most loving things about me growing up, how I brought happiness into our house. Although Faheema and Ziyaad were around, they were not as naughty as I was. 
 
I was really spoilt when I was younger, my dad says I’m still spoilt because I always get my way. I would do things they wouldn’t even think of. My dad’s speech was also very touching. He spoke about my school days and how he and I would go to the movies without telling anyone. 
 
My mum would ground me and my favourite movie was releasing so dad use to take me. My Dadi said that I always had a special place in her heart, I always took good care of her, I always made her feel special. Faheema said she always wanted a sister, she would tell my mum when Ziyaad was born that they should return him and get her a sister. 
 
She was just two when Ziyaad was born so she didn’t know how babies came. My Dadi was the one who told her you buy babies at the shop.  Ziyaad said that I was always his special sister because I was the smallest. He loved to act big and protect me, he would never let anyone come near me, my cousins had to play with me from far. 
 
Yaseen was the most special, he even cried when he was giving his speech. He spoke about how I was always there for him, he never missed out because before Faheema gave him pocket money for school and when she got married I carried on and gave him pocket money for college. 
 
He said how he could always come to me whenever he had a problem, I would never ask him questions or take him wrong and if he did wrong I never misunderstood him. He would always steal my school stationery, everyday he would loose his pen but I never complained. He said some really sweet and touching things.
 
After all the speeches, some of Ahmeds family came over. His aunties put mendhi on my hand as part of tradition. After that we served tea and a whole lot of goodies. It was getting late so my Dadi told me to go in the house. I’m not allowed to be out of the house from midnight.
 
Ahmeds family were still around so I greeted them all and then went upstairs to my room. I haven’t spoken to Ahmed since yesterday. I so much wanted to speak to him, I sent Faeez to call Zinat so I could get her to check if he is okay. I made her put the phone on loud speaker so I could hear his voice.
 
He was okay, he knew I was listening so he made like his speaking directly to me. He can’t wait for tomorrow, he just wants to see me and he mentioned that the next time we see each other we will be husband and wife. Just a few more hours, the excitement is there, the butterflies and stress as well. 
 
I think we both feeling the same, I can only imagine how Ahmed is going to feel tomorrow when he has to go to the mosque for nikkah, you always wait for your mum to be by you when you leave and when you return. At the reception as well, everyone will ask where is the grooms mother and what will people say. 
 
I guess there’s not much we can do but make dua that his mother’s heart softens and she comes to be part of her sons nikkah. I at this moment don’t care if she doesn’t accept me all I’m praying for is for her to be there for Ahmed. I went to bed just after midnight. 
 
There was still some of the family around but I had a hectic day ahead and needed the sleep. It was just my family so I didn’t really worry. In the first place I found it so difficult to fall asleep with the mendhi on my hands and legs. That packets around are so annoying and make so much noise. 

PART EIGHTY SIX

PART EIGHTY SIX

 
My mum called us just after 4pm, Ahmed Dada and Dadi were here and they wanted to see us. I became nervous all of a sudden, I couldn’t breath, I felt like something was stuck in my throat. I’ve never felt this way before or at least not all at once, I was a mess. 
 
Ahmed told me that his grandparents were very calm people. Worldly things never mattered to them. He said they are very close to him, he is their only grandson so he has always been their favourite. I hope they like me, I don’t think I can handle anymore people disliking me. 
 
When we walked in the house Ahmeds Dadi told my mum, my grandson is here. She didn’t even see him, we didn’t make any noise or even speak but she knew. I went to his Dada first and greeted him, then I went to his Dadi and greeted her. She was getting up to hug me but I stopped her, I went on my knees and hugged her. 
 
Ahmeds Dadi called him to sit next to her, she told him so you finally manage to convince your mother. She asked where Aunty Shenaaz and the girls. Uncle Ashraf told her that they all don’t approve and he told them all the things they did to me. Ahmeds Dadi apologized to my parents and I, I felt bad that she was apologizing, my mum did say that they don’t need to apologize.
 
After all the introductions and discussions everyone started to get along very well. I was glad that Ahmeds grandparents really took a liking towards me. I made tea for everyone and then Ahmeds Grandparents wanted to rest a bit so my mum gave them the guest room downstairs. 
 
My dad decided that they should stay at our house but Ahmeds Dada said that they should rather stay with Ahmed. I understand why they feel that way. He needs their support now more then ever. I took Ahmed grandparents to their room and made sure they were comfortable. 
 
Faheema and Shuaib went to see his Aunty in town so I didn’t get to see them from the morning. They came home just after Asr, the kids were all asleep, I missed them so much. When Ahmeds grandparents came out of the room we had supper and then tea and desserts. 
 
My last night seeing Ahmed until the nikkah is over. I don’t know how will I manage because I’ve gotten so use to him being around. I guess I will because everyone will be around. Ahmeds uncles and aunties and their families will all be arriving tomorrow. I will only meet them on Friday and Saturday.
 
I went upstairs after Ahmed and his family left. He called me when he got to Zinats, he was already missing me. He was very emotional and expressed a lot of his feeling for me. He was happy that his grandparents were supporting him and said that he only needed their support.
 
After I got off the call we texted each other until I fell asleep. Today there is so much to do, we have the ladies khatam in the afternoon and then Zikr at night. My mum was as usual panicking and getting annoyed at all of us. Faheema is the only one who can handle my mum when she gets all hyper.
 
We kept all the dishes one side that we were going to use. Faheema, Zinat and myself got the plates with biscuits and cakes ready. My Aunty made milkshake and my cousins were bringing savouries. The khatam was for 3pm so we had enough time. We had lunch and then we set the table and chairs in the tent. 
 
I made Zinat call Ahmed and ask if he and his family were okay and if his other family had arrived. Most of his family had arrived, he was just waiting for two of his cousins. His grandparents were doing okay, he took them to do some shopping. 
 
Uncle Ashraf stayed at home, Ahmed said that he called home and tried to convince Aunty Shenaaz to agree. He said that she said she is hurt that her son has agreed to get married without her approval. She has no problem with me but her son has hurt her. Uncle Ashraf asked her to think how much she has hurt Ahmed and I. 
 
I told Zinat to tell Ahmed to call his mother and sort things out with her. We can’t start our life together by hurting people, Ahmeds Dadi told him she would sort things out and that we shouldn’t feel bad because we are not wrong. Ahmed and his family were also having Zikr, so my mum helped them out with organising everything. 
 
Anyways the ladies started to arrive for the khatam, so we started although my mum was not yet home. Faheema and my Dadi handled things so it wasn’t so bad. I was glad that all our family were here although it was short notice, it made it more special.
 
My mum came back just before the dua was read. I was glad she was helping Ahmed like a mother would. He messaged me and told me that today he didn’t feel like his mother was missing because my mum was there all the time for him. He didn’t have to worry about anything. 
 
I made a lot of dua today that Aunty Shenaaz ends up changing her mind and comes to be by her sons side when he needs her the most. Aunty Rubina was sorting out our house in Jo’burg, she cleaned up and changed the bedding and stuff like that. 
 
I am so lucky to have such good people around me, who are ready to help without expecting anything in return. In times like these you always need your friends and family around. Having that helping hand really takes off some of the stress from the family. 
 
After supper we set up for Zikr in the sitting room, all the ladies sat in the tent. I started to feel the pressure now, everyone was around, it felt like a wedding house. It knocked me that soon I will be married, yes to a wonderful person that I love and that loves me but at the same time I would be leaving my parents. 
 
I know I am already away from home but still it was my home I was only away for work. Now I will be away because I am married. The sacrifices a woman has to make, I can’t take all the credit for the sacrifices because Ahmed is sacrificing a lot for me. 
 
I haven’t asked him to but circumstances  have forced him to do so and I can’t ignore the sacrifices he’s making. I just want him to be happy, I do have a fear that if things don’t get sorted out they could get worst and I could be blamed for it but I have to have faith and trust in Ahmed. 

PART EIGHTY FIVE

PART EIGHTY FIVE

 
I got to the hotel and went up to their room. Aunty Shenaaz let me in which was a start, I told her what was happening and why I was there. I asked her to please forgive us both, we have no intention of hurting them. I asked her if her only reason for not agreeing to us getting married was that my family are not multi millionaires.
 
If that cannot be put behind and for her to see Ahmeds happiness. Aunty Shenaaz has a lot of pride so for her to agree that she is wrong is very difficult. I told her that she didn’t have to answer my questions, she can just think about what I am saying. Sumaya and Kausar were also there so I asked them to do the same. 
 
I told them that I had come there to see if I could change their minds because in all our happiness we missing something. Everyone is busy preparing but we need them there as well. I made Aunty Shenaaz know that I would never take her place. I am there as a wife not as a mother. 
 
I also made it clear that I’ve tried and now it’s all up to them, if they don’t come then we will know that they still don’t agree and we will have to accept that they will always be missing in our lives. Ahmed kept calling me on my cellphone so I left the hotel and went back home. 
 
Ahmed asked where I went I told him I went out for some work. Everything was decided. Today is Monday and we have just a few days to do everything. My mum is already stressing, I told my parents that we don’t have to have anything big. 
 
Just my father’s brother and sisters and their families and my mums brothers and sisters and their families, our neighbours and friends. Ahmed stayed by us for the night and was going to stay at Zinats the next day. Uncle Ashraf arranged for Aunty Shenaaz and the girls to go back home. He wanted to stay until the wedding.
 
In the morning Aunty Shenaaz and the girls left, Uncle Ashraf came to our house to help wherever he could. He called all their family and invited whoever he wanted to. Ahmeds Dadi and Dada were happy that Ahmed was getting married. They wanted to come the same day.  
 
We arranged for flight tickets for them and I had Sakina pick them up at the airport. Imraan said he would bring them so we didn’t have to worry about fetching them. My mums family all were arriving on Friday. After breakfast I went with Faheema to go do some shopping.
 
We went to look for a outfit for the reception and I needed to get some other things. My cousin Zunaid and his wife went to do all the shopping for the functions. My dad went to sort out things with the caterer and my mum found a cook but she needed to meet with them.
 
When we got back, then only Ahmed and my brothers went to do their shopping. By the time they got back it was already lunch time. After lunch we sat in the lounge discussing what else needed to be done. My dad decided to not open shop for this week and concentrate on the wedding since we had so much to do. 
 
Zinat and Sameer came back from their holiday. They were more excited then us, they wanted to do everything. I told Zinat that Ahmed and his family would stay at her house. All the functions they want to have they can have there. Zinat and Sameer said that they would go stay with Zinats parents for that time. 
 
I told them they could stay by us also but they were okay with staying by Zinats parents. My parents only came back home just before supper. They sorted things out with the caterers and the cook. My dad said that we would have Zikr on Thursday, mendhi on Friday and the nikkah on Saturday after maghrib. 
 
It would give our family that are coming from far some time. Uncle Ashraf and my dad were discussing a few things. I don’t know what because they sat outside and told us not to disturb them. My mum was busy in the kitchen so I went to help her. She was worried about Ahmed and I. 
 
I asked her a few times about it but she didn’t say anything. She just kept saying that I will always be welcome in this house. I shouldn’t feel like I don’t have a home to go to. Ahmed wanted to speak to me for one last time alone, before he goes to Zinat and then doesn’t see me or have contact for those few days. 
 
I told him that he will still have Zinat to use as a means to contact me. We did the same when Zinat and Sameer got married. Anyways after supper Ahmed and Uncle Ashraf left to go to Zinat. I went upstairs to my room while everyone sat in the lounge talking about the wedding. 
 
I wish I could change things, it just doesn’t feel right to do things this way. I feel like I’m depriving someone of something. I don’t know how to ignore the fact that his mother doesn’t approve of our marriage. It’s making me feel Iike I’m doing something wrong and I need to get this feeling out. 
 
I need to be alone for a while, I need to think if we are doing the right thing. Imagine how Ahmed felt today he didn’t have his families support when he was doing his shopping. Am I being selfish, I didn’t want to worry anyone with my problems so I didn’t tell anyone.  
 
I went to bed early, I had a long few days ahead and needed all the rest I could get. Ahmed called but I was already asleep so he sent me a message. He noticed I was quiet so he wanted to know if there was something wrong. He couldn’t sleep because he was too excited. 
 
He kept sending me pictures of us with cute quotes on them. I just love him too bits, he is so cute and such a darling. So my family put a curfew that from Thursday we can’t meet or call each other. Ahmed decided that we would spend today together. So we went out for breakfast to mugg and bean. 
 
It was so nice because it’s a week day and the place was not crowded. It was actually very quiet so we sat longer and spoke about us and how we want our future to be. We then went to all the places I usually go to, like the park and the dam. We decided to have a picnic for lunch so we went quickly to the deli and got some goodies. 
 
Then we went to the dam, we relaxed and had some time to ourselves. The place was empty and we were basically the only ones we could see around. It was nice to be together without any interruptions.