Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem
The biting cold whipped against her face as she sat apart from the rest of the class. Not by her choice, by their wish.
Ratted out earlier that morning for arriving late to class by her classmates, she had to stand outside on that Winter’s morning. Once again. As she had almost everyday for two years. Whereas other girls were ‘covered’ for, she was on the lower echelons of the class hierarchy.
Not rich,nor very pretty,neither possessed with a good dress sense and awkward. She ticked all the boxes of the kind of girl that became a social leper,fast. The same soaring grades and confident sass she possessed as a child, fast fell away as she turned into a teenager in this new learning environment.
Sitting in class one day, soon after she turned that painful age of 15, she stumbled over the words in a foreign language. Her teacher smirked at her and cracked a joke about her to the uproarious laughter of the rest of the class.
A spirit doesn’t break like glass, it doesn’t crash all at once and make a din like the end of something but instead it’s something like a scissors cutting trough fabric, it’s tsssk tsssk, dully ripping the fabric apart,slow and steady.
And that was how she got broken.
I wonder of girls who “have it all” are reigned in by their parents. Are they aware of the destruction their angels can do?
“Everyday,for four years.” She finished off,looking at me and then away. Wondering if I understood the weight of that pain.
“Learning became tough because I literally used to be sick at the thought of getting up everyday and going to school.”
I recalled her when she left that school, supported by her mother,surprisingly. She would talk very unclearly,mumble and look down, hide behind others and would smile very hesitatingly and rarely. She would be taken aback by a show of friendliness and be stilted in her response to it. He anger would be quick to rise when she was with her family and she would be given to heartache easily.
I looked at her sideways. “You’ve come along a long way, the friends you have now,wow…they’re amazing and your family has been there for you through thick and thin.”
She smiled. “Alhamdulilah.” Paused as she thought over it. The sturdy weight of an anchor that makes you belong and wings to fly is what genuine love and acceptance gives you. She now had it. “Alhamdulilah.”
“You can’t change what happened, but you can change today dear. You had something way more beautiful then than looks, it was Taqwa. That casting down of eyes, that daily reading of Quran, passionately covering yourself modestly, trying your hardest to be a good Muslim when most teens are running rampant, you really wanted to be one of the ‘youth who grew up in the obedience of Allah,subhanAllah!”
And then… then she lost her way later. I silently mused.
She looked distracted then and I knew where she was going,even before she said it. I wanted to end it before that wound opened up. Why him,why? Why not me? Did my opinion matter less than his?
“If only he knew…if only he knew…when I told him about this chapter of my life… that this was what cut me the worst… instead he…”