Part 151- To Forgive Is To Set Free

As narrated by Aara:

Everything in life does not go exactly the way in which we plan it to…and tonight was a perfect example of that. Everything happens for a reason and ultimately Allah is the best of planners.

best of planners

I looked at on both his knees, holding the ring in his hand.

Rejection. I knew that feeling all too well.

Everyone stood where they were standing…in shock…no one moved. For a change, even Ziyaad was silent.

Laeeka stepped up and started to walk down the pathway, presumably to talk to Maariah when Immy finally spoke…

Immy: Laeeka no

Laeeka: but Immy..

Immy: (shaking his head) I don’t want to pressurise her…don’t go after her

Riza: Immy…I’m so sorry

Immy: if you guys don’t mind, I’d like to be alone for a while please

Riza walked over to Immy and placed his hand reassuringly on his shoulder, stood there for a few seconds and walked away. No words right now, would be right enough for Immy…

We walked away silently and when we were out of Immy’s sight everyone expressed their thoughts verbally.

Arshad: I cannot believe it! I mean fine I know that they weren’t together but…no man not this!

Laeeka: I can’t understand…I feel so horrible for Immy! Why is Maariah holding back like this? This is not her at all!

Ziyaad: there has to be a reason we all don’t know…anyway I’ll see you all tomorrow. If there’s anything that I can do…I’m just a phonecall away

And with that, Ziyaad and Ebie left. Sahal,Riza and Arshad went off to their rooms leaving the rest of us behind.

Me: Zoheb walk with me?

And he held my hand without question and both of us walked towards the garden at the front, until we had reached the garden swing. This was where Zoheb had first opened up to me…the day on the beach, my family braai and those priceless moments thereafter.

With his arm around me, I rested my head on his chest. And we sat there in silence for over an hour. It’s true, sometimes you can have the best conversation with someone you love without saying a word. This was my second favourite place in the world, the first being my musallah.
I don’t think even Zoheb knew what he meant to me. I closed my eyes and listened to the sound of his heart beating as he held me close to him. Happiness, love, to be cared for, to care, to be so close to someone, to feel their heart beating close to yours…to be removed from the reality of this world and its harshness. To be enclosed in a world where you write your own story, where you live with reckless abandon, a world where there is no need for a single tear or no want for any forgiveness because in this world you cannot be hurt.

listen to your heart

My heart was filled with gratitude to my Creator for giving me this small world that I could call my own, for helping me to realise what I needed to do and for making me understand that I needed to do it now…

When we had gotten back into the house, everyone was asleep. Zoheb kissed me on my forehead and we retreated to our rooms.

I stood in the darkness and looked at my three best friends asleep in my room. I got what I needed to and proceeded to wake Maariah up.

Me: (whispering) Maariah…Maariah…wake up

Mari: (she wasn’t sleeping) hmmm

Me: I need you to come with me

Mari: Aara..

Me: please..

I unlocked the door to my balcony and waited for her.

Me: (sitting down) sit down

Maariah was silent. I could see that she had cried a lot…

Me: (taking out the pieces of paper from my pyjama pocket along with Riza’s lighter) regret…(Showing her the paper with “regret” written on it) burn it!

Maariah: ( looking at me with questions in her eyes) I don’t understand..

Me: (exhaling) a long time ago, you did things that you’re not proud of, you regret it and I know that…burn it Maariah


Mari burst out crying as she held the small piece of paper in her hand and then finally lit it…

I had a lump in my throat as I watched her…

Me: (handing her the second piece of paper) anger…built up inside you at yourself…you need to let it go
Tears poured down her cheeks as she lit the second piece of paper…

Me: (handing her the third piece of paper) sadness….the place that you’re in right now..I can’t see you in this place Mari

She cried a little louder as she closed her eyes and clutched onto the piece of paper. By now, tears were streaming down my cheeks too…

Me: (whispering reassuringly) burn it…

And she did…

Me: (handing her the fourth piece of paper) hate…stop hating yourself Maariah…what’s done is done…but the good always outweighs the bad…if Allah can give us millions of second chances…then we are only human

Maariah sobbed and sobbed…and it broke my heart to see her like this…and she finally lit the piece of paper.

Me: (handing her the fifth piece of paper) this one is blank…it’s time to let go of your past and write a new story. Let the next pages of your life be filled with the story of a lifetime…
your story

Mari: (choking on her tears) Aara I’m so sorry…I’m so so sorry Aara…

I didn’t hesitate to wipe her tears and hug her.

Me: I know…I forgive you Maariah…for everything…from the bottom of my heart and I mean it

And as I said those words it felt as though a huge weight was lifted off my heart and my shoulders.

Maariah didn’t try to compose herself, she was broken and I could see it.

She lit the last piece of paper and we watched it burn silently…

Nemo had climbed out of Sahal’s room window into my balcony.

Nemo: (wiping Mari’s tears) it’s over now okay

Mari: (breaking into sobs again) I’m so sorry Nemo…please forgive me I’m so sorry

Nemo: (stroking her head gently) shhhh…it’s okay Maariah…we love you…we forgive you and we still want you to be a part of our lives. Maybe if you hadn’t done what you did, I wouldn’t be here today. Aara would have never known until I was probably beyond salvaging. This is life, I am lucky to have both of you…please let it go…

Me: (wiping my tears) he’s right…let it go…

And I squeezed myself into a group hug with both of them resulting in an initial little bout of laughter from the three of us but then reduced us to tears. We held each other and cried our hearts out. This was it. It was finally over!

After what seemed like ages, we broke free and composed ourselves…or tried to rather.

Nemo: (wiping his tears) Maariah…you really like Immy don’t you?

Mari wiped her tears, looked down and nodded slowly

Nemo: you like him enough to marry him?

And she smiled a little and nodded.

Nemo: well in that case… (And he looked at me)

Me: (wiping my tears and smiling) in that case there’s no time like the present!

Mari: (looking at us shocked) no no guys…how can I face him after…no…I can’t..

Me: Maariah…we burnt regret remember…don’t add a new regret to that list…I’m going to wake up Laeeks and Zai

Waking everyone out of their slumber was torture! Zainab was so out of it that she grunted at me when I shook her!

Finally, we were standing in the passage, lol,everyone in their pjs..rubbing their eyes but bottom line…they were there! Mari was fiddling with a piece of cotton in her hand…Nemo insisted on going downstairs to bring the chocolate cake that we had bought earlier and even put some candles on it.

We slowly opened the room door and I tiptoed over to Zoheb to wake him up.

Zoheb: (mumbling in his sleep) I’m so tired love…

I shook him gently until he too woke up and stood beside me as we looked at Immy sleeping. We probably looked like a bunch of psychos right now…Nemo, Mari and I with our red puffy eyes, Riza with his big hair all standing up, Arshoo with his glasses looking as though they would fall off his face any minute now…

Maariah knelt down beside Immy and stroked his face gently. He didn’t wake up. Then she shook him gently. He STILL didn’t wake up. Then she shook him a little harder. No luck

Arshad: (rubbing his eyes) is he dead or what?

Riza: Arshad! Maybe he took sleeping tablets I dunno

Nemo: the candles are starting to melt…

Zai: (whispering) who asked you to bring the cake??

Mari: ( sadly) we can do this tomorrow

Zoheb: uh uh…wait this guy sleeps dead. Yesterday when I tried waking him up also, he just wouldn’t until Sahal came up with this crazy idea that actually worked

And Zoheb walked towards Immy,held his shoulders and made him sit up in his sleep.

Zoheb: (winking) Arshad..I could use some help here

Arshad: (smirking) with pleasure

What the…

Arshad stood on the bed and on the count of three booted Immy off the bed while Zoheb moved quickly. Within seconds, Immy was flat on his face! I was now more than grateful that my mother had insisted on carpets for all the rooms!

Me: that is so…nasty!!!

Everyone was torn! Immy was groggy and turned over onto his back as he muttered a few unrecognisable words until he opened his eyes and saw all of us grinning at him.

Shame his eyes were also red and puffy and he sat up silently. He looked at Maariah for a few seconds but didn’t say a word.

Maariah knelt down beside Immy..

Mari: (with tears in her eyes and her eyes spoke a million words but right now only a few words mattered) I love you Imraan…

Immy lifted his head and looked at her in shock

Immy: but you said…

Mari: (nodding her head) I didn’t think that I was worthy of you…(And she looked at me for a second) but someone made me realise that life is is once…and all I want is to love you…and to spend the rest of my life with you..

Immy looked at her with tears in his eyes as he held her face gently.

Mari: (holding out the cotton ring that she had been fiddling with) will you please do me the honour and make me your wife?

Immy: (smiling through his tears) I love you…(And he grabbed her into his arms and hugged her as both of them cried together)

All of us were also reduced to tears…

Nemo: (kneeling down beside them) these candles are going…

Immy and Mari wiped each others tears and blew out the candles together.

Zoheb opened the bedside drawer and took out the little Neil Lane ring box and handed it to Immy.

Immy: (slipping the ring onto Maariah’s finger) you have just made me the happiest man alive…you don’t realise it but you have given me a new life

And here we were, at 2am sitting on the room floor in our pj’s, gorging on chocolate cake, celebrating Immy and Maariah’s new found relationship.

We didn’t realise it then, but we were slowly going through lifes different emotions in the guise of our roadtrips. Amidst all the fun and laughter…we were sharing in each others sadness and happiness, learning as we grew, growing as we shared.

And with each step forward, we were not alone…we were blessed with each other as each of us stood as beacons of light in each others lives.
rumi light


17 thoughts on “Part 151- To Forgive Is To Set Free

  1. Yyyeeessss maripops. Thts the way. Aara u are a one in a million friend, really. It’s tks a great amount of strength to genuinly forgive …… yet another amazingly touchin post…… (now its Only our Nemo who didn’t get his love n happiness) sad face…. Thanks for the extra post shazia.


  2. Whoooo hoooo
    Awesome awesome
    This post made me cry. There was so
    much of emotions and maturity…
    I love every part of this post

    Maariah if it wasn’t for u zoheib&aara
    would’ve been incomplete 😉 😉
    All the couples & friends are truly amazing,
    the support they show to each other is
    something else..
    I truly wish that they can be true sincere
    friendship like this in reality…

    Mrs SHAZIA. WELL DONE!! ♡♡♡♡ 😉 🙂


  3. What a beautiful post.
    Mari nemo is right if you didn’t do things everyone wouldn’t be where they are and our aara and zoheb 💕 wouldn’t be together. Aara really found something special with zoheb do hope naeem sees it.
    Aww beautiful the way imraan and mari get engaged
    jazakallah for the post shazia. Your the best😘 have a lovely week🌷


  4. Aaaaaah… This post had me in tears. I’m glad maariah followed her heart. #ripped at how they woke immy up lol. Aara is such a wonderful, amazing young lady


  5. Well done Aarooo! U def the best! And alwAys making ppl happy! So glad she forgave Mari! Now they all can move forward in their lives! Just my nemo left😭! Acting all strong in front of everyone when he hurting inside when he sees aara and zoheb together! Hang in there nemo cos surely after every difficulty comes ease!


  6. What the totilas milo pops?? But that’s true we plan, and Allah plans and Allah is the best of !! And it’s teaching us destiny!! Poooor immmy, I felt broken for him too !! And Aara and Zoheb just sitting in silence on the garden swing (if only it was nemo but destiny bruuuh😩) … That dmc with Aara and Maria it was so sweet yet touchy but that’s life we should burn the past and live in the present!! I love the whole burn each thing it’s so cute mahn!! Nemo had to join and jump out of the window!! So cute they cried together and grouped hugged!! Ooh my frikken word !! This was super sweet and cute and tearable mahn!! And the cotton ring!! Cuteness and beyond!! CongratzZz Immy and Mari on your new journey of a lifetime btw waking immy was was hellova funny #Ripped    JazakAllah for the extra post


  7. What! I was sooo shocked at the beginning 😯

    Hmmm Arroooo where you come up with your ideas?
    Definitely made my day!
    Forgive forget and move on
    IMMY I thought you were dead too! 😀
    Way to go there Mari pops 😇😇
    Nemo Patience is a virtue dude 😃👻

    and now! We have engaged couples
    Zainub & Arshad
    Laeeka & riza
    Mari & immy

    Only ones left Are

    Drumm roll 🎆

    Araa Nemo zoheb

    Buttttt! My fave person on Nemo and aara team Aunty Salma
    Is gonna be my best friend! When

    Nemo & Aara get married 👑

    Zoheb, can become a old cat lady (I mean guy! If you get those)

    Thank you soooooooooooo much for the wonderful post

    Keep up the great work
    Can’t wait for the next post


  8. OH MY GOD !!!!!!!! Thank You So Much Ms Shazia :* !!!! You outdone yourself once again !!!! That was an AMAZING post !!!!! It made me laugh , smile and cry !!! But it was worth it 🙂 !! And i wanna say … i’m sorry about my last comment =)) if you thought it was uhh … weird and disturbing lol ! Sorryyy :* Muje Maaf Karago 😦 :p Thanks again for the wonderful post 😀 mwahh ❤ xoxo


  9. Super Awesome post! Dis post made мε laugh & cry. So glad dat Immy & Maari are together 😀 Aara & Zoheb r totally adorable 😀 #Ripped at how dey woke Immy up =D. Gr8 work sis! Keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s