بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ
This girl was something else! Something about her just tugged at my heartstrings. I’m not sure exactly what it was, her bubbly nature, her cute opinions, her spontaneous reactions, her innocence, they all just got to me.
The first time I saw her is a memory that will be engrained in my head for a long time. She had come up to me with a tear-stained face to ask for help. I didn’t know what was the reason behind it, what she wanted help with, but I wanted to do everything in power to help and protect her.
I tried my best to comfort her and advise her and from that first time we had met, she decided that I was one of her best friends. It didn’t seem to matter to her that I was a total stranger who she didn’t know anything about. I mean I could be serial killer for all she knew. All that she saw was I had helped her so she liked and trusted me. She’s just too cute. Soon she became the like the little sister I had always wished for.
For some reason she seems to think that I have the answers to all the problems in the world. I hope I don’t disappoint. I hope I can help her. I wonder whats plaguing her mind now. Unable to wait a moment longer, I demanded, “Spill!”
As she confided in me her unsavoury experience, thoughts of my school days began flooding in. Those dreaded memories I had tried hard to forget, were once again brought to the front of my mind. Deciding that it might be of some help to her, I reluctantly decided to reveal my past to her.
“I don’t want to burst this bubble that you seem to have about me but let me tell you what led me to who I am today. My class in school was one that was every teachers nightmare. We gave really the teachers a hard time.
We wouldn’t do our homework, we would demand to be taken outdoors, we would eat in class, we would be doing our own thing while the teacher was trying to teach and the days when we would actually listen to the teacher, we find an innuendo for a seemingly innocent statement from the teacher and our entire class would be in giggles.
That’s just the tip of the ice burg. You witnessed kids bullying a kid. We were kids who were bullying adults. It sounds kind of funny but I’m telling you, we were cruel. Being sent to the principal was no threat as the principal’s office was basically our second home.
We were unafraid and would daily ignore, argue or insult the teachers until they would eventually break down. It was so bad at times that the teachers would storm out of our class in tears refusing to teach our class anymore. They didn’t know what to do with us.
If it was just a few children then expulsion is the obvious answer but this was our entire class. We were proud of our ‘United Front’. There was no way they could take drastic disciplinary measures because child abuse is not taken lightly.
Eventually my mother got tired of being called to school along with the other parents about our behaviour. She was also becoming disgusted with my behaviour at home so she decided she had enough. It was time to take action.
The root of the problem she concluded was my company and my lack of Islamic knowledge. She wanted to sent me to a boarding madrassah. I threw tantrums, I pleaded with her, I threatened to run away and even went as far as getting my father involved. I began crying by him saying that mummy was being evil and separating us and how was I going to live without him? I am a daddy’s girl after all and every girl knows the way around her father’s heart. My ammunition against it was too strong so she eventually gave up.
When I was in grade 9 our town’s one and only Aalimah madrassah opened up. As it is local and only part-time my mother didn’t even inform me about anything. I was shocked to find her dropping me of there instead of at school. She was adamant on me leaving school and doing madrassah instead.
She informed me, “You are already enrolled here and the fees is paid. I have also informed the school that you will no longer be attending. Your excuses about missing your father and about having no life any more are invalid because this madrassah is in our home town and the madrassah hours are very similar to the school hours so you’ll still have lots of free time. Don’t try to get your father to intervene again because there is no way I’m allowing you to change my mind this time.”
And she drove off leaving me all alone in a new place. I was not even prepared for this. I was outraged. ‘How could she do this to me? What do I do now? How dare she leave me alone like this? I don’t even know the place nor the people! I was terrified?!’