My breathing calmed down and I ushered my thoughts towards the last days of my life before I was diagnosed. He asks so many questions, more than my thinking mind would like to process at a time.
Oh, wait. I’m familiar with this road. Too familiar, in fact. Why are we here? Please no. Please drive away.
“Hey, it’s around Zohor. Can we stop by?” He said we approached a mosque.
I nodded; this mosque beside the sea actually brought a lot of memories but none with him. I can’t really say no to that question. Maybe a new memory today? Maybe.
We reached the almost empty parking lot of the mosque. He had his shoes off by the time we parked, I could tell by the smell.
“Sorry!” he said.
Clearly he knew I could smell his feet.
I wasn’t able to perform my prayers this particular day so I stayed by the car. The plan did not last long as the sun was up above everyone’s head. After a short while, after I saw him leaving the ablution hall, I made my way out of the car.
I leaned on the passenger’s door with an obvious view of the entrance. The entrance was grand but very welcoming with its steel structure and detailed calligraphy on the marble walls.
I sat down at the bench just behind the entrance of the mosque. It was open for me to see inside the prayer hall. There I saw him with his purple t-shirt and his forehead on the ground with the open sea very clear from where I was standing. He was right in the middle and the sun gave way for my sight.
It was just something about the light that hit him that day. I couldn’t help but to smile.
People come and go through the entrance and before I know it, he joined the leavers of the mosque. He didn’t see me as he was busy looking for his shoes. He’s a bit lost on these small matters; it took him a good two minutes before he was reunited with his shoes.
“Hey, it’s a good day and the sun is just shaded by the clouds. Wanna take a walk?” He asked.
“Sure, we can take a short walk along the seaside.” My mouth disagreed with my brain.
Observant, this boy. He looked at every seaside rock like he had never seen any before. I understand the fact this is the first time he ever set foot here. But rocks, really? Now I‘m the one asking questions. The gentle waves accompanied me in my curiousity.
He took a small rock and threw it as far as he could. I was not impressed; but then he then directed his little eyes directly towards me.
“Nawwar, do you ever ask why?” He took me by surprise with this question.
“Why? What do you mean?” I pretended to not understand.
“Your… condition… Have you ever asked why? Do you talk to God about it?” He continued.
Nobody ever asked me this question before. I was diagnosed with my condition when I was fourteen and ten years later this is the first time someone asks this question. I really just wanted to tell him that I do, every day. In every prayer my heart seeks an answer. Am I challenging God? Am I ungrateful?
I do not ask such questions any more, but I did continue to look for solace.
“I got used to it.” I hope he finds the answer clichéd and acceptable.
“Are you sure? Okay..” I don’t think he bought it.
“Nawwar… Nawwar Syifa.. What does your name mean, by the way?” Again with the questions.
“It means the giver of light, the cure..”
He stopped throwing small rocks into the ocean and sat down. He promptly asked me to join him. The wind was stronger now and he kept a distance.
“Well, can you be my cure?”
part II here
– End of part III –