CHAPTER 23 (last chapter)

Posted: August 14, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Sawliha is looking beautiful today. She has a white wedding gown and her head scarf is tied modestly and flatteringly over her head. Her mother sits next to her, her face exposed and she looks happy and sad at the same time.The venue has separate area for men and so many of the other ladies who also wear the purdah (face veil) have removed it. I am in awe of some of their beauty and think of how lucky their husbands must feel to be the only man to see it. It is a hot summer day in the highveld and it is sweltering. I have chosen a seat close to an open door. On my table sits my sisters in law and mother in law as well as Sawliha’s nani (maternal grandmother).

“My Bachoo is gone so big. I can remember the day she was born” says Hawa Khala, the brides nani. Fehmida is her only daughter and they are very close. “You know I did Fehmida’s and my daughter in law’s hoowaver (confinement) at my house, but no baby cried more than Sawliha”, she laughs. My mother in law joins in the reminecsence, “I know she nearly drove poor Fehmida crazy with her colic. I remember we tried everything, I even tied cloves to her naval, nothing worked”. My sister in laws and I join in the laugh but say nothing, we are all used to my mother in laws take on medicine.

Are you all ok here? The lady who has been serving our table during the wedding reception lunch, asks. “one more platter of masala , Kanala” says Husna adding, “..and..agh tog yine, please see if you have a diet coke in the kitchen for me”. she smiles kindly at her.

“Since when are you on a diet?” I ask her accusingly. She has never been one to watch what she ate, but she was certainly not overweight. “Moosa wants to book mauritius for the december holidays, so I need to look good in my bikini”, she winks at me. My mother in law overhears and joins the conversation, “As long as you don’t come back pregnant” she teases. Husna laughs, “no ma, don’t even joke like that, Tawbah tawbah” she says. I flush pink at my mother in laws comment, I can never get used to jokes like that from my mother in law. I am glad that she reserves them for Husna alone. “Farnaz” my mother in law says scoldingly, “please eat look at your plate it is nearly empty. You are eating for two, please Farnaz, dish up some fore gajar halwa or wait here’s the rice”, she spoons some hot Briyani in my plate just as the waitress brings it. I don’t complain, I seemed to have developed a taste for degh briyani ever since I stopped throwing up. I even ate it for breakfast everyday for a week when my Mother in law sent for me.

“When was your last appointment with the doctor?”, Shazia my other sister in law , asks. My fertility and general health has become an open subject since the day Hussain announced to his family that we were pregnant. Every doctor’s appointment is discussed and inquired about and every new drug and new word is researched. I enjoy how supportive they have all been. “I saw her last week Friday” I say. “Everything is looking good, she was very happy. She did a sonar and checked the thickness of my Uterus. She is happy and says there is no reason we should be worried now. She has given me a protein supplement and some exercises to make labour easy. I am also seeing a chiropractor to help with posture to take the pressure off my womb”.

“wow that is interesting, Farnaz. I’ve never heard of a chiropractor for pregnant woman before.” She says. “I was surprised too, but Rahima the Chiropractor said , that it works even for woman without uterus detachment, and she even gets you to wear a type of sling to support your growing tummy, saving you from back pain.” Im so glad everything is going well, We were all waiting until you were six months pregnant , and making so much of dua” Fehmida said. And I thank her for her kindness. “When I phoned motima a couple of months ago to tell her, she was so happy but she was cross when I said that you were already six months pregnant.” My mother in law said, “You know these old woman” she continues cheekily, excluding herself, “want to know everyones business all the time”. We laughed at my mother in laws attitude. “I gave her such a mouthful she couldn’t say a word”. She looked proud of herself. “Jee “, I began, “I met her here in the hall earlier, she just congratulated me and said that you explained to her everything”. My mother in law clearly did give her a talking to. “ Hey Farnaz” my mother in law says as I change position for the fifth time, “Are you are not carrying twins?” the humour in her voice makes me laugh. My tummy has grown very large and I probably look like I am ready to give birth. “Here”, she says handing me her rolled up pashmina, “Put this behind you”, I do so and it is helping. “I hope you are taking it easy” my mother in law warns. “Maybe I need to tell hussain to keep an eye on you”, she threatens. “i’m working from home now, It is hard carrying around this extra weight” I say and smile to myself, Carrying around a baby growing inside me for the past eight months, has been a burden I am only too happy to bare.

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Comments
  1. amina says:

    Loving the blog, it just keeps on getting better n better…
    Keep it up:)

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