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As culled from QUORA.COM

In Pakistan, parents usually arrange the wedding for their children. Same was done to my elder siblings. I was no different. When I was 16 years old my parents promised me to the daughter of their close friend. She was 13 Years old at the time. When I came to know of this arrangement I became furious with my parents and especially my mom, but she tried to calm me and said that they will not make any decision that would be bad for my future. I saw this girl and I wasn’t even interested in her one bit. A revengeful thought came to my mind and I made a decision that when the time came I will not marry this girl whatever happens.

Fast forward five and a half years, I have completed my education and have a steady well paying job. At this time my mother is sick and I loved my mother to death. As any good son I did not want my mother to sad or hurt due to my actions. I thought If I refused the proposal that my parents have fixed for me five years ago they will be hurt and can cause my mother stress that will be bad for her health. So i decided to give a chance to this girl (keep in mind, i have no idea if this girl even likes me but I was on a high horse and thought who would not want me- i have changed that thought process now) and hope for the best.

In Pakistan and especially in my family it is frowned upon if the people of opposite sex talk to each other without any official engagement or anything. So, I got the number of this girl through my sister with whom she was friends with.

Lets call this girl Warda from now on.

The first telephone conversation with Warda went like this:

Me: Hello

Warda: Hello, who are you?

Me: I am Talha.

Warda: Silence… (she was not used to talking to boys and was surprised that I called her)

Me: Hello, are you there?

Warda: Please don’t mind but why did you call me.

Me: I just want to know you better as I am assuming you know about our arrangement?

Warda: Yes. I know.

Me: Sooooo, are you ready to marry me or is there any pressure on you from your parents?

Warda: Silence…

Me: Hello, did you hear me?

Warda: Yes.

Me: And?

Warda: Yes I want to marry you.

Me: Why? You don’t even know me.

Warda: I know you a little.

Me: What do you know about me.

Warda: You really want to know.

Me: I wouldn’t ask if I didn’t want to know.

Warda: Your favorite color is black. Your favorite food is Biryani( Asian rice Dish). You love reading books. You can do anything for your loved ones. You stop talking to anyone except your mother when you are angry. You hate liars and would not trust anybody if they lied to you. You give candies to your nephews without telling their parents so they would like you more and You dont like me ( she said with very sad voice and a sigh)

Me: How do you know these things about me?

Warda: Are they true?

Me: Thats not the point.

Warda: When you want to know somone then getting the information about them is not that hard.

Me: Why would you want to know anything about me?

Warda: We are “promised” to each other. (She said jokingly)

Me: Okay great. It was nice talking to you. Take ca-

Warda: you are hanging up the phone?

Me: you want to ask me something?

Warda: Are you happy with this proposal?

Me: Silence… (wheels turning in my mind)

Warda: Talha?

Me: I told her everything truthfully.

Warda: You can hang up the phone after I tell you this last thing.

Me: okay and what’s that?

Warda: mujhy aapse pichley 6 saalon se muhabbat he (I am in love with you for the past six years)

Me: In love with me? And for the past six years? How? Our arrangement was fixed 5 and a half years ago?

Warda: I loved you even before there was anything between us.

Me: Okay.

Warda: Will you call again?

Me: Should I?

Warda: If you want to.

Me: If I don’t want to?

Warda: Its upto you but I would prefer if you call again. Take care and sweet dreams.

Me: bye.

Warda got under my skin in the first call. Then two days later I called again and it was a routine to call her every days. She had the type of personality that if your day was going bad then with just her words and quirks she would make it beautiful. In every call she was not shy to profess her love for me.

One of the most relation defining conversations I had with her on the telephone was after 2 months.

Me: Hello.

Warda: Hello, how are you meri jaan (my life)?

Me: fine. How are you? (i was not the type of guy who knew how to talk romantically)

Warda: Now that I have heard your voice I am feeling alot better.

Me: Why do you always talk like this?

Warda: Like what?

Me: This over-romantic tone and words.

Warda: Do you love me?

Me: WHAT? (This was the first time she asked me this?)

Warda: Answer me.

Me: I don’t know.

Warda: Then you will not understand it.

Me: You are not angry at my answer?

Warda: No.

Then she said something that took my breathaway and I fell in love with her right away.

Warda: I love you. I have loved you even when you did now acknowledge me. I have loved you even when I didn’t know what love was. I love you and will love you until my last breath. I love you enough for the both of us.

Me: flabbergasted…

Warda: Talha? Are you there?

Me: Yes. So is the preparation for your fiends wedding?

I changed the topic because I did not have any answer and did not had the courage to confess my love to her at that time.

I did confess my love to her when I met her the first time and I saw the happy tears in her eyes.

Few months ago she had terrible fever, I was on a business trip. After two days of this fever, doctors diagnosed her with Hepatitis-A and it gor really bad in just four days. She was admitted in the hospital. She went to coma after three days and passed away the fourth day. Just like that, I lost her.

I went in to extreme depression and I could not tell anybody about my feelings as they all thought that I wasn’t t interested in her and how I could tarnish her reputation after she passed away by telling everybody that we were in constant contact.

I regret not telling her that I loved her more frequently. I regret not telling her how beautiful she was. I regret ever arguing with here. I regret not telling her how unconditional her love was for me. I regret not telling her how her shyness was so attractive. I regret not doing more for her. I regret I wasn’t there for her in her last days.

But most of all I regret the five and a half years I wasted by not knowing here.

Life is fragile. Don’t make the mistakes that I made and tell your loved ones how much they mean to you and how much you love them.

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About the author

I am Titilola Edu Peperempe God, a Lawyer, freelance writer, a rice & stew enthusiast. I am passionate about God, growth and money (please don’t blame me). Sometimes I feel like I am the next best thing since slice bread, other times I know it.

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