A Father’s Love // Hamza Ahmed

It was a chilly Monday morning. Ahmed was getting ready for the school. His father, who was a postman would drop him at the school every day while going to post office. Ahmed was studying in a reputable school–despite his low income, Ahmed’s father was doing everything for Ahmed to get an adequate education. Though Ahmed didn’t like the idea of going to school daily on a bicycle– when most of his classmates were dropped by their drivers on posh cars. As compared to other students, Ahmed’s pocket money for school lunch was very low– most of the days he got his lunch from home. Ahmed’s frustration was growing by every passing day; he could not participate in pricey school activities, he never went to any kind of picnic with his school. One night when his father returned home looking overworked and frail, he irately asked his father for rs.500. When his father asked him why he needs those,” Because my friends get what they ask for. Their fathers never deny them what they ask for. I need rs.500  or I won’t go school tomorrow,” Ahmed told his father stubbornly.”Dear Ahmed, I can’t give you rs.500 tonight,but I promise, I’ll give you tomorrow,”

Ahmed had no other choice and he felt guilt somewhere inside him so he agreed.Next day, Ahmed made plans with his friends for picnic, parties and so many other things he couldn’t do because of his budget restraints.Now he has found a way to get money out from his father’s pocket– he would emotionally blackmail him if he doesn’t give him the money.That night, to Ahmed’s surprise his father gave him rs.500.Ahmed didn’t say a word and went to his bed triumphantly.Next day Ahmed asked his father for a smartphone with the same tactics he had used a night before.Ahmed’s father  promised him to buy him a smartphone the next day. Ahmed got his smartphone that worthed more than rs.10,000.Ahmed could not believe his luck.He was getting everything he wanted.

After a couple of days, Ahmed realised that since the day he asked his father for rs.500, he has been returning home late at around 1:00 am and leaves early in the morning at 8:00am.Ahmed curiously asked his father why is he returning late,”I am overworked these days son, but you don’t worry… just focus on your school and have fun,”he replied Ahmed in a weary voice.Ahmed, who was on a very tight budget a month before, now has everything he wanted.Next day Ahmed returned home from school and went out for lunch with  his friends.When he returned home he went to bed without saying a word but was woken up by his mother at around 2:00am ,”Ahmed, your father was supposed to be home at 1:00 am, it’s 2:00 am and he hasn’t come back,” Ahmed hated the idea of coming out of blanket when it was less than 3 degrees outside– but he left for post office on his own bicycle after dawdling for 10 minutes under his blanket. During his commute to post office, a thought struck him inside like a thunderbolt ” how my father works till midnight in such weather? Is it because of me that he is working for 5-6 hours?”

Ahmed was feeling guilty now. He reached post office and saw closed gates. He wondered post office is supposed to be closed at 7:00 pm then where does his father go? Lost in thoughts he decided to go back to home. Instinctively, he chose another route for his commute to home. When he was passing by a warehouse where labors load and unload goods for export, he was astonished to see his father lading the trucks. He was weary but still doing his best to keep up with the rest of the workers. When Ahmed walked towards him– still unnoticed– he collapsed. Ahmed ran towards him and took him to the doctor. The doctor told them not worry about, “Your father is feeling weak and he needs some rest now,” the doctor told Ahmed. When Ahmed’s father revived the next day, Ahmed was sitting beside him with watery eyes. He asked him for pardon and asked him, “Promise me Dad, you won’t do anything like that… no matter how insane I would become,”

His father replied in a weary voice, “Always…..”

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