By Hamna Shakeel Grade 10

As our flight landed and the announcements were made, my heart started beating as fast as it could. I still could not believe I’d reached my destination. A place I had longed to visit at least once! It all seemed like a dream to me…

After few hours, we were welcomed warmly by my paternal aunt’s family where we were to stay instead of a hotel.

As, I entered the Haram, my heart pounded, my whole body shivered and sweated. My eyes were transfixed waiting for the first glance of Ka’ba. I felt a rush of blood in my whole body. Azaan reverberated in the enormous yard of Haram Sharif – it was maghrib time, I offered maghrib salah in the yard and then we headed to the mosque through Ba’ab e Fahad. I was trembling as I walked through the cool shaded building upheld by innumerable archways. I gasped,“I am here!” My head was spinning, yet my eyes were focused on the Kaaba. I stood in awe and wonder, reverence and astonishment – a profound sadness and an irresistible smile of infinite joy engulfed me simultaneously. I didn’t know how to thank Almighty Allah for the blessing and making my dream come true. I was oblivious of my surroundings.It was only me and the Kaaba. How can I be here? How come I was so fortunate? It was beyond imagination, an amazing reality. I had an urge to touch Kaaba at least once, but it was surrounded by a flood of people who were circumbulating and my chances of touching it seemed grim.I asked my aunt to help.She made way for me through the influx of people who were busy in performing their ritual feeling the presence of Allah.I kept my hands on the wall of Kaaba, hugged it and cried uncontrollably. After some time peace descended upon me.I stood silently reciting the verses from Quran. After a while, I felt a hand on my shoulder, I turned around to see my aunt who held my hand and led me to my family. My mum hugged and asked me to complete my tawafs.

I still remember how during tawafs, I asked Allah that eventhough I commit so many sins why did he still call me to His home – why? All I could think of was His infinite mercy on me which could have been the reason. I STILL COULD NOT BELIEVE THAT I HAD VISITED MACCA. My childhood dream had finally come true. Alhamdulilah