Breaking news ,5 minutes ago, "Pakistan witnessed a bitter earthquake, Kashmir is the most destructed". I was terrified listening to the news updates. My mind vibrating like a door bell. As I thought of my best friend, Waleed, from Kashmir.
After few minutes, trying to calm myself down. I picked up the phone, dialed Waleed's Number. It start ringing, as if synchronizing with my heart beats. The first, the second, the third. No one's picking up. I started walking back and forth in my room until I decided to go and see him myself.
I packed whatever I saw in front of me and left home. On the way, I kept on calling him again,and again. UP NO TO AVAIL. NO HOPE. HE'S GONE? O God where is he? Why he isn't picking up? Is he fine? These questions were rotating in my mind like spinning tyre. I felt my body trembling fearing the worst!
After Eight hours, I finally reached Kashmir. The conditions there were terrible. Houses were destroyed. Bodies on the ground, all dead & THOUSANDS were injured. Ambulances & volunteers of Pakistan Red Crescent Society were working as hard as they could; curing the injured & taking the dead bodies away towards hospitals.
As I reached his home by the grace of Allah the Almighty, I was horrified by how it looked, completely destroyed! There was nothing but the curse of storm. After asking the "living" people around, I came to know that his family were found, all dead. Any voice I heard seemed ominous to my listening power,it fell on me like thunder.
Tears started falling down from my eyes like rain drops from the sky. I felt someone grabbing my soul, Stealing it away. My eyes were aching. Everything seemed ambiguous, colorless, day became night and light became dull. I felt weather changing into autumn, Nightingales stopping to sing, moon ceasing to spread its light, stars becoming ash.
Though many people were around, I was feeling lonely, so lonely that such an awful day should be banned. My body started screaming, I felt my body surrender, give up. That's when someone noticed me, and came to give me some water. The water was passing from my throat like thorns.
I finally lost hope, and sat on the pavement, still crying. Apparently someone else noticed me. So he grabbed my shoulder. I turned to see his face but there was a lot of tears for a clear vision. Just as I was trying to clear my eyes, a sweet warm voice entered into my ears. Could it be true?! YES, IT WAS! WALEED's voice, he is right in front of me, ALIVE!
We hugged each other as if we haven't seen each other for a decade. Both of us were weeping intensely! I suddenly felt like autumn turned into spring, birds started singing, coldness & darkness were replaced by warmness & brightness.
My first verbal reaction was "From now on, you have to look for a place near my city!!" But he declined saying "My people need me, how can I leave them at the time of need. My family is gone now. THESE people are now my family". How could one be so peaceful after such a disaster? I thought. I was overwhelmed by his kindness that I actually decided to stay with him there. That decision marks the darkest day of my life changing into the BEST day EVER. I stayed there for six months & did all I can to help the people and the city to recover.
Now, whenever I visit it there & see how much better the conditions are, how everyone now has a smile drawn on his/her face. I FEEL SO HAPPY, AND PROUD!
Bottom line, always offer help when you can afford it. Have faith, and hope. It always pays off. You just have to BELIEVE.