It was beyond her imagination that I could prefer her for a consort. She knew how deep my involvement in da’wah was, and the kind of a lady that befitted a person of my religious status, hence her worry that brought about the inquiry. She was right. Callers should walk their talks. They should be exemplary so that they are healthily mirrored and modelled. How would I have preached and encouraged the use of hijab as originally enshrined in the Scripture but refused to pick on one of the users for a wife?

I got the point and the message fathomed. Chronologically, I gave her a download of my story and with rapt attention she listened. She emotionally assumed my shoes and obviously felt my pains. Then she realized why if it wasn’t her, it would be no one else.

“OK, there is no problem,” she mumbled, gazing fixedly at the floor. My ears fell out like that of a rabbit. “You said what? Do I take that for a yes? Does that mean you are in for the matrimonial deal I seek of you. I mean are you implying that you will be my wife?” I expressed happiness in advance. “Yes!” she answered. That was how the journey started hoping so prayerfully that she would end up a woman of my choice. She was a semi-final year Petrol Chemical Science student and I was awaiting the national service.

Later on, she told me why it took her sometime before accepting me for a crown. She said having been satisfied with the various qualities she desired of a man, she got extremely dissuaded by my inclination to Sunnah, especially with respect to my ankle-levelled trousers. She said she felt I was too religious for her liking. “How will I take a walk down the street with a husband whose pair of trousers is usually in a skirmish with the ground?” she said, humorously. “But you see, aside been guided through istikhaarah (prayer for guidance), you passed virtually all tests and fit into my criteria: you are cute; you dress well; you are intelligent; and most significantly, you are Godly. I just said to myself, give him a try and see how things will work out in the end,” she added.

I was moved to ecstasy hearing her shower eulogies on me. “So I’m cute?” I soliloquized. You know how it feels when your praise is sung by a would-be wife. I felt on top of the world.

Like wide fire fuelled by harmattan and fanned by wind, the news spread across the campus: that Kay Yusuf wanted to marry a “scarfite”. Gossips gossipped, backbiters backbit and slanderers slandered. I wasn’t happy though, but wasn’t moved a second, because I knew I did so sincerely and had the moral support of fellow ahlus-sunnah friends.

One of our ahlus-sunnah elders, one day, visited me and inquired about my proposed marriage to the lady. I answered in the affirmative insinuating that he would reprimand me for stooping low, but no, he was rather happy. I was surprised he was glad. This was someone whose wife was a niqaabi and would never encourage someone of my religious status to do less than the level of his wife. “I have studied that lady and I could see the trace of religiosity in her. What she truly needs is someone of our calibre to put her through, and you will be surprised how rapidly she will grow,” he remarked. That got me encouraged the more. So I didn’t bother myself with the cacophonous echoes in the market, but rather focused the one with whom I was having merchandise.

I fast-tracked her meeting with my parents, but you see, something indelible happened.


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