Just after completing her studies at college, Sweetie flew off to Dubai. Some friends of hers were already based there and they have been asking her to join them. Sweetie just could not wait to leave the country; in her mind she wanted to move on, close the chapter on sadness enveloping her life here and begin fresh in the desert country.
Sweetie shared none of her plans with her family. No one knew she was leaving. She only told Sue and left a short note for her father. No explanations – just a simple good bye message. No matter how painful or troublesome, her journey would continue.
Sue was all alone after Sweetie left. She gave her blessings anyway, though she knew that didn’t mean much to Sweetie. Not a day passed without Sue’s prayers for Sweetie’s wellbeing. Sweetie was the only someone who was close to her in this world. Never mind if Sweetie never realized it.
Sue moved on too. She found a job in a retail outlet in town. Starting as a store hand, she slowly moved up in the company. In two years she was made assistant manager and often became exemplary employee for her thrust wordiness and commitment at work.
Worlds apart now, both girls kept in touch via emails and occasional phone calls. They shared their ups and downs, updates on local gossips but never a single mention about family.
Sue also learnt that Sweetie had started work at a hotel in Dubai. Work was challenging and that kept her occupied. From their chats, Sue gathered that Sweetie was very happy with her new life in the foreign country.
Each time when Sue asked Sweetie about her family back home, Sweetie would change topic and talk about something else. Every time when Sue reminded her to call her parents, Sweetie would get upset and keep her distance. Sue tried to reach beyond the emptiness of Sweetie’s heart but she had put a tight lock on the door.
"She is still your mother, Sweetie," advised Sue as she spoke softly to Sweetie from her end of the line.
"She's still your mother....no matter what. Dunia akhirat dia mak you Sweetie...."
Then there was silence. Sue knew that Sweetie was holding back her emotions. Sue could sense behind that happy front Sweetie was putting, her soul was empty. The warmth in her heart could no longer be felt. The past had hardened her; and her nasty and ugly relationship with her mother was turning her into a cold creature.
If only she could help bring back mother and daughter together again, she would be the most happy person alive. But she knew that, no matter how noble was the effort, a reunion of Sweetie and her mommy would never happen.
“There was still one last hope,” Sue said to herself.
Pray……and pray she did.