Ican still remember last Eidul Azha. The memory is very clear to me and my mind began to escape into the past. I felt deep nostalgia in my soul.

I can remember my cousin and I with my cow. And the story begins like this ….

“Hey! It’s standing. Let’s play with it!” Sonia, my cousin and best friend, called out to me.

I was standing near the fenced area inside our house in the backyard, in which our enormous cow was tied securely with a pole. It had smooth fluffy pure white skin and two big majestic black horns. The unique thing about it was that it wasn’t an angry cow, unlike other cows I had seen in our neighbourhood.

I, being a seven years old kid, stood aside because I was afraid of cows, but upon my brave cousin’s pleas, I agreed to come closer, trying to overcome my fears.

I joined Sonia and we both began to poke the cow with thin sticks. At first, it seemed not to be bothered about it. It was moving slightly, as if to move flies off its back. However, we continued our mischief. Gradually, this started to become boring so I rushed to the stool at the corner to pick up a water bowl to make the cow drink water. When I got a little close, the cow kicked me hard and I fell back with water all over and a bump on my head.

I started to cry and before I fainted, I saw a blurry vision of Asad bhaiya coming to aid me.

I woke up to find myself in the hospital, with white high ceilings and broad windows through which sunlight was peeking in the ward. Although I wasn’t seriously injured, I had a bump on my forehead, making it slightly swollen and red.

My family was standing next to me. My anxious mum was bursting with emotions, and tension and anger. Although I was scolded a little, I also enjoyed having two big packs of cold juice.

Then Ali bhaiya came forward and spoke with concern, “Dear, do you know why the cow hit you!”

I replied innocently, “No bhaiya, I was just getting it water and it kicked me.”

“This is because when you and Sonia were touching it with sticks, it hurt the cow and it considered you as an enemy. So it kicked you to protect itself. You guys should have behaved well and shouldn’t hurt a sacrificial animal. It’s really disappointing.

Do you know that if anyone hurts a sacrificial animal, Allah (SAW) gets displeased with them. Do you guys want to displease Allah?” Ali bhaiya lectured.

I, realising my mistake, replied, “I am really sorry. From now onwards, I won’t hurt any animal and will also teach others not to do so.”

Ali bhaiya, who was few minutes ago really crossed with me, patted my head gently since I had accepted my mistake and also promised to amend it. Soon we all had ice cream which papa bought and after that we all came back home.

Sonia was also sorry for me. And this not only taught me a lesson, but also taught Sonia and other kids like us that we should never hurt any animal or disturb them or get too close as it can also hurt us.

From then onwards, I took great care of my cow and didn’t hurt me. Instead, I was really upset on the day of Eidul Azha, since my cow was going to be sacrificed. I didn’t want it to go and I was silently crying.

Happy Eidul Azha to everyone!

Published in Dawn, Young World, July 17th, 2021

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