Author’s note: A friend once told me that a woman does not need a man’s approval even in the form of love to validate her worth. Living in a society which measures a woman’s value with the presence of a man in her life, this is easier said than done. Humsafar, to me, is not just a story being told brilliantly or merely a poignant journey of the characters we have come to love, but it is more of a validation for what my friend truly believes.
Through the tale of two women, Khirad and Sara, ‘Humsafar’ reinforces the fact that a woman’s self-worth is a measure of what she is with or without a man by her side. Khirad is the epitome of a woman I would forever strive to emulate. Her strength of character and her resolve is evident even at times when all the odds have been stacked against her; she has forged ahead with clarity of purpose that is truly extraordinary. Sara, on the other hand, symbolizes weakness that I dread, a weakness born out of an all-consuming love that destroys one’s essence.
Heart knows what the mind doesn’t
Ashar’s anguish over his heart wanting Khirad back in his life rips him apart. His mind refuses to believe he could want a woman who had ruthlessly crushed his heart and betrayed his trust. His mind, trying to find plausible excuses for his heart, pauses to reminisce her words about the virtue of being truthful. He also remembers his father’s dying advice to realize Khirad’s true essence and protect her at all cost. Ashar once again is blind to what his heart has already declared to him – that Khirad is innocent for inspite of all his faults, he is an honorable man who would never love a conceited woman.
The Ultimate Sacrifice of a Mother
Her child’s welfare is paramount for a mother. While it is no different for Khirad, she takes it several notches higher by deciding to let Hareem live with her father who is in a better position to offer her daughter the security she needs. It is a tough decision but Khirad is unwaveringly stubborn to see it through for her daughter’s benefit.
In my view, Khirad’s decision has a major flaw: She has failed to consider a daughter’s need for a mother’s love and presence that is irreplaceable. No amount of security, emotional and otherwise, provided by a devoted father can equal a mother’s loving embrace or her unwavering support for a daughter.
Torment turns Full Circle!
I enjoy Farida’s plight of being the tormented instead of the tormentor. Khizer earns brownie points just for that. Karma is about to knock on her door soon. Meanwhile, she is still up to her dirty tricks by telling her son that Khizer with Khirad’s encouragement is waiting for Ashar to divorce her. Ashar’s agony over this information is writ large on his face when it comes from his mother, a person he has no reason (yet) to disbelieve.
Five years ago when Ashar married Khirad, he lacked the maturity to realize the depth of the woman he began to love. After all these years, through separation, betrayal, heartache, and realization he is yet to fully grasp the true strength and integrity of the only woman he has ever loved. Such is the profoundness of Khirad’s spirit; a man has to surpass ordinariness to be truly worthy of her love and devotion. Ashar is but an ordinary man and no less than his penance for failing to recognize her worth will suffice to regain Khirad’s love and trust.
Ashar literally throws his heart at her feet, but Khirad stands strong resolutely refusing to acknowledge his feelings. Ashar is stunned, angry, and hurt at her refusal to talk any further when he lays his heart in front of her requesting her to come back to him at least for their daughter’s sake. Khirad’s smirk at his vehemence that he has whole-heartedly forgiven her for her betrayal says it all.
Navin Waqar once again proves her mettle as an actress in a scene where she breaks down in front of her mother portraying a vulnerable Sara who is helpless in letting Ashar go. She successfully brings out her trauma over her undying love for Ashar and hatred for Khirad. Her impeccable portrayal of Sara left me aching on behalf of a character I don’t usually relate to for it is unthinkable for me to self-destruct in the name of unrequited love.
Fawad Khan and Mahira Khan moved me beyond words with their exemplary performances. Fawad, in my opinion, has joined the ranks of seasoned actors with his flawless portrayal of Ashar in ‘Humsafar’ while Mahira Khan has honed her acting skills with an author-backed role of Khirad.
Precap of Episode 22
The letter that Khirad wrote for Ashar at the time when Farida cruelly ousted her from her home finally reaches the person it was meant for. Ashar after reading the letter breaks down at the injustice meted out to his wife. Another scene I am looking forward to is the one where Ashar slaps Khizer. Now that is something worth waiting for.