My dear Umme Aiman,
We already miss you, sweetheart. I know you are strolling in a garden somewhere playing with other beautiful kids like yourself, being watched over by angels and with much better people to take care of you. I wish you had stayed longer though. You were loved and cherished while you lived, and you will be remembered and missed while you are gone. We are glad your suffering is over and we hope you enjoy your Eid just like you had imagined with much more pretty and colorful dresses and hair clips that no one is going to take away from you. You will forever be in our prayers and hearts.
All of us.
Death is the only reality. A bitter truth no one can deny. Life as you know it is going to end one day, irrespective of your age, color, religion or gender. It doesn’t care what state you are in, once it beckons you take its hand and walk away without a single glance as to what or who you are leaving behind.
Many of my close friends reading this would know my two and half years old cousin, Umme Aiman, left us for a better place, a better world yesterday. I have been sitting here for hours, wanting to say a few words for the little angel, to write about her grieving parents who have died and lived everyday for the past fifteen days over the course of her illness. There is so much that I want to write, share and just get it out of my system. But, alas, words fail me again.
I cannot imagine the loss, the pain people feel when someone close to them dies. I don’t know what it is like to lose a loved one. A mother, a father, a sibling, a friend or a child. I don’t know. Allah has been very kind to me, I have never actually suffered a loss first hand. It is fortunate but also a scary thought. I don’t know what my first time would be like and the thought really frightens me.
I sit here and think about her mother. Her strong, patient mother who, just a couple of weeks back, had taken her little one for Eid shopping. She bought her colorful dresses, her favorite shoes and her favorite accessories, not knowing that her child will never get to wear them. All she remembers is Aiman asking her mother for pretty little hair clips that she would hide from her other cousins and wear on Eid. Little did she know that her final dress would be a dull hospital gown and her only accessory would be those scary machines and tubes.
My thoughts go back to her father who, just after a few hours of her death, said “I am missing her!”. Just a few hours! And to imagine that he now has to spend his whole life without his daughter. The man who must’ve dreamed of “giving her away” as a bride, has forever given her away to her final abode. They will now never get to see her grow up and be the amazing person that they thought she would become.
Even if I *try* to imagine what it must be like my heart breaks into pieces. The pain is beyond my comprehension. It is not like people don’t know that they or someone close to them have to die one day. We all know, its the bitter truth. It is the realisation that one would never ever see that person again. Never talk to them, never touch them, never get to hold them again, wipe their tears or hear their laughter. Everything is gone and for good. To realise they are NEVER coming back, that is what death is.
My own thoughts do not make sense to me. I just seem to be aimlessly typing. Please say a prayer for the little angel, her parents and her family. Because for them there will be other children, but there will be no other Umme Aiman.
Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there; I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on snow,
I am the sun on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft star-shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there; I did not die.