How does one say goodbye?... Losing a loved one and learning to move on

Life is indeed a mass complexities that sometimes founds us and completely overwhelms our senses when we are faced with some of its marvels and mysteries. Marvels and mysteries like death, does anyone ever really understand why it has to happen apart from the scientific explanation that we are taught in school about the cycle of life, how it starts and why it ends? We also know and accept as an integral part of our faith that, a person is born, goes through life and then dies and that death will definitely come.

Also we know that its where, when and how are part of the secrets of the Unseen that only Allaah has the exclusive knowledge of. But does knowing ever really prepare you for losing someone dear? Can anybody truly understand that wrenching pain of losing a dear one or the resultant emptiness of the soul as though a huge chunk of it has been torn away? Do the memories fade away with time as some well meaning sympathizers predict? Memories! Perhaps they willfade depending on the nature of the loss .. , or the person lost. Perhaps not ...! What is it about a person anyway that keeps him or her even in death; alive in the hearts those that care? Is it the age, colour, status or maybe the way the person died? Hassan was a young man in his twenties who had nothing but shy smiles. and an ever present willingness to help out. He never once complained about anything in the all-too-short three years I knew him.

A modest man, he was mannered enough to know when to lower his gaze, how to stand by the door to give his salaams, his thank youspurred you on to give more and his friendship was craved and cherished by the children, he was never too busy for them... Hassan was our maiguard (Gateman), he was also a friend and a member of the family. .. Hassan died just when he was set to make something of his life, start a business and most likely get married.

Kareemah ... what was special about her? Her mother, who is admired and loved by many? The manner and circumstances under which she was conceived and born, the sparkle in her eyes that made her look both cheeky and adorable at the same time? Her knock-your-breath-out intelligence and say-it-the-way-she-saw-it style (Sort of like a miniature of her mother many would agree!); That freshness of spirit? What is it that made it so difficult to accept that she had returned to return no more? Kareemah ... like a whiff of goodness that lingers on, she brought comfort and joy into lives.How is it possible that one who lived for 7yrs would leave behind so many grieving hearts? They say that her janazah was attended by so many people that it was difficult to believe that it was that of a small childs! Kareemah ... a gift of life ... thats how her mother described her as she broke the news of her death.

Who can understand why Hassan, Kareemah, mummy, daddy, sister, brother, son, daughter, uncle, auntie, friend, neighbour, that man round the corner, the woman who owned the shop in the next street; has to die? Is it easier to bear knowing that; "It is Allaah that gives life and death" (Q3Aali-Imraan]:16); or that, "It is Allaah that takes the souls (of men) at death: and those that die not (He takes) during their sleep: those on whom He has passed the decree of death He keeps back (from returning to life) but the rest He sends (to their bodies) for a term appointed." (Q39[Zumar]:42); and that this is so "that He may try which of you is best in deed" (Q67[Mulk]:2)? Allaah Says: "Wherever you are, death will find you out even if ye are in towers built up strong and high!" ... " (Q4[Nisaa]:78) and that "Even if you had remained in your homes those for whom death was decreed would certainly have gone forth to the place of their death" (Q3[Aali-Imraan]:154)

The Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said: "No servant will be a believer (in the true sense of the term) till he affirms his faith in four thmgs ... .faith in death and in the life after death ... " (Tirmidhi) What does our heart tell us when we listen to Allaahs Words; "That man can have nothing but what he strives for; That (the fruit of) his striving will soon come in sight; Then will he be rewarded with a reward complete; That to your Lord is the final Goal; That it is He who Grants Laughter and Tears; That it is He who Grants Death and Life" (Q53[Najm]:39-44) Do we then believe and say with unshaken conviction that; "Truly my prayer and my service of sacrifice my life and my death are (all) for Allaah the Cherisher of the Worlds" (Q6[Anam]:152)

Can one ever say goodbye? Maybe not! But we can dry our tears and find succour in the dua'a of the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam); "O Allaah, forgive those of us who are living and those of us who are dead, those of us who are present and those of us who are absent, our young and our old, our male and our female. O Allaah, to whosoever of us You give life grant him life as a believer, and whomsoever of us You take in death take him in death as a follower of Islaam. O Allaah, do not withhold from us the reward (of faith) and do not lead us astray after his death." (Abu Dawood)


This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited

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