Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Dear Friend

My friend's husband passed away approximately 4 days ago after spending a few weeks in coma.  This letter is dedicated especially to her.

Dearest Dibah,

I don't know where to start as I don't know what to say.  As much, I don't want to sound cocky by saying, "I know how you feel", or "I understand", or "I've been there".  But I have.  I truly have.

I am sure, too, that you are perhaps almost tired of all the condolences received. All the cliches and all the words of advice. Because it happened to you, and not anyone else.  Not forgetting, those remarks that may have been meant well but only turned out to be a little inappropriate.

Forgive me for not visiting when I should have. Not when he was in the hospital.  Not even at his funeral. I was perhaps the most selfish and inconsiderate person to not be there. But I chose not to be there because it hurt too much.

I feel your sorrows, your frustrations and your anger.  I understand the feeling of emptiness that envelopes you every time you turn and see that space next to you.  I can hear loneliness echoing in that petite body of yours. I sense the sheer sadness that glooms over you when you realise that he is no longer physically here with you.

He is gone.

So, do cry, my dear - with the tears that will never stop streaming down your cheeks, day and night.  Let those tears wash away your sadness, fears and sorrows.  Let them trickle and drench yourself because that is the best medicine of all!

Yet all is not lost.

When my late husband was diagnosed with cancer of the esophagus at the advanced stage more than six years ago, my heart shattered into pieces.  The only thing that kept me intact on the days that followed was what my dad said to me: "Believe in the Divine Will and Decree" (Percaya kepada Qada' dan Qadar).  And that was what I repeatedly chanted to myself, as a reminder that would help me snap out of my hazy days.


I want you to grieve today.  And the day after. And the day after. You have 4 months and 10 days.   It is the time He has given to us so make the best out of it.  Feel sorry for yourself.  Sit down and spend your time looking at all the photos and videos you've taken of him and of yourselves, together.  Embrace it all. Absorb them.  You are in bereavement.

Use the time to think of tomorrow. Of whether the sun is going to shine, or the postman's going to come and bring you some good news.  Think of what you are going to do when you feel hopeless without your Gentle Giant to help reach out to the impossibly high shelves when you need someone to.  Yes, the days will no longer be the same.  From now on, you are forced to accept the change.  No matter how unpleasant it is.

But you know what, Dibah?  If you accept this change with great contentment (redha), then, He will ease it for you.  He will keep His eyes on you and help you sail through, lest the hiccups and the stumbling up the stairs.  For He has blessed you with great companions: your children, family and friends.  They may not be the same as your very own soul mate, but collectively, they make excellent remedies on dreadful days.  Well, at least that was what happened to me.

I know that you will actually be fine.  In time, perhaps.  InsyaAllah...

Make him proud by being the best of you because that's what made him love you so much.

Hugs, love and kisses,

Kak Dij

1 comment:

nanrfz said...

salam kak D. don't know if you remember me. we don't know each other in real life but our experience brought me to your blog 7 years ago. Was checking out k.petiteandpowerful's blog the other day and saw your comment. your letter here brought tears to my eyes. somehow it gives me a 'nice' feeling to know that someone can understand and describe what i felt and feel. take care kak.