What can a six year old child do? He'd be able to read, write, count and sing. It's an age of initial independence filled with a knowledge-hunting mission; stepping into pre-school and for some, anxiously into primary school. By six, a child would be able to do some things on his own such as hanging up his clothes and washing his own plate.
Six years and three months ago, my husband of eleven years passed away, leaving behind four children in my care.
Alhamdulillah, I have thus learnt to scale down everything so that things are manageable and stress-free. I am the north and south of my children; the father and mother to three boys and one girl. I gave up a lot of things - material and personal. It goes without saying that the biggest trial of all is bringing up the
children. The challenges come in from various directions; emotional, physical,
psychological, spiritual, and financial. No matter what, and no matter how, I juggle with the physical demands and most of the time, fall enslaved to my emotional whims.
Yet, what did people say about me? They said that I was strong. Very, very strong. How they judge this is beyond my own discernment. How could I appear strong, when my feet were always wobbly, and my heart, always jittery? How was I strong when I was always hopelessly in tears, asking Him to give me strength to live every single day?
Many things have happened during the period of six years and three months and I, for one, am no longer the same as the person I was before. There's some good in it, Alhamdulillah, and also some disadvantages.
The good thing behind it all is, I am now closer to Him - Allahu Akbar. The difficulties in life - the loss of my soul-mate, the trials of bringing up four children, etc - are merely reminders that He sets for me. I am now more responsible for my actions and am also hopefully, more resilient (oh, please let this be true, and not just a figment of my imagination!).
However, the down-side of it is, I have lost any urge to dream. My hopes are all related to my children and my ibadah. I live my life, not caring much about the nitty-gritty of things. I no longer have any material aims.
Do I still miss him? Oh yes, I do... If I close my eyes, I can run scene upon scene of days with him. The laughter, the joy, the jokes! My heart would throb at the thought of him; aching because he has left big gaps in my life. Nonetheless, six years is a paradoxical period of time: so long ago but then again, wasn't it just yesterday? Nevertheless, I now understand what the phrase "time heals" means. Visions of the daily routine sans him gets clearer and somewhat easier, as I learn the ropes and lower my expectations. So yes, I CAN live without him by my side. He who was my motivator, my driving force and my saviour. How? I have now shifted my total reliance and dependency towards the Almighty Allah, the One and Only Ar-Rahman Ar-Raheem. Something I should have done all along.
In six years, the children have grown and soon, I will be pulling my hair dealing with the empty-nest syndrome and hopefully, menopausal symptoms will loom in much much later! Oh boy... Having a blog is definitely therapeutic, even if I shy away from attention. Unlike raving writers who maintain blogs to be in the lime-light, I somehow prefer to be the opposite. The irony is, the more you resist, the more it comes closer to you.
Ergo, I have resumed writing because I have decided to step out of my shadows. I am going to stop lurking in the dark and hold on strongly to my reins, maneuvering my life in the direction I am to go (even if I don't know where that is).
What I write here are my own reflections, as this space is where I pause and breathe and gain strength. May Allah ease it all for us...