Wednesday, September 24, 2014

When They Are Gone

  As you all would have known, i pernah lost someone very dear & close to me. My brother, died at such young age of 18 to a serious & incurable illness. I was so devastated and distraught. Even till now i avoid to think much about it especially about his long term hospitalization and suffering.

But losing someone and gone through all the devastations and sad phase has thought me lots. It change my perspective in life. It is true that Allah give us trials to make us learn. Semua ada hikmah, whether you realize it or not. 

I wish to share with you all what i learn result from this. I hope they are beneficial.

  • Grief. I no longer thinks that people who grief at funerals are weak or people who doesn't are pious. For instance, when my brother passed away, i am among my family that cried less at the hospitals or funerals. Not because i am pious or stronger than the rest. It is because i just not good at showing emotion in public unless dah tak boleh tahan. But when i cry, i really really cry intensively just to let it out from my system. I cried alone in my room, in the toilet, when everyone is asleep. I cried everytime my brother conditions deteriorate, when my mother called me crying, when my brother in comma, when the first time i found out he was no longer with us. See, everybody grief in their own space & time, some do it in public and you see them constantly breakdown and cry. And some like me. So now, when i see someone grief, i just pat her/his back and say 'it's ok, let it out, cry' not the usual 'be strong, sabar' because the sooner you get over the crying & grieving phase you will  fee better and stronger. Please let them cry, we are not robot. 

  •  Material. When someone dies, after all the funeral and burial we are left with their possessions. The older someone dies, the more stuff he/she accumulated. Same thing with my late brother. Because he was still young, a student and still live with my parents, the things that he left us are mostly clothes & books. As i gone through all of his stuff & notes it made me realized that all the material things you accumulated when you are alive are useless when you died. All the designer bags, posh cars, fancy clothes, expensive gadgets or your hobby are 100% invaluable to you and whoever inherit them won't appreciate it as much as you do. So why we obsess with them so much? Now, i try to avoid accumulating stuff that i 'think' i will use or buy things just because i like them but not beneficial whatsoever. And i also will not give any sentimental value on any material, which makes throwing your stuff when they are no longer in use easier.

  •  Rituals. As a muslim, when someone passed away we have kenduri tahlil & recites Yassin. After that we will constantly do doa for the dead and sedekah bacaan al-quran, hoping that the dead will benefits from it. I believe, the only things that matters to afterlife of a dead person is the doa & deeds of their children (whatever good deeds & value we have thought them) and all the sedekah & charity we did when we alive. Others like kenduri tahlil, baca yasin, baca al-fatihah has no proves to be beneficial to the dead but just rituals. Anyhow, good things done will be granted pahala to the doer. I think we human always feels like we have to do something to the dead and actually gives therapy to the grieving family. This man-created rituals are more for the living than the dead. Don't burden the family for kenduri if they chose not to. Like when you recited yassin or al-fatihah in front of the grave. It is really unnecessary, you can recites it at home and it still beneficial. Grave is not a shrine where you pray, it is just a memorial. But.....let the grieving family do it anyway. Let them do all the tahlil and recitals and grave visits as much as they want. As long it is not syirik, just let them do it. This has made my mak feels better. It helps her feel connected. It helped her move on and hang to something because losing a son too soon is hurtful & the sadness is incurable. She still visits my brother's grave every friday and talk to the tombstone and cried each time till now, even after 4 years.

  •  Thankful. Always be thankful even during your lowest points. There are always things to be thankful for. Experience of seeing sick people lying helplessly on the bed makes my boring everyday routine seems major. Even you don't have money, look at your body all limbs attached perfectly, look at your kids all healthy & happy, look outside to see how peaceful the place you live in. When my brother was sick, he couldn't walk, in diapers, no appetite to eat, right there and then i feel insaf of what i took for granted all these time. Even being able to go to toilet everyday i thank Allah. Those simple things are the one value to us that money can't buy.You can simply thankful you are still alive, because you can still do good deeds, be beneficial to community and repents on your wrongdoing before you lie dead and everything are accountable within you and God. Now i seldom complain about life, i am more optimistic because i know somewhere someone who would want to switch life with me. So whenever i heard someone complains 'My life is hard' i have the itch to reply her/him 'Compare to what??'

The point of this post is not to preach. Not to prove i am expert in anything. Just to share from my perspective. I thought death was far from me before i lost my brother, now i always be reminded of it. Alhamdulillah for this trial, Allah take my love ones and lend me some wisdom to hold on to. I really hope my sharing beneficial for you.

p.s: I find the book 'Reclaim You Heart' by Yasmin Mogahed to be very useful in life. Makes you think of your priority in life and what really matters. Please read it, you sure won't regret it.

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