*Musings: A period of reflection or thought.
I was never the kind to delete a phone number after someone close passed away. I would always hold onto it as if miraculously I’d realize it was just a terrible dream and my person was still there with me. Alive. Healthy. Never any better. That’s how I held onto mama two’s contact until I lost it when I changed phones. It was always like a souvenir where I’d open her contact details and just stare at them longingly. Grief does that to you sometimes. You ruminate on how she could have been now, what she’d be doing, how she’d react to your growth and achievements and what she’d have said on different occasions. You remember how she’d call when you were late home and lovingly say, ‘my baby’ whenever you picked up the phone. You’d remember how she’d fill your bedroom wall with hand-written motivational quotes for your studies. You’d remember how she’d sacrifice her sleep to wake you up to study late at night. You remember a lot of things…
However much time passes, her memory is always there. Like a stubborn stain on a cloth. And everything and everyone reminds me of her. I recently met mama two’s very old friend for the first time. She looked young and healthy and she was very bubbly mashallah. My first thought was, so this is how she’d looked (age-wise) had she been alive to date? She died so young, didn’t she? Is this how charming she would have been with my nieces and nephews had she met them? I bet she would have been so for she was the most loving and caring aunt ever.
The grief follows me around always but sometimes I dream of her. Once she was combing my hair like how she’d do when we were young, another time she was seated with me in the backseat of a car and she was holding me close; my head on her chest, another time she kissed me on my cheek. Whenever I’d have these seemingly very real dreams, I’d ask her, ‘But aren’t you dead?’ That’s always the question, but I never get a response. When I’d wake up from such dreams, I’d be emotional but also very happy because it feels like a gentle squeeze of my hand. Like a reassurance that she is okay (I pray she is). That she is with me even if far away.
I always regard these dreams as Allah’s mercy on me. That Allah knows how much I miss her so He brings her into my dreams so that it can comfort me. So that it can give me joy, even for a short moment. And it warms my heart that Allah keeps gifting me these beautiful dreams of her. The thought of it makes me wonder how much more Allah Subhanahu Wataala can be merciful to me? To us?
Many times we think of Allah’s mercy in terms of repentance and forgiveness such that sometimes we overlook these seemingly ‘small’ mercies of His. Like when you’re having a terrible day and a message pops us where a good friend is expressing gratitude and love to you. Or when you’re very broke and He brings forth someone to purchase your goods unexpectedly. Or when you’re ill and Allah gives you relief by allowing you to pray seated or even lying down. Or when someone speaks well about your deceased loved one and it warms your heart. Or when you’re sad and feeling low and Allah grants you a job opportunity that you’ve praying for. Subhanallah, when you think deeply about it, we’re always in Allah’s mercy-one way or another.
I started a gratitude journal on my phone early this year. There were days I could easily write what I was grateful for -like when I graduated, or when my article was published, or when my books were purchased. Yet there were some long days, some mundane days too that I had to think for a while on what I was grateful for. Days whereby nothing extraordinary happened. But this is when you get to realize the small ways Allah comes through for you. Like when I was having severe anxiety and I couldn’t point out where the issue was exactly but Allah guided me to realize it and deal with it. Or on a very normal day and I got to buy something I couldn’t afford before. Or when I was sad and I had a very beautiful conversation with my mother and sister about life, it uplifted me. Or when a dua I asked for, a very long time ago was finally answered even though I had forgotten about it. This is all by Allah’s mercy. The relief we get. The joy we get. The love and compassion that others give us. The beautiful bonds we have with our families and friends. The good people who volunteer to help us without expecting anything in return. The unexpected rizq that we get when we have no money at all. The opportunities that open up for us. It’s all by Allah’s mercy.
The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Allah created one hundred units of mercy on the Day He created the heavens and the earth. Each one of them can contain all that is between the heaven and the earth. Of them, he put one on earth, through which a mother has compassion for her children and animals and birds have compassion for one another. On the Day of Resurrection, He will perfect and complete His Mercy”. (That is He will use all the hundred units of mercy for his slaves on that Day). [ Riyad as-Salihin 420]
Subhanallah, how amazing is our Lord? And if what we’re experiencing is just ONE UNIT of His mercy, how much more can we expect from Him on the Day of Judgment?
May Allah grant us His mercy and may we always be among those who identify it and appreciate it. May He enable us to be among His most Grateful servants.
May Allah have mercy upon our loved ones who’ve passed away. May He elevate their status and make their graves to be gardens from the gardens of Jannah. May He make them among the dwellers of Jannatul Firdaus and may He reunite us with all our loved ones there, Ameen.
Ramadhan Mubarak good people! I pray that your Ramadhan started well in shaa Allah. Talking about gratitude, I challenge you to download a gratitude app (I am currently using ‘Presently’, it’s free and works well for me so far) or get a small notebook where you note down every day, the way Allah comes through for you by His mercy. You’ll be amazed!
Also, for those interested in participating in charity for the poor, orphans, widows, the sick, indebted, reverts etc, kindly contact me at 0704 731 560, in shaa Allah I’ll directly link you up with deserving families.
May Allah accept our good deeds and make us firm in His deen. May our duas be answered most beautifully that He knows best. May He grant us relief from all our worries and distress and may He grant us forgiveness for all our shortcomings. Ameen ameen. Please do remember me in your duas 🙂