Salaams and Hello,
It’s lovely to be back with all you lovely people once again.
Ramadan has been both a busy month and an emotional month, as in amongst the usual change in timetable and goings on, we both celebrated the life of and mourned the death of my beloved grandfather, Abbajee.
He was a man of great stature, known for his spiritual and practical works in this duniya but I think ultimately, his secret good works were the making of him. We were given the glad tidings of Paradise by some very significant factors that occurred around his last few days, subhanAllah.
- He was ill and bedridden for the last few years of his life. His illness is a sign of forgiveness of sins and purification inshaAllah.
- The doctors told the family that the time was near so many family members were able to visit from near and far to say good bye; a sign of the righteous is that before they leave this world they are able to meet their loved ones.
- MashaAllah he lived to the ripe old age of 92 and according to Hadith ‘when he reaches 90, God forgives him his bygone sins and those to come and allows him to intercede on behalf of people of his family…’. SubhanAllah!
- He was given the beautiful blessed month of Ramadan to return to his Lord and of course, we believe the gates of Paradise are open for the blessed souls who die in this month.
- It was the blessed time of tahajjud at the time of his demise. His acts of nafl ibadah at this time were set in stone for most of his adult life. As Allah swt says, those acts which we carry out when we are healthy are counted for us when we are sick and unable. The return to his Lord at this time is befitting to the beautiful closeness he must have attained throughout decades of such devotion inshaAllah.
- He passed away on a Thursday and the funeral was held on a Friday after Jummah mashaAllah!
- The janazah was carried out at the mosque that he’d sat for itikaaf at, on three separate occasions, even though it wasn’t his original home town. The same mosque that, when greeted with Jummah Mubarak on a Friday he would always express his desire to join in the prayers there. He was given a last Jummah and his desire was fulfilled that day, subhanAllah!
- He spent the blessed night of Jummah, Thursday night, inside the mosque, his hands folded for prayer.
- His face on his last day on earth was positively blooming with noor mashaAllah.
- After he was buried, in a wonderfully purpose-built Muslim graveyard, it rained at just the right moment, subhanAllah- as if the earlier signs weren’t enough, he was given this beautiful blessed sign of forgiveness too.
AlhamduLillah! For these reasons and many more, the souls of his many loved ones were comforted by his departure.
We were very blessed to have had him for so long alhamduLillah; as some of you know, he was living at my parent’s house and we saw him often. The last few years were very tough as he was bedridden. We are so sad for our loss as we will miss him so much but inshaAllah for his soul, it is the beginning of an entirely new journey subhanAllah.
I think it is human nature to want everything to remain the same and everyone we love to remain with us. But everyone has to go one day. We have no complaints. May Allah give him the highest station in jannah inshaAllah and may we all be given such a beautiful ending.
Lessons to be learnt:
- Patience is rewarded with magnificent mercy. Abbaji went through many hardships in his life, one of the most significant being the loss of his beloved wife, twenty seven years earlier. This beautiful pious woman, connected to us from my dear mother’s side of the family too mashaAllah, whom I still remember giving us multiple kisses on each cheek in greeting when we were younger, was a great loss to the whole family including my very young aunties and uncles. My grandfather never married again and some say it was on account of his bounteous love for her. What we can take from this is that the closest to Allah are tested and so to be patient and to have a good opinion of Allah are both great ways of moving forward and gaining greater benefit, increasing one’s station and reward with Allah inshaAllah.
- To never underestimate the power of Allah in attaining answered duas. We were very blessed to witness the many blessings in Abbaji’s death and they were a sign to those around him that Allah is Generous and Merciful and never lets His devoted servants down in terms of rewarding them in return for good deeds, steadfastness and devotion. May we be of those who remain close to Allah, adhere to His deen and attain closeness in this life and the next inshaAllah ameen!
Those of you who knew Abbaji, please comment below with your personal stories and reflections. I’d really appreciate it inshaAllah.
So that’s it from me for now,
Until next time,
Peace and Love,
PS To help me on my journey to enoughism not only will I will write down 3 things I am grateful for at the end of each post but in an effort to be true to you all and not paint false pictures of perfection, I would also like to mention 3 things we’ve had to work through this week, as a family. So here they are:
1. The children want to fast and it’s not only difficult waking them up but also, I’ve had negative feedback from other parents reminding me that it’s not necessary. I’ve struggled to strike a balance with having children who are upset that I didn’t wake them up for suhoor (and fasting anyway!) and those who need encouragement to keep them (ahem!). I managed to encourage the ones who were adamant to fast no matter what, to keep a water fast or to give themselves a break half way through, alhamduLillah that’s worked. The child who needed encouraging is being tempted by special treats at iftaari and recognition for big efforts. Please pray for us as we navigate this together! May Allah make every year easier.
2. Making time for myself has been difficult this month. I had to keep reminding myself that an empty vessel is unable to serve. I think it’s common practice to want to make the most out of this month but we need to remember to replenish our own ‘self-care tanks’, otherwise the pile of dishes, after iftaari has been enjoyed, will be nothing short of depressing!
3. Making time for my book has been difficult this month due to other obvious priorities but it’s OK. I know there’s a time and place for everything and I’m trying to be OK with snippets of time here and there on it. It has got be enough for now.
And now for 3 things I am grateful for:
1. I love that I’m able to process my grief in many different ways, one of them being my writing. I’ve been participating in the #vss365 twitter challenge (Very Short Story 365 days a year) and I have a couple of pieces on Abbaji to share with you.
2. The act of reading Quran is something which we have learnt that benefits the soul of the deceased. Not only does it strengthen Iman, soothe the soul and reach the deceased as a gift, it is also a means of closeness to Allah and an act of Ibadah that is hugely encouraged in Ramadan. Please recite a Fatiha for my Abbaji and may Allah swt send the reward as a gift to the Prophet ﷺ and all the Muslims of the ummah inshaAllah ameen.
3. This is the first Ramadan in many that I’ve been able to fast properly (alhamduLillah!) and one of the first ones after what seems an age that I’ve actually had time to rest and reflect in between jobs, so alhamduLillah I’m very grateful for that. As my youngest is now nearly 2, I look forward to the ease and opportunities this brings in terms of practical jobs completed in a day! Please pray for me!
I hope you’ve enjoyed catching up with me and reading this post,
Lots of love n duas.
P.S.S Don’t forget, my book Finding Peace Through Prayer and Love, published by Beacon Books is already out via Amazon. Check it out today!