The day had begun as usual. Nothing out of the ordinary. Until the phone rang.
It was my sister in law. The one that was caring for their mum. The news did not strike me by much surprise. She had passed away in her sleep.
The kids by then had both left for school. I made a few calls to work, to my family and arranged the day to attend the burial. I was quite rational and clam. I had decided that the kids need not come as they were taking their semester exams. But as I got ready, I heard his voice whisper in my ear as he said "Ambiklah" (go get them). I froze for a good minute. What was I thinking? The kids were very close to her. She adored them, as they were her connection to her late son, as she was the main link to their late dad. The kids needed to say their good-byes.
I picked them up from school. Such bewildering looks in their eyes as they saw me at their schools. I explained what had happened. My son took the news as a man, shielding back the tears. The more I saw how hard he was trying, the sadder I became. I was the one that broke down into tears.
We managed to kiss her before her coffin was lowered into the grave. Her skin felt lifeless.
My late husband adored her with his life. Even as he was about to leave us, he reminded me to look after her well being after his funeral. Her passing today brought back unexplained feelings of loss. I feel we had lost a piece of him again today.
Al-fatihah to my mum in law and thank you to my parents, my brothers and sisters, friends who accompanied us physically and spiritually through another grieving day.