The Mothers and the Girl who passed by
“Sorry Mr A, we had tried our best but she could not be saved”, Dr B told dad, the voice was deep and sad.
It was the thing she had been expecting for so long but she kept denying it day after day. Finally, after 4 years of agony, her mother could now rest in peace. Mother had been fighting breast cancer for 4 years. She was first diagnosed with it when R was in elementary school. As a girl who only knew her mother was nothing but just sick, she never felt the need to fear of her mother leaving her early. It was as she grew up, she knew that her mother was not just sick, instead, she was very sick. And being very sick meant she would not be in this world for long.
Leaving her mother’s dead body, her father and her younger siblings behind, she walked out of the room.
“Mother, why did you have to leave this early?” R monologued. Mother, she might leave this world but she never leave the heart of all those in that room.
R just ambled along the hospital’s corridor. Walking aimlessly, trying to knock some sense on herself maybe.
A mother was smiling weakly. Her flimsy arms were cuddling a baby. Family members were surrounding her, wearing happy faces. A man was cuddling another tiny baby , it was the father maybe. Just like the others, he was so happy.
That mother, before becoming a mother, she had to fight her own feeling as a woman for not being able to conceive baby earlier like everybody else. She was pregnant in their year of marriage but after 3 months, she suffered miscarriage. Another pregnancy came in the next year but this time, it was diagnosed as ectopic pregnancy. As a consequence the doctor removed her right ovary. It was a downfall for her marriage life as after the removal of her ovary, she suffered from severe depression.
“What if I could not conceive anymore after this?” Back then she had been repeatedly asking herself and by time it led to her depression.
But, the marriage was saved. They tried to lead a happy life just like before, both the mother and the father but not having a baby to brighten up their everyday life felt like a piece of puzzle was missing. Until one day, the mother was tested positive for pregnancy. After 6 years of marriage, their first child came and the arrival of the soon-to-be-twin was so much celebrated. Allah granted their prayer and added up more to it, she got a twin. Today was the 35th week of her pregnancy and early this morning she said she had light contractions. She was immediately brought to the hospital. She delivered normally but as the babies were prematurely born, they were quarantined. It was just know that they were brought to meet their mother and father.
After 6 years of waiting, how happy would the mother feel. Unimaginable!
R woke herself up from her pondering. Wiping her tears, R walked past that room, leaving the mother and the father in their happiness. She stumbled on a chair, regained her balance and quickened her pace towards the hospital exit.
The mother with the twin turned around, feeling the presence of someone outside. She caught a quick glimpse of the girl with the red scarf. The nurse maybe.
All sort of thoughts buzzed R’s head. “Maybe that’s how mother felt when she first got her, the first child”, R said to herself.
Being able to bear their own baby and seeing them being born into this world, every mother will feel the same thing; happiness.
R exited the hospital building, and her mind mulled over the memories she had with her mother. She remembered her mother crying silently when sending her to boarding school three years ago. R had always been an independent girl as she always wanted to do everything freely and by herself. When she got accepted in a boarding school miles away from home, she was so thrilled. Mother had always supported her decision and she agreed on her going there, but tears of a mother always came from the heart. The heart might not agree of living far away from the daughter but the mind might defy the heart saying it was good to train her children to be independent. So, after 12 years living as a spoilt kid, R left home to go to the boarding school. Although she lived far from home, R was a good daughter. She called every week, she went back home every month, she helped mother when she was home, she never oppose mother’s word and she always took good care of herself because that way, mother would not be worried and she would not make mother sad. But the thing that make R sad was, the time she shared with mother was too short. If only mother could live longer, she would be a better daughter and she would do her best to make mother happy. But, death and life have been decided by Allah. And as a Muslim, R knows she has to accept Allah’s ordainment for her and her mother. She knows she has to be thankful to Allah for all the things He has given including her mother.
R stopped a taxi. She blindly got into the taxi, her mind all blank and her heart heavy. The taxi stopped at the road across her home. It was 3.30 a.m. Father might be worried so she quickly sent a message to father saying she was already home. It was dark, everybody was still sleeping maybe but the home at the end of the road had already lightened up. She got out of the taxi and in a minute, she found herself standing still in front of Mrs K’s house. Her feet brought her to that home.
A mother was doing her Tahajjud prayer. After this she would be going to the kitchen to cook rice, egg and sambalpaste. She slept early last night as she got back pain all of sudden so all the works were delayed. In two hours, she had to send the children to school. Quickly, she started to cook. She peeked at the clock; an hour to go. Then she heard cries. It must be the youngest son J having nightmare so she quickly went to the bedroom finding J and coaxed him to sleep. She then quickly cooked the children’s breakfast. Fried rice it was. After settling the kitchen business, she went to iron her children’s uniforms. Her back ached again. Then she heard the door opened. Her husband just went home from work. The husband body seemed all worn out but he was still able to carve a smile for his wife. The mother quickly went to fetch her husband’s beg and helped her husband with his things. He worked overtime yesterday, so he might be very tired.
They were not rich. They were way beyond poor. With seven children, all still in school and the youngest at the age of 3 years old, they had to work hard to support the family. The mother was a housewife but as they were not financially well, she started a small business selling breakfast in front the house. The father was just a mere factory worker with an average wage of RM 2500 monthly. Life might be hard for them. Money might be hard to find. But, they knew that they just need to put enough efforts to overcome the problem. The mother knew as long as she worked the right way and with the right purpose, Allah would bless them and help them. The mother might feel tired; waking up early, working throughout the day and sleeping late at night. Still, she would be willing to do anything to ensure her children’s happiness. She would do anything for her love towards her children, and her husband.
A mother’s love is unconditional!
A honk woke R up from her slumber. She shook her head. How long had she been standing in front of Mrs K’s home, observing her routines. R liked Mrs K. R always envied that family. Despite of them being poor, they were very happy. And now R envied the family’s children because they still had their mother. The tears fall down, again. Then the car honked again. Twice. She turned her head towards the car. It was father. She wiped her tears.
Father told R to quickly walked to the house. It was dark and dangerous outside. R walked a few steps and reached home. As R reached home she went inside the home. Dad then came in, lifting O, then P and lastly S, one by one. Father seemed so weak and his face was so pale.Father then asked R to have some coffee with him in the living room. They sit there silently while sipping the coffee. Father told R to be strong and be positive. Father told R that mother was now gone so they need to let go. Father told R to pray a lot for mother and to be a good daughter because only these could help mother in the afterlife. Father told R that now she had a heavy burden on herself to help him taking care of her younger sibling. Tears fell down again. R nodded her head. They both then went to sleep with fear of what tomorrow might bring without mother.
3 months has passed since mother’s death and today is Mother’s Day. Now everything has returned to normal but without mother, there is always a void. Everyone has move on though the memories of mother always stay in their mind and deep in their heart.
Mother had sacrificed a lot before and after giving birth to them. Mother was not working so for 24 hours mother took care of them without being bored. Mother had never complained although she might be tired of taking care of them. Mother always wanted to provide the best food, the best clothes, the best education, the best environment and the best home. Mother always wanted to be the best mother for R and her siblings. Mother always prayed to Allah to bless her children, to grant her children with happiness, with intelligence, with success and to protect her children from the unwanted things. Mother always wanted them to live happily. If mother were able to provide her children with all the happiness, mother would be gladly doing that. If mother were able to give her children all the happiness she had, she would be doing so. Mother just love them so much, more than herself.
The word mother is so significant with love just like a quote in a book entitled ‘Room’.
‘A mother’s love know no boundaries’.
So, for all the sacrifices our mothers have made for us and for all the love and happiness our mothers have given us, repay them by respecting them, by talking to them with good words, by being a good daughter or son to them, by obeying them as long as it is not against Allah’s word, by taking care of them when they get old, by loving them unconditionally like they have always been to us and by praying for them all the time.
The Prophet Muhammad, may Allah’s peace and blessing be upon him also once said, ”Your Heaven lies under the feet of your mother.”
Happy Mother’s Day, mothers!
Atikah Binti Musa
Faculty of Medicine
Ain Shams University
Bureau of Publishing and Information (BPP)
PERUBATAN Ain Shams Chapter 2016/2017