Tuesday, 3 July 2007

When pillars fall

(There won't be a third part to "More on the previous stuff" installment. After much thought, I don't think there anything significant to be added.)

I am lost for words last week.

My old neighbour from childhood, Uncle Karim, passed away Monday last week. His children were my friends back when we lived in Terengganu. Uncle Karim and my father were colleagues and golfing mates. For the last 15 years or so, both of us live only 20 minutes apart.

It is wrong to smile a lot at a funeral? I was the only thing I could manage to do right that day.

When we got to Uncle Karim's house after hearing about his death, my father went and hugged his sons (his are all boys, 6 of them). I haven't seen them in about 16 years. I thought about whether I should hug them or not, and I froze. I shook their hands instead.

I sat next to Ooni, the eldest son. He and I were the closest and we only have a year's difference between us. But he was busy repeating his Yaasin as much as he can for his dear father. I waited for a chance to talk to him.

Everything was done quickly. The jenazah van came about an hour before Asar, and by Asar Uncle Karim's jenazah was already wrapped in kafan. I stood on the edge of the crowd as his boys helped with the process.

When azan for Asar was called I walked to Ooni and he hugged the tears out of me. Abang Ooni is now a father and a husband and he is as calm as ever. He was sad, I can tell, but he could not let the feeling of lost get in the way of preparing his father for the journey ahead. He thanked me for coming. Suddenly I was hearing Uncle Karim's voice in my head, the conversation he had a few weeks ago. My heart was gripped with the realisation of him no longer being with us in this world.

By 6pm, everything was settled. He went back to his house. Uncle Karim's wife and mother were patient throughout the ordeal. It was kind of healing seeing them braving such a great lost.

And it is a great lost, for me. Uncle Karim was one of the persons whom I look up to. He was the good neighbour, the kind of person who is honest and always showed care for others.

This blog is somewhat a grieving mechanism for me. Here I've already wrote about the death my neighbour Pak Ad, my aunt and my grandfather. I've just realised this recently.

What all these people have in common is they are good people. The kind you wouldn't hesitate to call "good". Their kindness and selflessness shined upon the people around them. Their departure leaves a large, gaping hole in other people's lives including mine.

The are the pillars in my life. They are the ones who showed me that what we do and how we treat others do matter. They show me that we can make a different in the world, in people's lives, without realising it, by doing the right thing. Even when doing the right is very difficult.

I'm slowly feeling the effects of their absence. A world without them is a changed one. But I am powerless against this change.

However, I do see now what I do. I must become a pillar myself. Not by feeling that I am one, but by doing what I need to. Even when it means doing the difficult things. May God help me and all of us, insya-Allah.


ieka said...

adat dunia sementara, yang datang pasti pergi, yang hidup pasti mati.

innalillahi wa innalillahi rajiun.

harap2 masa kita pergi bertemu Tuhan nanti ada orang2 yg mengingati kita sebagai orang2 baik; sbb teringat satu hadis yang mengatakan penyaksian org2 yg hidup ke atas org2 mati akan jadi bukti di hadapan Allah SWT.


rol said...

Benar tu.

Bila orang-orang baik yang pergi, kehilangan mereka amat terasa...

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