I’m extremely sad right now. The calm on the surface is hiding the currents that are creating a havoc underneath. Gotta be okay with not being okay, eh? I just quoted Chris Evans from Before We Go. I’ve been saying in my blogs that a lot has happened since the start of 2017. But I’ve been equally lazy to not write it down. I wanted to, but I just couldn’t. There was a lot. I didn’t have the will. Something happened today that just.. I can’t keep it in. I need to let it out or else I won’t be able to focus on my assignment. This needs to get out of the way. Let’s go back to the beginning.
January 2017. My folks and I, we were happy to leave. We had our visas at a hand’s length. Allah taa’la had called us all to his place. We were going to perform Umrah. One of my mother’s last wishes was going to come true, finally. We reached there on the 13th of January. According to the plan, we had one week for Madinah, one for Makkah and then except three members of the family (Me and my both parents) everyone was supposed to go back to Pakistan. We had a week for Jeddah, for shopping and stuff that we hadn’t had the time for in Madinah and Makkah. All three of us arrived at our cousin’s place who was then residing in Jeddah. Everything was okay until when two days later my mother started feeling sicker than ever. The next three days, she had an oscillating condition. A day before we were supposed to catch our flight back home, she lost her consciousness. We got to know later on that she’d had a Cardiogenic Shock. She was a cancer patient then, I think I forgot to mention that. Seven hours before we were supposed to leave for the airport, she was admitted into an ICU on ventilator – where she stayed for a month and two days. I stayed with my heartbroken father in Jeddah for a week after she was admitted until my brother arrived again. She didn’t come back to senses when I was still there. I had to leave for Pakistan since my sister was alone at home. I traveled alone for the first time in my life. I had a feeling that this was a foreshadowing of some sort. And it was. I managed the house alone, took care of my sister and tried to get my academic year back to track. We’d get information on my mother’s health on phone, but a part of me always told me to keep my expectations low and to not lose hope. A month passed by, and on 4th March, my mother celebrated her birthday in an ICU. The word celebrated here is used for some other reason. She went through tracheotomy on the same day and showed improvement. Two nights later, the nurse informed my family that she had passed away. Her cancer had developed and enveloped the space in her lungs and was going to attack her brain next, which might have resulted in memory loss had she lived. She died of the second heart attack that she could not tolerate. My mother left after fighting a five years long battle. It was a huge loss. But Almighty somehow gave me and my family enough patience to get through it. I miss her with every breath that I take, but I’m glad that she is now free. I’m hoping that she’s having fun up there. May God bless you with the best of ranks in Jannah, Ammi. Ameen.
March 2017. I lost all my will to go back to university. I proposed the idea of dropping out to my father which he refused. Then came the struggle of saving my semester. I had to cover all my assignments in three weeks time, just like The Art of Getting By. I read all my course books in 24 hours before each exam. Alhamdulilah got through it as well.
May 2017. One of my stories, “Dreams and Visions” was published in a departmental magazine called Zau. It was an accomplishment until I forgot about it being an accomplishment.
June 2017. Semester break had started. I had started to get my courage back in place to look at photos of my deceased mother. One night, I stayed up till Fajr and collected all of her photos in a folder in my old laptop. I extracted some of my old photos too and got the folder ready to get transferred to my new laptop, once I had bought a USB of a larger capacity. I bought new art supplies and improved some of my skills. I also put together the house back in place. It seemed all torn out ever since Ammi had left. Got rid of stuff and sorted it all out.
July 2017. The only big memory of this month was my first ever surprise birthday party because it made me cry tears of joy. My friends did an amazing job there and I’m glad that they tried to make me feel better.
August 2017. Life was like, something bad hasn’t happened to you in a while, right? Lets put your patience to test again. Yesterday my sister broke this news to me without any preparatory consolation, “Aapi, the hard drive of your old laptop is gone. We need to get a new one.” Guess what? Another huge loss of this year and my life. I lost approximately 23.6 GB of photographs that I had taken from September 2011 to January 2017. Six years of photography, gone and buried, never to be found again. Even Ammi’s photos from 2005 to 2016 are gone that I had gathered on a horrible tear-filled night some two months ago when I stayed up till Fajr. All I’m left with is some traces of 2014 in my Google Drive and every photo of 2017 in my phone. Thank goodness that I hadn’t cleared up my photo gallery despite every reminder. My heart is beating out of my chest right now. I just can’t. I want to cry but its no use. They won’t come back. A part of my life that I could remember only through photos is now gone. Since Ammi’s death has left me with very poor memory and an exceeding-the-scale tolerance. I’m calm, but only I know what’s gone. I don’t know when I stopped reacting at things.
Letting go is not easy. I was thinking that it might be since I got over a lot of things in the near past. But this. This requires me to learn the art of letting go in its entirety. Guess I’ll be more focused on my assignment now, since I’ve gotten this out of the way. Ah. Sigh.
(Side note : Pray for my Ammi, if you can. This artwork belongs to my amazingly talented friend Mahoor, so beware of the copy rights. Also, Hi again. I’m back from the state of hiatus.)