The colour drains from my face and the text message leaves me speechless. “Ur mamo passed away. Innalillahi wa inna ilaihi raajiun” That’s all it says. My maternal uncle had been really sick for the past few weeks and the news in a strange way, wasn’t completely unexpected. Yet, the earth seemed to shatter under my feet. Another person gone. The line is growing shorter and my turn comes ever closer, I think with a sickening feeling in my gut.
Who knows when it will be me they’ll be talking about? Someone somewhere will put my body in a pit and be repulsed by it – because it will be a lifeless corpse that freaks people out. Someone will throw the last handful of dirt upon my body – and will not take me back home but leave me to the harsh nature of weather, of heat during midday and extreme cold at night. People will cry, and then, just as soon as the tears came, they will run dry. Life on the earth will go on as before and I will lie inside a small enclosure, powerless to stop even a small insect from feasting upon my skin.
Soon I will be just another statistic of deaths and births and the mention of me will not invite even a sigh. Some memories mutilated by the passage of time will reside in some hearts but by and large I will be forgotten. This is the way of the world. A system which is precise and severe and has never spared anyone.
It’s best to realize it now, when your heart pumps blood and your mind deciphers and your senses work. It’s best to remember the fact that life, permanent as it may seem is a fickle friend and will not go on forever. The days which stretch before you seemingly endlessly are an optical illusion for the end lies close enough to see. Are our eyes blinded by the bling and glitz of life or do we choose to ignore the conclusion? A bit of both I guess.
I want to take things in my hand – I desperately want to do something that will ensure a happy ending. By happy ending I am of course referring to a pleasant life after death – doing something which will leave a mark in time – a mark that will be of immense importance. To leave footprints in the sands of time which will warrant the Maker’s happiness and maybe heal someone’s broken heart, alleviate someone’s pain and bring a smile upon lips which had well and truly forgotten how to smile. I, for one, shudder at the thought of facing the Creator’s wrath all alone in a dark pit somewhere. It’s not all bad though. The grave can be a garden amongst the gardens of Paradise for a believer. I know it’s coming, sooner than we think.