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Mother’s Day. A Sad Time For Some.

As many people appreciated and remembered their Mother yesterday, I recalled a very sad true story.  I will try to narrate the strength of the bond between a Mother and her children.

A young professional couple Ahmed and Fatima, had 2 young children Amjad aged 5 years and Aalia 3 years. Life was busy and hectic with work and looking after the kids. We were their friends and our children were also at similar ages.

They had moved to England from Pakistan about seven years previously. Their relatives were all far away and they lived in an English village, away from city life.

They had a wonderful life, couldn’t ask for any more. They had just purchased their first wonderful house and were occupied in redecorating it.

We would always get together in holidays and for the children’s birthdays.

Further good news came that the couple were expecting their third child.

During the early stages of pregnancy Fatima began to get more short of breath and developed an irritating cough. She put up with this, as she thought this was part and parcel of being pregnant.

When the symptoms increased she went to her doctor. After awhile a chest xray was organised it showed a mass on her lung. After being investigated by a respiratory specialist in hospital the diagnosis was confirmed as lung cancer.

This was devastating news for all of us, the family’s idyllic world had fallen apart.

Faitma kept strong for her children. They had to travel quite far for regular checks at hospital.

Fatima needed chemotherapy and radiotherapy to help reduce the size of the lung cancer. However this would harm her unborn child.

As only a Mother could, she sacrificed her own health for that of the baby inside her. She decided not to have the treatment until baby was born.

A Hadith of Prophet Mohammad(sa) states ‘Paradise is under the feet of your mother’.

At that time I believed that the bond between Mother and child is like no other.

After just 24 weeks of pregnancy a very premature baby was delivered by operation. A beautiful healthy girl was brought into this world, called Eira, weighing only 1 kg. Ahmed and Fatima were blessed with their third child.

Eira needed intense support initially in hospital but pulled through well.

Fatima went onto to have a period of chemotherapy and was hampered by the side effects.

Unfortunately the lung cancer was very aggressive and had spread too far and too quickly.

The vision of Fatima watching her tiny baby and two older children, knowing that she had only a little time to spend on this earth, was one of my most painful experiences in life.

Her strength and patience was exemplary. The children were too young to comprehend what was occurring.

At the age of 30 years Fatima passed away suddenly in hospital. Leaving her three children, with Eira barely a few weeks old.

‘Truly, to Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return.‘ (The Holy Quran, Surat Al-Baqarah 2:156)

The children kept asking when their Mother would return home, it was not to be.

Fatima was buried about 30 miles from her home in England.

Ahmad continued to work and brought up the three children, with the assistance of his elderly parents.

Now the children are 19, 17 and 14 years. They have been brought up very well and are outgoing, successful, all round teenagers.

Over time the memories for them may have slightly faded. But the loss will always be present. Allah Almighty gives us strength in the time of need. The loss of a parent, for any child can be devastating. Especially when in an unfamiliar country many thousands of miles from home and relatives.

Fatima we will remember you forever, as the bright, bubbly person you were. May Allah give you a place in Heaven. Ameen.

So we must appreciate and respect our Mother every day, not just on one day a year.

(The names have been changed in this true story)

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