The story of a widowed, single mum

Asalaamualaikum all, I think by now we all have some understanding as to a single Muslim mother’s plight, how society blames her for the divorce and sadly in many cases, rejects her. However, have we ever stopped to wonder what it must be like for a widowed Muslim mum? I myself, used to think that they were above the petty hurtful remarks people made that society would actually regard them highly as survivors almost as if their husband’s had died war heros. Surely they too, wouldn’t be blamed in any way for the end of their marriage because death is a natural thing?

One sister very kindly has narrated her story for us to show us how the life of a widow can unfold and the problems they may face. I ask Allah swt to give my sister in Islam, sabr and sukoon and strength and to make her and children one of the mo’mineen and to grant then all Jannatul Firdous. ameen. Please keep her in your duas, writing this and bringing back memories can’t have been easy for her but for the sake of education the Ummah and to please Allah swt she did this difficult deed and I greatly respect and admire her for this, I love you my sister…

“This is my story, I was 28 years of age when I became a widow with 3 young children. Nearly a year ago.

It was Sunday night & my husband who was a fit & healthy young man aged 28, told me to take the children upstairs & put them to bed because it was a school day in the morning after a half term holiday.

I took the kids to bed & was so tired I fell a sleep with them. A few hours later I woke to find my husband not in his bed, which was a little strange but thought that he’d probably fallen a sleep downstairs, so I decided to call for him & there was no reply so I got up to see where he was, & I found him in one of the the bed rooms on the prayer mat laying down, I told him to get up & go to bed but he didn’t seem to respond to me, I then dialled 999 & also rang my parents, Subhaan’Allah I don’t know how I rang these people & can’t remember what I said to them. All can remember is thinking to my self I need to wake up now, this dream is not nice, all of a sudden the door bell rang I went down stairs & opened it. The ambulance response team had come in & said “where’s the patient” I remember taking her upstairs where my husband was. & then Allah swt knows what happened next, all I can remember is that I was in hospital & my little bro (who is a year younger than me) was sitting with me in the relatives room saying In’Shaa’Allah everything’s going to be ok sis. I’m thinking what’s he saying & what’s happening. A few moments later a Doctor came into the room & said I’m afraid to say that he is dead. Till this day that echoes in my mind. I looked at my little bro & he just broke down & started to cry.

Any ways I was in a state of shock thinking what has happened & all these questions coming into my mind. That night my little bro bought me to my parents house from the hospital, my parents had bought my children to their house whilst they were still sleeping. I remember looking at my children thinking what am I going to tell them, because one minute their father is hanging out & having fun with them & all of a sudden there father has died…..

That night I just stayed besides my children & watched them whilst they slept, the morning came, they woke up, asking questions. ” why are we not home & how did we come to grandma’s house”???

I remember I sat my children down on the bed & told them “Allah swt has taken your dad away & we will never see him again.” I’m still thinking to my self I need to wake up from this dream whilst talking to them. Any ways I got the kids ready & took them down stairs. To my shock my parents had removed the sofa’s from the living room & there were family members sitting on the floor looking at us with pity & feeling sorry for us. I’m still thinking how an earth do I wake up from this dream now becoming a nightmare & feeling more realistic.

My mother explained to me & gave me some books about what to do when you become a widow. When your husband dies you have a waiting period of 4 months & 10 days called Idaat. This is what Allah swt has told us we have to do when we are in this situation, it consists of mourning your husband, not wearing brightly coloured clothing, or scenting your self, not wearing any make up or going in any gathering for that period. After that you are free to do what you want to Subhaan’Allah. I have to say that was very hard to deal with, considering I had 3 young children, who would eventually have to go back to school. I’m so grateful to Allah swt why he has given us this time. Otherwise I don’t know how We would deal with everything.

3 days later we had the funeral & we burried him here in the UK. Ma’Shaa’Allah so many people turned up for his funeral. Everyone was coming and giving their condolences. I remember I didn’t know how I felt & I couldn’t understand any of it. I was in a state of shock, I just stared at him when his body came & I couldn’t cry, I tried, but the tears wouldn’t come. I just sat there like a statue. I couldn’t say anything. I remember people would come over & say things to me but I couldn’t understand them, all I saw was there mouths moving &felt as if they felt pity for me. All I kept thinking was I need to wake up from this nightmare.

Family & friends came over and brought food (I’m so grateful to everyone Ma’Shaa’Allah). They kept insisting that I should eat, but that was the last thing on my mind,

Everyone was looking at me feeling sorry, telling me “It’s going to be alright & You have to be strong for your children. You are not only a mother to them but now you are also a father to them”. At first that was a scarey thought…..

……..Now, he’s gone. What do I do?

A few weeks went by & I had voices in my head of what people had said. Family & friends would talk about me in front of me as if i wasn’t there, saying things like “people just don’t die”. Doubting me, making me feel as if I was to blame for what had happened. I remember at one point I actually started to blame myself, thinking “if only……..”. I used to cry whilst praying to Allah swt asking him to prove to people that I am innocent, all I asked of Allah was to show in my husbands post mortem results that what ever had happened to him was the doing of Allah swt & it had nothing to do with me. I could feel as if everyone was pointing fingers at me & doubting me.

I remember looking at my children in my mothers living room where they were sitting down looking sad, confused & as if they had enough of people feeling sorry for them. So I called them over to me & asked them what they were feeling & what they wanted. My first born child who was 6years of age at the time said “mum I would like to go back to school”. My younger two who were 3 & 5 years of age at the time said they wanted to go home & sleep in there own beds.

My heart melted & broke at the same time when they told me what they wanted, because there was me lost in my own little world & nobody else thought about what my kids wanted or what they were feeling. Then it hit me that I should move back home & try to get on with our so called life. I told my mother that we wanted to move back home but my mother insisted that we should stay another month with them & do Ramadan, then I should re-think my situation.

It was now 2 months since his death & we were still at mums house. Ramadan was round the corner.

Finally it was first day of the holy month of Ramadan, I woke up nice and early like I used to. Went down stairs & my parents were already there Ma’Shaa’Allah & had prepared food for keeping the fast. I sat down to eat & I was struck with deep emotions & I just broke down & burst into tears which where uncontrollable, my heart was mourning & my eyes where filled with so much tears that I could barely see what was in front of me. The memories of my husband came flooding back, l remembered last year in Ramadan when it was just me & him in our house preparing the food together for our fasts. We used to have a laugh & enjoyed each others company in that beautiful month Ma’Shaa’Allah. The kids would be fast a sleep in bed & we’d come down together & we’d talk about all sorts & make food together, Ma’Shaa’Allah were a beautiful team. The whole of Ramadan was so hard for me to cope with, even though my family was there, I still felt all alone & as if I had become a burden on them. Finally it was Eid day, I used to always make it special for my children, like decorating the house, having balloons etc. But this Eid was so hard to cope with I didn’t even bring clothes or presents for my children, luckily my husbands sister who lived near by had bought some clothes for them. Any ways it was the morning of Eid & I could smell food cooking, my mother had got up & had began to prepare & cook the food Ma’Shaa’Allah. I felt like I wanted to help her but emotions wouldn’t let me. Any ways I got the kids ready & my self & went down stairs, my parents insisted that we should go & Pray Eid prayer. So we went to the masjid me & my kids. We sat down together. The prayer was about to start & I just broke down & burst into tears, I lost control of my self, my youngest child was in my lap wiping the tears away from my eyes saying “mummy why are you crying?, please don’t cry”.i couldn’t take it any more & We just walked out the masjid & went back to my parents house. I just felt so alone & as if no one really cared about us.

Now it was 3 months after the funeral. I decided that we needed to move back home, just me & my kids. My family & friends would call or drop by, but they soon stopped & carried on with life as if nothing had happened. They would just say “move on with my life and look forward to the future.” I’d think to my self “what future?”.

6 months later……finally my husband’s post mortem results had come in the post to my house. I was alone that day when I opened the letter, my body was shaking & I felt numb, my heart was beating so fast & It felt like I had butterflies in my stomach. I unfolded the letter & started to read it. Subhaan’Allah the details that was written in that letter were amazing & all of a sudden I got my strength back & all I could remember was saying “Alhamdulillah thank you Allah for everything, Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon”. The results revealed that it was a natural cause that he died from. Finally I had proof to prove to people that were doubting me. But then I thought to myself let the people doubt me, I don’t care any more what they think, I dont need to prove anything to anyone. So I put the results away somewhere safe, so that when my children are older In’Shaa’Allah I can show it to them. I remember a relative came up2 me asking me if the results had come, I said yes they have come & then she said let me see them & I replied back saying NO! I have burned them (which I hadn’t), & I don’t need you to point fingers at me & accuse me of what you don’t know. That relative stood there with same & didn’t bother to say no more. Reality then hit home, I realised I was a single parent now & my husband wasn’t going to come back & that this isn’t a dream it’s reality.

As the days were going by I started to discover & realise new things about life, people & of course my religion. The main thing I’d discovered about Islam was that the glorious Quran had every thing written down from how to cope with stress, becoming a widow & how to raise your children etc, Subhaan’Allah. Allah had made it so much easier for us to deal with day to day things, yet we still find it difficult to follow. Another thing I realised was that never be dependent on any one & if you can’t do it your self at least try first then ask for help & there’s no harm in asking for help. I also realised who the true people are & who are just here for the drama, & of course most of them love to see drama & love to see you down, they can’t stand seeing you moving on with life. Oh by the way there was just a hand full of true people who where there for me from the start till this day Ma’Shaa’Allah.

Alhamdulillah days & months have gone by & we are starting to adjust to life, I have to say mornings are a lot easier to cope with now, by keeping myself busy, kids are at school. But when the night falls & silence is in the air, all I can hear is my thoughts getting louder & louder, that is the most hardest parts of my life, till this day the memories are so fresh & it’s almost going to be a year soon In’Shaa’Allah. Subhaan’Allah time flies by so fast but the memories stay. like they say times a healer, I hope so In’Shaa’Allah.

The fact is, we don’t want to forget him. We just want to be with him again In’Shaa’Allah. We know we’ll have to wait until the hereafter. With the mercy and forgiveness of Allah swt we’ll be reunited again in Jannah In’Shaa’Allah.

We really do miss him . . . !!!

The Quran says: “kullu nafsin tha-ikatul maout” (every soul shall taste death). And none of us knows where, when or how we will die.”

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