Iya Alariya: Loss, Grief and Shivers…

I had just finished the dawn prayer weeks ago and about to return to my warm bed when the news came of the passing of màmá, my maternal grandmother, a world away in Nigeria.

Since then I’ve been thinking a lot about loss. See, I consider myself as a very young man in regards to life experiences of adverse nature or loss.

The death of Ìyá Alariya was in a sense the closest loss l’ve come to experience as an adult. Yes, màmá was fondly called ìyá Alariya because she was fun to be around. She had a way of making people laugh.

These past weeks, sometimes when I’m driving or just sitting at work or home, she would come to mind and the reality of her departure, mixed with a tinge of sadness, would hit me softly.

These sudden momentary episodes of sadness make me wonder how painful the loss of spouse, children and loved parent would be, and I shiver over the thought alone. Ya Salaam.

She was my mother’s mother. We were close in my years of growing up. Whenever she visited us, she came bearing gifts. She was in a sense ascetic. She loved to pray nafil. She loved to fast. She loved dhikr. And God blessed her with hajj.

I have only one grandparent left in this world and I shiver everyday. Also, I’m trying to prepare my mind for the eventuality while praying to God that we succeed her and that she be given more time contingent upon good living.

I miss Iya Alariya. My daughter didn’t get to meet her. And her death reminds me of the ephemerality of life itself.

Màmá is currently in a suspended state of being – Barzakh – awaiting the Day all humans will be brought back to life for reckoning. In this state, only a handful of things benefit her.

So please say a prayer for Màmá or recite a portion of the Qur’an, like surah fathia or other short surahs, with the intention that the rewards be given to her.

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