Was it really only yesterday when the shittiest day of my living history occurred?
The fatal phone call from my mother early in the morning as I stepped out of the gym, hearing the tragic, unbelievable news. Screaming out on the street and falling in a heap on the curb, where I could no longer bear to hear her sobs for mine had taken over.
How I somehow, despite the shock, managed to drive back home, the whole time with a friend on hands free – being my rational conscience and guide – calmly telling me that just as it was okay to let the other motorists take over, so I needed to do the same with my grief.
Hugging my husband so tight because the pain in my chest was too much to bear on my own. Repeatedly asking him to tell me that none of this mad nightmare was true. The fact he couldn’t reply with what I wanted to hear, made me slowly come to realize that this wasn’t a cruel, terrible joke.
This was reality.
A beloved family member – someone who was the closest thing I ever had to a sister – is gone. Just like that – in one swift, merciless swoop.
The endless circle of questioning this pain and injustice; why bad, terrible things happen to such kind, caring, benevolent people.
It doesn’t make sense. It challenges my faith.
I’m furious at this screwed up world. I’m terrified that in this same place of endless tragedies and unpredictable danger, I’m trying to raise my own children with self-confidence and independence.
Yet, it’s in my faith where I find my strength.
I see the unconditional love; subtle yet significant ease and comfort that comes with sharing a heavy, laden burden of sadness among family and close-knit community; the unshakeable faith that their God will stay close by, carrying the suffering through to an eventual sense of inner peace and the hope that we will all meet again one day.
Within a couple of hours of hearing the tragedy, relatives from all corners of the globe made immediate plans to support a grief stricken family. There, right there: concrete evidence of human kindness and the power of unwavering loyalty.
While frantically figuring out the logistics and ticket reservations over constant phone calls and Facebook messages, we can all cry together, reminding each other’s integral part of this vast family circle.
I need to try and be thankful for blessings, even if they are unforeseeable right now.
And I guess that’s what faith is. Trusting that somehow, everything will be okay.
Never the same again. But okay.
As a wise friend told me, death ends a loved one’s life but it can’t stop the loving relationship we have with them.
And there, we find solace.
Selamat jalan, my beloved Kak Rytha.
May you rest in peace and tranquility.
Until we meet again.