Last week, I ended on the note saying, “Alhamdulillah“.
Today, I return and again I start with where I ended. Alhamdulillah.
I am in the throes of Covid along with my sons. We have all finally succumbed to this stubborn viral infection and none of us have escaped it this time.
So why the gratitude? Why praise Allah?
There are many reasons. Firstly, the fact that we are inshaAllah already in the recovery stage only a few days in, is a huge blessing in itself. When I recall how, just two years ago, this disease gripped the world and paralysed normal life and everything we once called ‘Normal’, it’s humbling to know that my sons and I came through that period unscathed – at least physically if not anything else. This time round, the new strain of the virus is less virulent and so we have only been slightly inconvenienced by it. The panic and stress we saw so many others endure is something we haven’t had to face, Alhamdulillah.
Then there is the timing of it all. My sons are home for the summer, in my presence and we at least have fallen victim to this virus together at the same time. Better to get it over and done with. With everyone having tested positive, we don’t even need to isolate at home; in a bizarre way, life has just continued on almost as normal. Of course, there will be the usual cleaning and fumigation en masse that will need to happen once we emerge virus-free at the other end, inshaAllah. So, as such it was with great pleasure that I sat with my sons over the last couple of days and completed a 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle. I had never found the right opportunity to do the jigsaw till now. But with Covid, my mind hasn’t been able to settle on reading or anything strenuous. A jigsaw was the perfect pastime! No doubt, every piece is now Covid-infected but the time it provided to sit and chat whilst putting it together, is something I am grateful for. It’s the small things in life that give so much pleasure…
Being stuck at home, without the opportunity to venture outdoors, has actually provided cherished moments to just reflect, sit and talk. The virus has knocked the wind out of our sails; we have all felt quite enervated physically and mentally and lack energy to do anything but the absolute bare minimum. Yet, the silver lining through this is that we have found more time to detach from our regular worldly distractions and just be in one another’s company. How Allah works in mysterious ways!
Funny how we think we have plans and then these are immediately scuppered by Allah’s Master Plan. I had no idea that this week’s blog would see me writing about my brush with Covid! Yet here I am and Alhamdulillah, I have been fortunate that it wasn’t worse. Any encounter with an illness is in itself an opportunity to take stock on life and yet again be reminded of the multitude of things we have to be grateful for. When the washing of a few dishes takes the breath out of me, that’s when I realise how much I have been blessed with every minute of every day of my life, Alhamdulillah.
So, having challenging episodes with health is a way of purging my own soul; it isn’t just an inconvenience supplanted onto my material existence. There is a higher purpose and if I fail to see that, then going through Covid will be nothing more than a reason to feel restless and frustrated. I’d like to think I’m not that myopic, inshaAllah.
The truth is, we are all holding onto life by a thread. Covid or no Covid. We delude ourselves into thinking that when our health is good, we have ample time to tarry on this Earth. That is the biggest fallacy ever. There is no rhyme or reason to how long or short a person’s life is. At this stage of my life, the appreciation of time is a deep one. Who I spend it with, what I do with it, when I do something etc. … These are questions that take on a whole different meaning when you know that the best part of your life is done.
Presenting my thoughts out loud here might seem a deeply personal thing to do – and it is. However, too many wasted opportunities have passed by with people being overly-conscious about the consequences. Valuable lessons have been lost in the wisdom they could have shared. When I am long gone, it is my legacy that I hope lives on and not the individual memory of my own life. It has got to be much bigger than that alone.