As a little girl, I would take out my parents wedding album, and dream of the day I married my Prince Charming…and live happily ever after. But what happens, when Prince Charming dies, and leaves you behind?
By the time, I matriculated from high school, I had long since learnt that fairy tales are not real life. As I grew into adulthood, I had no plans to marry and have children. So as the years stretched on, I concentrated on my career, and had other goals. In my thirties, I had an epiphany one day and felt the pull back to God. My plans consisted of my submission to God’s Will, and fulfilling the five pillars of my religion, Islam. My big goal was to perform the pilgrimage to Mecca, the Haj, around my fortieth birthday.
I started going for haj classes, and saving for the momentous journey which will enable me to fulfil the fifth pillar of Islam. Three years before I reached my goal, and with only half the fare saved up, I got an invitation to go for haj with my uncle and his family. I grabbed the chance, and came home a whole new person.
However, after a few years, the novelty of being a hajjaa (woman who’s performed her pilgrimage) had worn off and I no longer had a goal. So I found a new goal and that was to Travel. I was privileged to travel to the Middle East with my Mom and sis, and not long after, I met my Prince Charming through friends, and found myself getting married the next May Day. My groom was not princelike but more like Aladdin, a normal Egyptian from a poor family. Regardless, we happily married and have enjoyed being in each others lives this past decade.
When my Dad passed away, I watched my Mom carry on without him for seventeen years before she passed. She was her usual jolly self, but her spark had left, and she never got over grieving the loss of her Prince Charming. This past year and half, during the Covid pandemic, so many people have lost their life partners.
Last year, my Mom’s older brother, lost his wife when she died suddenly from natural causes. She left behind a husband who is lost without her. His children have been doing their utmost to make their father’s life easy and comfortable, but the spark has left him too, just like my mother’s had.
Since I wrote my last post, I found out that my Mom’s younger brother (there’s just the two brothers still alive), has end-stage cancer. He called my brother-in-law and asked him to pass along his news as he was too emotional to tell us himself. Unfortunately, we have not been able to visit with him due to the pandemic. This has caused us all a lot of stress. Nonetheless, it’s heart-breaking when we get news updates on his condition.
As I write this, I wonder what my Aladdin and I will do when we part forever…