What do you say to a friend who has lost someone that they loved, that they really, really loved, in the strongest, most affectionate sense of the word. What if they passed away unexpectedly. What if you called up your friend and could hear the trembling of their voice and their complete inability to stop crying. Has anyone ever been comforted by hearing, ‘I’m sorry’?
I don’t know. I remember that when my grandfather died I thought I would never smile, not ever again. I was fifteen, and it was the first time I had ever lost anyone, and although I had not been exceedingly close to my grandfather, and he had been ‘dying’ of cancer for the last few years, it was still a shock, and it was still painful.
Emotion is relative and grief can’t be measured. It hits you, washes over you in waves until you’re so far down that you can’t imagine coming up again. When you think of that someone being gone, really gone, then part of you dies as well. It’s possible to feel a part of your heart suffocating, giving up, and then blackening. You can feel yourself becoming bitter. You wonder why God would allow you to love a person so strongly when he was just going to take her away. Cruelty. It all seems like cruelty. That is, if you think of her as gone.
She’s not. She’s not gone, darling, she’s just gone ahead. You will meet her again, and she will be fresh and young and alive. You and she will sit, as you did in this life, down together over food and laughter and the company you miss now. She will be the same person, she will love you no less than she did in this life.
It seems unfair, insensitive, downright horrible to tell you to not be sad. It’s natural to be sad, but whatever you do, don’t despair. Despair is an insult to God’s promise, to the fact that He very beautifully, very reassuringly stated, “My mercy overcomes My wrath.”
And remember that God said in the Qur’an,
“Fear ye not!” (they suggest), “Nor grieve! but receive the Glad Tidings of the Garden (of Bliss), the which ye were promised!”
“We are your protectors in this life and in the Hereafter: therein shall ye have all that your souls shall desire; therein shall ye have all that ye ask for!- A hospitable gift from one Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful!”
The Holy Qur’an: Surah Ha-Mim 41:30-32