Dear Kamran, dear Farhan, dear Imran,
The sad news of Shamim’s passing away touched us all. It is sorrowful to loose such a dear person among us. We have to bear the irrecoverable loss with patience. The nature has relieved her of the pains and the difficult last phase of the sickness.
You three with your family members have performed your job with love and patience during her sickness and accompanied her during the period. She must have been feeling good of the love and care given to her. She had a fulfilled life among her children and grandchildren. She must have closed her eyes with satisfaction and in peace.
On her part, she performed her life duties with patience, integrity, dignity, diligence and love for all, never complaining of the difficult times she had to suffer in her life time, never talking bad about somebody. We are all “actors playing a part” in this transitory world but she played her part wonderfully leaving a lesson for all of us.
I, myself, being so far away and not able to travel for the last about one and a half year, sit beside a framed picture of Shamim placed on a side table, with a candle lit by Sandra, feel helpless and full of grief, thinking about something like “play me a song of death” or wanting to listen to Sherezade by Rimski Korsakov, and wanting to bring something on paper, recalling memories and trying to stop the flow of uncontrollable tears.
No, the memories would not stop coming: In 1947 escaping house in Agra in a scarce-to-hire tonga (imagine the parents with five small children), broken tonga wheel on the way in the dark to the railway station, riding a train to Bombay with a train on the opposite platform with passengers with glittering knives, swords and lathis, transfer in an open truck from Bombay railway station to a refugee house full of hundreds of them, ship “cruise” for three days in the bottom deck or hull of a ship from Bombay to Karachi, bottom deck full of womitting passengers sick of sea travel, search of water by father on the ship, he lost his way from the ship kitchen to us, Sagheer goes searching for him and discovers him on a staircase leading down to bottom deck, mother taking care of five children at that place full of womitting passengers, in Karachi in a so-called “hotel” waiting one month for a train to Lahore and then to Bhera, life in Bhera with the young hopes of a Pakistan we dreamed about, trying to produce tooth-paste, shoe polish cream and soap ourselves according to the instructions given in the chemistry books, doing all the efforts long years to maintain the family and the goal of Pak-stan we tried to achieve under all hardships, Shamim passing the matriculation examination as first (or second !) position in the school, what a brilliant person, marriage at a young age not very uncommon during the then-prevailing conventions, unfortunate early death of Farooq, Shamim as a young widow, bringing-up three children an taking care of their good education with a future, transfer of Shamim from Sargodha to the first floor of a house at the traffic-rich Trunck Road of Lahore – all traffic in close sight baring any sleep, waiting with patience for a house to be constructed in L.C.C.H.S. and so on and so on.
Shamin endured all these initial difficulties with patience and then dedicated her life to the family. It – the product of Shamim – paid off, Shamim enjoyed the sight of three good children, married, living comfortably and doing their duties. She was happy to see the children and grandchildren, all of them and also other people respected her, which she earned due to her inherent qualities. She must have been satisfied and happy to complete her mission.
She was lucky to go first among other brothers and sisters and so not to bear that grief.
Is it just by chance that Isa (originator of a religion and considered a prophet – with sufferings – in Islam) and Shamim died on the same day – Good Friday?
She was what Germans name “a beautiful soul”. Unfortunately, our invitation to Shamim to come to Dubai to stay with us for some time did not materialise due to her and my sickness. Now, we are confronrted with beautiful memories from Toronto, place of our last meeting with Shamim, where we really shared the memories and kept the dear moments for the future. She will stay with us in our hearts till we have passed the final exam ourselves.
All our love is with you.
Sagheer and Sandra