The Love Letter
Many of us have taken someone in our lives for granted. Sometimes that person has caused us anguish, yet we underestimate how much we love them and how much we would miss them if they were no longer with us. A widow shares with us a glimpse of her marital bliss:
“A few years ago, my husband passed away. It was sudden and so unexpected. I was not ready for him to be gone so quickly. I still am not ready to be alone. We were married for over fifty years. How do you live with someone for fifty years and then move on from that, on your own?
Less than twenty-four hours before his death, we had spent the day by the beach, shopping together, eating out together, enjoying the beautiful weather together. We were blessed in our lives, even though things did not turn out the way I had expected. We did not always get along. Sometimes he did not want me to do the things I loved. Sometimes I felt like he was a barrier between me and my dreams.
Sometimes I was angry at him. Sometimes I blamed him for what he stopped me from becoming.
But through the ups and downs, we were there for one another. It is comforting to know that there is someone who is always going to love you, to smile at you before you sleep, to tell you that he loves you after you are done arguing. To help you become a better person, even if it is a different person than the one you wanted to be.
My husband knew I am a cleaner. I like to take things out and dust them off and organize. Some time after he had passed, I was cleaning our home and thinking about him. I was reflecting on how I think he knew his time was coming. The month before he passed, he would watch the live prayers from Mecca for hours. He did not use to do that, but he suddenly craved it. He said it brought him peace. He said he wanted to visit Allah’s House, subhanahu wa ta`ala — exalted is He. Maybe Allah (swt) wanted him to visit Him instead. May Allah (swt) shower His mercy on him. As you read this, please take a moment to pray for him.
As I thought of him, of our memories, of our children, our grandchildren, the places we had visited, the sacrifices we had to make, the turmoil in our lives, the blessings we had together… I came across a paper, folded amongst the books I was organizing. I opened it and held my breath. It was in his handwriting.
You mean so much to me. I love you.
– Your husband”
I read it over and over, and I wept. He knew I would eventually see the note. Maybe he wrote it because he felt he would not be able to tell me in person sometime soon. Maybe Allah (swt) wanted to comfort me when He knew my longing was so intense.
I miss him so immensely. Yes, I did make sacrifices for him. And sometimes I was angry, depressed and resentful because of it. Sometimes I held on to my resentful feelings for years.
But if it took sacrificing everything I wanted in life just to spend one more day with him holding my hand, making me laugh, looking at me with love filling his eyes, humming in the shower, thanking me for dinner, hearing his voice speaking to our kids on the phone, or kissing me goodnight, I would do it. Just for one more day. He was worth it.”