I find it quite interesting how we wait until people leave this earth before we talk about the good they did in this life…or we wait until it’s a special day to tell them, or our friends on social media, how wonderful they are. Well, today it’s not Father’s Day, and it’s not my father’s birthday; it’s just a day where I feel compelled to share with you all the story of my father.
Since starting my blog in May 2014, you will notice that I have never spoken about my parents before, I do this out of respect for their privacy. However, I feel like my father’s childhood is one that I have to share with you all, for it’s a story that always leaves me emotional.
My father grew up with a young mother and an educated father; in fact, my paternal grandfather was the only person in the Pakistani village where my father’s family lived, that knew how to read and write in English. My paternal grandfather was a great business man, and therefore he was able to comfortably provide for his family; that all changed when he passed away unexpectedly, leaving behind his wife and his seven young children.
At this time, my father was about 7 years old; he had no choice but to work outside the house to help his family survive. One day, he went walking to the city that was hours away-barefoot-without any shoes or socks. He left in the morning to sell so e items, made pennies, and then walked back home just before sunset. Thirsty and exhausted, he asked his mother for some bread, for he had been working all day under the hot sun and his hunger was now unbearable. With sadness in her eyes, his mother told him that there was no bread left for him. Suddenly, he collapsed. He was revived with some goats milk, but sent to bed that night without any food. At 7 years old, having to lose his father, having to work, and having no food…this is what defines a person’s strength.
If I want my children to inherit anything from my father, their maternal grandpa, it is not his money- but his strength. It is important for me to tell my children that because of their maternal grandfather’s strength, they are here today- living in Canada with all the luxuries surrounding them. My father is human and has made many mistakes in his lifetime, as we all do; but when I look at him today, I see that little boy who has made it. May Allah reward my father and his family for every hardship they have endured, and may Allah reward any person who has struggled in this life with Jannah in the hereafter, Ameen!