Celebrating Eid-ul Adha 2019: In Yusuf’s Pit
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Category : EID SPECIAL
After completing my 10th standard, I was sent to the city for further studies. So, I had to leave my home at a very young age. I have spent as much as a month or more without seeing my parents; I just used to talk to them on phone once a week. I missed them in the initial days but gradually I got adjusted. What I am trying to say is that it was really not a new thing for me to be without them. But yes, I have never celebrated any Eid without my parents. That Eid ul Adha – if it was an Eid to me, happened to be one. My parents along with my elder brother were on pilgrimage to Makkah. It was the year 2019 – the year in which Article 370 of the Indian Constitution was abrogated due to which all communication lines were snapped in Kashmir. Everything, even the local transport service, was shut down. We did not have any news about them, absolutely nothing. Relatives and friends could not visit or call us either. It was difficult to bear but to celebrate Eid in such a situation was more difficult. Two days before Eid, I sensed the restlessness in me which seemed unending; somehow I managed to spend those two days in housecleaning and all such stuff. I tried to keep myself busy to get rid of this restlessness but when it came, Eid, as they called it, my restlessness turned into sadness and melancholy. In the morning, I didn’t want to get up from of my bed because I felt a mountain-like weight on my chest and eyes. But then I got the smell of Eid, not of its celebrations but the tasks or formalities that are supposed to be done on the day and I was in charge now… So, unwillingly I got up, I breathed a deep sigh and suddenly my mind whispered to me “Let’s be Mama today.” I smiled faintly at its silly whisper, “Come on, can anyone take her place?” but then I heard it replying “What is bad in acting like her, partially if not fully?” And after a bit of reluctance, I agreed.

After Morning Prayer time, I went directly to the kitchen. In our place, we begin our Eid al Adha with the freshly fried liver of the slaughtered animal. So, I was there in the kitchen all alone thinking how Eids used to be in our home, with Mama, Papa and my brother. It was so painful. I tried not to weep, but I failed.

My mind and eyes were racing and it was the eyes that won -shedding two drops of tears as a sign of painful victory. I then forced my eyes not to shed now any more drops and let the tears get absorbed in my little droopy eyes.

‘I am a brave girl, and then the elder one, elder than my sister, I have to be jolly”…I made these auto-statements and went upstairs; put on my new bell-sleeved maroon and black colour gown- and wore a black scarf and let a silken, long, maroon dupatta hang from my left shoulder and tightened its other side at my shoulder and on the head forming a maroon arch over the black scarf. I wore one more thing, a fake one: a smile. I caught a full-length image in the mirror, hmm, I was not looking bad. After Eid prayers, we sacrificed the animal. I hastened to take a piece of flesh from its liver; fried it and then had a full-fledged breakfast. I went, later, to visit my grandma at my uncle’s house. We talked very little because we didn’t want to break down and weep on the day of Eid. She and I were hiding the same thing- something untold but understood. I came back we prepared Haziri/Duruni (a dish made by frying the liver, lungs and heart of an animal which we in Kashmir share with our neighbours along with the raw meat of the animal) and I went to distribute it. It is the custom of our society that I love most. I met my neighbours, talked to them and felt a bit of relief. Most of them asked me, are my parents fine? Did you call them? Despite knowing we could not. I came back talking to myself… Would the government restore the communication service for two hours considering the Eid? No… would they restore it just for one hour? No, no just for ten minutes. But no it was not going to happen, it was but a vain wishing. I pretended to be normal, doing all things that mama used to do, till evening. It was then, that my younger and only sister asked me why I miss them this much, why I am hiding so much pain inside me. I got shattered I went upstairs closed the door of my room and cried … remembering Kahlil Gibran’s saying “And ever has it been known that love knows not its depth until the hour of separation.” I grabbed the Quran, followed my instinct and opened Surah Yusuf …feeling Yusuf’s (May Allah be pleased with him) pain when he was so young, separated and distant from his parents. I felt myself in Yusuf’s pit. For the whole forty days, I recited almost only one Surah on a daily basis and it was Surah Yusuf, so deep, so painful. I wished for the happiness of the union of Yusuf (AS), not only with his family but with Allah – The real Wali of believers in this world and in the hereafter too. I became so close to Surah Yusuf, it linked me to my emotions and then surrendered all of them to my Allah as did Yusuf and Yaqoob (May Allah be pleased with them). With every passing day, I felt healed, I felt the Hikmah behind Allah’s plan in case of Yusuf or anyone facing such situations, I became responsible and strong, I learned to love, to care and at the top of that, I learned to thank Allah for His uncountable blessings among which Islam, Quran, parents and family at large are the most precious. Says Maulana Rumi “If you only say one prayer in a day make it THANK YOU.” Thank you Allah for everything.

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