A Muslim mother sent me a message. This sister lost her child of only five months, a beautiful, healthy baby girl who she loved dearly; her beloved baby died suddenly in her sleep. She asked me why there aren’t many support groups for the grieving mother who’s lost a child due to SIDS, miscarriage or whatever else. My only answer was it’s one of those things people just don’t think about until they go through it themselves.
In life, we all have different struggles and challenges. Losing a child is one of the greatest trials in life. Only those who lose their children know the pain, so it would be hard for someone like me who hasn’t gone through this hardship to discuss or express what parents, particularly mothers who lose their children feel. The pain and heartache is just hard for me to imagine.
Nevertheless, it made me sad that a grieving mother who lost her only child while she was so young and full of life couldn’t find many comforting words or advice from authentic Muslim sources. It made me sad that she couldn’t find support groups to let her know that her heart will heal, InshaaAllah. The pain she described was “a pain she never imagined and a loss so profound.” She wrote to me, “I felt I had died.” I cried reading her description of such an immense pain after her baby girl died due to SIDS.
So I wanted to contribute in some way to bring reassurance to the aching hearts of mothers and remind them of the hadiths that showed our Prophet also lost not one, not two but three of his children, all in infancy. Not only that, he was mocked and called “the cut-off one.” Meaning he (Prophet Muhammad) was cut-off of having descendents since all of his boys who would carry on his name died. But Allah Almighty comforted our dear Prophet through the Quran in sura Al-Kawthar:
Verily, We have granted you Al-Kawthar. Therefore turn in prayer to your Lord and sacrifice. For he who hates you, he will be cut off.
Just as Allah comforted the heart of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, Allah comforts all of us through the Quran and through the hadiths of His messenger. Allah tells us that although there will be challenges and tests we must face, if we bare our tests with beautiful patience our rewards will be great. In life, there are great challenges but the rewards for being patient are greater and better.
Allah subhaanu wata’alaa says in the Quran,
“And be patient; verily, Allah wastes not the reward of the doers of good (Quran 11:115).”
In various other verses, Allah reminds us of the challenges and tests some of us will face in this life, however, in those same verses, Allah reminds us of the rewards for those of us who are patient and content with Allah’s decree. Allah says,
“You shall certainly be tried and tested in your wealth and properties and in yourselves, and you shall certainly hear much that will grieve you from those who received the Scripture before you (Jews and Christians) and from those who ascribe partners to Allah; but if you persevere patiently, and have Taqwa, then verily, that will be a determining factor in all affairs (Quran 3:186).”
So do you see my dearest brothers and sisters in Islam who have lost your precious children? Your loss is not a loss at all but a win when you ponder over the verses of the Quran. Allah will never waste your patience. In fact, Allah will double your rewards for being patient—these shall be granted their reward twice, because they are steadfast…” (Quran 28:54). Allah knows your heartache and He sees your pain, but Allah tests us all. When your daughter or son died and you said, inaa lil laa hi wa inaa ileyhi raaji’un, Allah has written down for you that you are one of His slaves who are patient. Do you know who you are among? You are among the true believers who were patient in their most troubling times. And for your patience, Allah will build for you a house in paradise.
It was narrated that Abu Sinaan said: I buried my son Sinaan and Abu Talhah al-Khoolaani was sitting at the graveside. When I wanted to go out he took my hand and said, “Shall I not give you some glad tidings, O Abu Sinaan?” I said, “Yes.” He said, “Al-Dahhaak ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn ‘Arzab narrated to me from Abu Moosa al-Ash’ari that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When a person’s child dies, Allaah says to His angels, ‘You have taken the child of My slave.’ They say, ‘Yes.’ He says, ‘You have taken the apple of his eye.’ They say, ‘Yes.’ He says, ‘What did My slave say?’ They say, ‘He praised you and said “Innaa lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raaji’oon (Verily to Allaah we belong and unto Him is our return).’ Allaah says, ‘Build for My slave a house in Paradise and call it the house of praise.’” (Tirmidhi)
This hadith highlights the reward parents will get for accepting the decree of Allah in losing their child. There are so many examples for us when it comes to dealing with tragedies specifically losing loved ones. One of those examples is the story of Prophet Ya’qub after his son, Prophet Yusuf, was taken away by his brothers. It was devastating to him. It is said that he lost his eyesight from crying because he loved and missed his son.
After his older sons told him the false story of Yusuf being eaten by a wolf, Prophet Ya’qub’s only reply was “(Nay, but your own selves have made up a tale. So (for me) patience is most fitting.) Ya
qub said,I will firmly observe patience for this plot on which you agreed, until Allah relieves the distress with His aid and compassion, And it is Allah (alone) Whose help can be sought against that which you describe. (Quran: 12:18). For his beautiful patience, Allah not only brought back the son of Prophet Ya’qub, but also united his sons and removed all enmity between them.
In conclusion, to all parents who are going through a hard time because of losing their precious children, seek help and healing in the remembrance of Allah. Be strong through patience. Convince yourself that if you are patient and accepting of Allah’s will, you will one day be reunited with your loved one in a better place and in a better condition. May Allah ease your pain and comfort your hearts with His promises. Allahuma Amin.
Articles on dealing with calamities and loss:
http://childrenofjannah.com/our-work/education/where-is-my-child/ (This is an excellent article which many parents will, inshaaAllah find helpful).