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Hilal Her

Everlasting Memories

May 2024

Fate is a predetermined and divine scheme that significantly influences the course of events in an individual’s life. Occasionally, life presents us with daunting obstacles that may appear insurmountable. However, it is our unwavering belief in the will of Allah that sustains us, even in the face of losing someone we relied on for support and protection. An example of such a relationship is the marital bond between a husband and his wife. But what occurs when one’s partner passes away and the other is forced to cope with the aftermath and reconstruct their life without the reassurance that comes from having a companion? They face not only the challenges of day-to-day life but also a void in their lives that has the potential to eat at them, and those who rise above it all are truly remarkable. 

An examination of Mrs Zainab’s life following the death of her brave husband, Maj Muhammad Awais, provides a clear understanding of such a situation. On November 26, 2020, Maj Muhammad Awais suffered from a cardiac arrest, leaving behind his beloved wife, Zainab. Mrs Zainab recounts: “Awais was stationed in Kohat and was doing a normal PT test. While doing the mile exercise, he suffered a cardiac arrest.
At the time when Awais left us, my entire family and I were at a family wedding in Mansehra. Despite the festive ambiance that day, I couldn’t shake a sense of unease as if something unfortunate was going to happen. It was in the midst of all this that my uncle received a phone call after which he informed me that Awais was not feeling well. We departed swiftly for Kohat; the journey felt unending, primarily owing to worry and distress. However, I was determined to believe that Awais would recover, he would wake up when I called his name.
Upon arriving in Kohat and receiving the news of my husband’s demise, I was utterly speechless and unable to comprehend the gravity of the situation. Before his PT test, we had a light-hearted, casual conversation. However, just a few hours later, when I received the news that Awais was no more, it was very difficult to come to terms with it.
Initially, I struggled to accept my husband’s departure, and I experienced a profound sense of disorientation and instability. I only eventually accepted the painful reality when I saw Awais’s body, and it was Allah who provided me with the strength to keep functioning.”
Mrs Zainab Perwaiz asserts that the events that transpired were predetermined by Allah Almighty. Embracing this conviction, she has attained inner tranquility and persevered on the path of existence. The following are selected passages from a dialogue with Mrs. Zainab Perwaiz. This dialogue with the exceptionally resilient and brave Mrs. Zainab not only reinforces one’s belief in the divine will of Allah but also imparts the lesson of relying solely on Allah Almighty for help and guidance.
“Awais always exhibited a remarkable level of humility. He possessed an exceptionally kind and generous nature. He had exceptional communication skills and consistently displayed a wide, infectious smile. He was also highly meticulous in performing his prayers and reciting the Quran daily. He also maintained a diary where he recorded the monthly donations made by him for charity.
He exhibited remarkable kindness in all of his interpersonal connections. He exemplified exceptional filial devotion as a son to his parents, displaying great care and concern for his siblings as well as mine. He was an exceedingly devoted spouse and he consistently exerted himself to ensure the happiness of his relatives. He happened to be the son of my uncle from my father’s side. We have shared countless memories since we were kids. Before marriage, we used to have our fair share of disagreements and playful banter. After getting married in 2018, we had a remarkably harmonious relationship. He always approached any issues that arose in our marital life with a calm and cooperative attitude.
Amidst the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, my husband and I found ourselves stationed in China together in 2019. After a year we returned to Pakistan in August 2020. It was an incredibly meaningful period in my life, as we were together all the time and cherished every moment. I also found it difficult to accept my husband’s shahadat from cardiac arrest especially because all of his medical tests were conducted after his return from China and showed no abnormalities.
My husband attained martyrdom at the age of 32. Upon receiving the news, I immediately resolved to exhibit fortitude for myself and my parents. Despite our financial stability, Alhamdulillah, I commenced my employment at ISPR. Externally, this change may appear seamless and effortless, but I can assure you that it was not. I may appear resilient, but internally, I experience daily anguish due to the absence of my cherished spouse.
I have been fortunate to receive great benevolence from Allah. Through my experiences in these solitary years, I have come to realize that there is no greater fulfillment than finding solace in surrendering to the divine guidance of Allah. There are sometimes when I experience profound feelings of being overwhelmed. However, despite these challenges, I persevere, as I have no alternative except to exhibit resilience akin to that of my Awais. 
Adapting to the external environment has proven to be exceedingly challenging. I consistently endeavor to acknowledge and appreciate the positive aspects of my life, while also considering the hardships faced by others. Amidst every adversity, I have sought solace in Allah, firmly convinced that everything will be well. For each incremental progress I have made in my devotion to Allah, He has reciprocated with tenfold blessing, thereby fortifying my spiritual growth. After Awais’s shahadat, I came to the realization that shedding tears in the presence of Allah is an unparalleled experience, as His divine presence provides the utmost solace and assistance. I am profoundly appreciative to Allah for all the blessings bestowed upon me and for being my sole and paramount source of support during my moments of hardship. 
The army is a highly esteemed and exceptionally compassionate institution. Despite occasional resource scarcity, army consistently displays generosity by providing respect and support to the families of martyr’s. The assistance provided by Awais’s unit has been highly beneficial to us. Thus far, the Pakistan Army has shown us unwavering support and care, even in the face of the tragic loss of one of its own. 
Adversities are an inherent aspect of existence and serve as trials to evaluate our resilience. We must remain resilient and seek solace alone in raza-e-ilahi. Do not allow any adversity to render you deserving of pity. Instead, utilize it to fortify your Imaan. Existence can occasionally become exceedingly burdensome, and the loss of a cherished individual can permanently alter one’s existence. However, it is important to recognize that this existence is transitory, thus, strive to make it meaningful and dedicate your efforts towards your ultimate spiritual destination, known as Akhirah.”
According to Mrs Zainab Perwaiz, the key is for the pair to provide each other with a safe and comforting place, and to remain committed during difficult times by demonstrating understanding, patience, and making deliberate efforts.

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