When I Cried For My Dead Mother-in-Law, God Sent Me This Instead

On a recent clear sunny day, I was sitting on a bench in the playground crying my heart out.

The tears came down my cheeks fast and nothing my husband could do or say would make them stop. I was having one of those days again which, as a mother living far away from two of her children, felt hopeless. There were so many complex thoughts going through my head and I couldn’t make a single one of them hush down.

‘Children should never live apart from their mother’ I thought to myself, over and over again like a trapped hamster in a running wheel.

I felt depressed,

and guilty,

and angry.

Due to circumstances beyond my control, my boys weren’t living with me and there’s nothing that I could do (at least at that moment) to bring them home.

“The only woman who could have ever understood what I feel is Mama Sakina,” I angrily answered my husband when he asked if there’s anything he could do to ease the pain. Mama Sakina was my husband’s mother (now dead) and like me, she also had to endure an extended period of distance parenthood. My husband was raised by his father and stepmother.

“If she was still sitting here with me, I’d ask her so many questions. I’d ask her how she survived, how she kept hope alive, how she never let this experience turn her into a bitter person.She’d understand. She’s the only one who’d understand.” I leaned forward on the park bench and dug my face into my hands.  That moment felt like a very dark and lonely hole.

Just then, Sakina, my four year old daughter, and late mother-in-law’s namesake, came closer to stand beside me. She had heard me crying so she dropped her playing to come see what was wrong. She stroked my hair gently and softly released the grasp of my fingers from my face. With her little hands, she raised my chin and brought my eyes level to hers. Her eyes softened as she gazed into mine; they spoke of understanding and companionship. Then, with her tiny little fingers, she brushed my rolling tears away. Her presence filled the air with tranquility.

“I’m sorry, Mama” she said in her sweet, innocent voice, “everything will be fine.” And with as far as her hands could stretch, she hugged me tightly. As our cheeks touched, I could feel myself melting into her warm embrace; the urgent thudding of my heart calmed down and my breathing came back to normal. I felt light again.

I looked up and smiled. Sakina smiled back and just then, as if nothing momentous had happened, she skipped back to little her brother who was busy trying to climb up the ladders to go down the slide.

God had just answered my prayers in the most unexpected of ways.



9 thoughts on “When I Cried For My Dead Mother-in-Law, God Sent Me This Instead

  1. I have tears in my eyes reading this, firstly because I can’t imagine not being close in distance to my children and secondly because I would miss my mother in law terribly!


    1. Thank you for reading! I’ve cried so much for my children over the years but I know my tears aren’t in vain. I will be reunited with them one day, God willing.
      Please remember my mother in law in your prayers!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sub han Allah…I can relate. My mother and I haven’t the best relationship and this really hits home for me. However our relationship is much more toxic, hence why I haven’t been in contact with her.

    May Allah make things easy, amin.


  3. Masha’Allah, what a beautiful daughter you have. May Allah reunite you with your sons, and may your mother in law be granted with the best of rewards in the akhira, ameen.


  4. I got goose bumps reading this. May Allah s.w.t ease/give you Sakina to your worries and all of ours . For some reason, I felt like this was a “message/presence” from your the Almighty x


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