Good day, Comrades!
Tomorrow is the Islamic new year (Muharram). And like I always do every year, one day or the night before new year is “tafakkur time”. It means to do some reflection toward this world, including self-contemplating and introspection. Like a meditation.Actually, I do tafakkur every day, when ever I have time. But at some particular days/nights, like on Ramadhan, birthdays and new year, I take a little more time to do the tafakkur.
Why does a Muslim do tafakkur? Here’s why:
“Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those of understanding. Who remember Allah while standing or sitting or [lying] on their sides and give thought to the creation of the heavens and the earth, [saying], “Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” (QS.3 Ali Imran: 190-191)
In short, tafakkur is good for one’s soul. It made us think about Allah and His creations, made us more grateful to His blessings. Such thinking will make us more attached to Allah, and not to dunya (worldly affairs).
Before I begin, to be honest, this entry is a story that I should have told the man I loved. But alas, I haven’t had the chance to ever tell him. So….. yeah… And, I kinda wish, somehow, he made time to read it. Perhaps that way he’s finally able to understand me a little bit more, and be less cynical to me in the future. Bismillah..
So, here is my tafakkur, over the years that I’ve passed. This may not a pleasant story to read, and I must apologize, because it’s also gonna be a very long entry, so prepare yourself. ^_^
I was thinking about my marriage. Both my marriages.
Is any of my marriage founded on love? The first marriage (1996 – 2001), it is. We were young college kids who decided to get married rather than doing sin of having relationship. You know, inevitable acts in relationship, like going out together, holding hands, kissing, etc. My ex husband was a pious Muslim, so he thought it would be bad if we did such thing. One thing I realized a little too late is that he’s a boy who refused to be a man.
He couldn’t be the bridge between me and his parents. In Indonesia, when two people get married, so do their families of both sides. It is important to teach your spouse to love your parents like her/his own. When a man/woman could not do such, it will result badly in marriage. Okay, so I made bad judgment when saying “yes” on his proposal. But, yes, I admit, perhaps I gave up too easily on him. I was still young (23 at that time), foolish and impatient.
It’s just that my parents taught me, “You can cure anything, but attitude.” My ex’s attitude is childish and irresponsible. It’s always in his blood to do so. And even though I’m a wife, my job is NOT to change my husband. A wife’s job is to remind him to return to Allah’s path if he ever lost his way. The “change” (in attitude or point of view) is his own job/responsibility.
My second marriage, to be honest, was not quite based on love. At that time, we both already in our 30’s and no longer “hunting” for a mere relationship. We were aiming for marriage. So I noticed that he can accept my children like his own. It’s good enough for me. And when he asked my parents for permission, my mom and dad made sure if he could accept the kids. He said yes and promised to take them as his own, it’s a good answer for my parents, so they gave him the permission. When it was my turn to ask, why he proposed me. He answered me, “Niyattan lillahi ta’ala.”–he married me because of Allah. I couldn’t ask for a better answer.
But when the test from Allah came down upon us, I think he gave up. I didn’t. I’m sure you know that Allah will always test us. The Quran said so.
“Alif, Lam, Meem. Do the people think that they will be left to say, “We believe” and they will not be tried? But We have certainly tried those before them, and Allah will surely make evident those who are truthful, and He will surely make evident the liars.” (QS Al-‘Ankabut: 1-3)
“And We will surely test you until We make evident those who strive among you [for the cause of Allah ] and the patient, and We will test your affairs.” (QS Muhammad: 31)
Errr… sorry, didn’t mean to preach. Hahaha.. I just would like to share you my point of view.. ^_^
Okay, so what kind of test Allah gave us? First test was the loss of property. Before I even met my present husband, I owned a car. Not a fancy one, but still good. After we got married, we both lived in a rented apartment. On December 23, 2008, my husband was the last man using the car. He didn’t park it inside the garage because a neighbor pissed him off (oh yes, he is easily angry), so he refused to park it inside. The next morning, my car is gone. Stolen.
That’s when the test begins.
He felt terribly guilty about it. Plus, I suffered miscarriage because of the shock. (Oh yes, a woman can get miscarriage if she’s mentally shocked, it’s like a direct hit to the heart). The baby was on the early stage of pregnancy, about 4 weeks old. I was bled for two weeks before the fetus finally removed. *sorry for the gross story, but it’s all scientific-ish. 😛 *
I was angry at the thieves, and kind of blamed my husband, but I let it all go. I remember, anything we possessed in dunya (earth) are all belongs to Allah. So, Allah gave, then Allah takes. It’s His right. Just like He took back our baby. The baby belongs to Him, so I must not complain. It made me sad, of course. I felt horrible. But I must stop grieving, because my husband felt a lot worse than me. I didn’t want to add more of his guilty feeling, so one day I smiled and told him, “Let everything go. Allah knows what’s best for us.”
The second test, my husband lost his job, just 4 months prior to our youngest birth date. It stressed him out. (Oh, long before we got married, I’m already a working mother, and it continues until now, Alhamdulillah.) He started to find a way. He rejoined his cousin for work. This cousin of his, well…how can I say it nicely…not really the best person in the world. They once worked together in the past (2001 – 2004). The cousin made bad decision that led them into bankruptcy. They fought, separated, but then reconciliate years later. Family will always be family, right? But I did warn my husband to not got involved too deep with him (the cousin), regarding to the previous feud.
Apparently, my husband forgotten my warn. Like I said, family will always be family. No matter how many times a family betrayed you, you will always forgive them, and forget. I can’t explain it in detail, because I trusted my husband to decide his own moves… All I know that, the entire time my husband followed his cousin, he rarely earn money. So, I started to complain, asking his duty as the provider, as the part of his responsibility of being an imam. Clearly, he disregarded my complain. Meanwhile, I spent all my salary to pay for everything: the apartment rent, the monthly expenses, even his cigarettes (which I hate!) and on and on and on.. But you know what, I don’t mind it. It’s my duty to be the “co-pilot” of this little plane.
The only thing made me stressed up is that my husband changed. He started to skip dinner and didn’t come home until 2-3 days later. He started to lie (about when he’s coming home) and ignore my phone calls. He even made some debts to other people, and left me paid for it all. He started to become very rude, using harsh words and swearing a lot more, and often snapped because of a small mistake. His mouth is evil–that’s all I can say. Not only to me, but also to my children, including the youngest. The mother instinct in me took over, so the next thing I knew, my husband and I fight almost every day.
Sometimes the fight happened in front of our children. I tried to stay silent, but he’s that kind of man who keeps offended other people until they reacted. And I admit, when I went furious (which I don’t like to be), my words can also get very very sharp. I have this life principle to get back to people 3 times than they treated me. If somebody is nice to me, I will be 3 times nicer to them. If they act rude to me, and I can be ruder or just walk away and leave them rot in their hatred. ^_^
This also valid to my husband. Apparently, I’m not a woman who fears my husband. I only fear Allah. When my husband refused to act like a Muslim husband should be, it’s my duty to straighten him. That’s the reason we fight. But his idle mind (for being “jobless” for years) turned even more evil. He started to accuse me things I didn’t do. He accused me cheating and slept with other men, even questioning who was the real father of our youngest. (That’s just a wonderful accusation, isn’t it? ^_^) And, honestly, I was kind of: What the fuck!! *LOL*
He also started to showing off his anger at me and deliberately stated my flaws and mistakes in social media. ^_^ Haha.. Childish, right? It made me angry, of course. But I didn’t let my anger clouded my heart for too long. I was still able to find myself forgiving all his abussive (verbally) attitudes. And, to be perfectly honest, I can’t help but feeling traumatized because of this phase of my life.
And…. it just broke my heart to find out last June (yes, June 2013) that the entire time my husband followed his cousin, he consumed drugs, WITH his cousin and other cousins. So THAT’S the reason why he changed! That’s the reason why he doubted my faithfullness and started to accuse me bad things I didn’t do. It crushes me entirely. Now, that I knew the truth, I found it hard to forgive what he has done to me. The horror of our fights re-haunted me. Things that I already let go, suddenly returned. So, it’s the drug caused it! I feel betrayed. Completely.
You see, he did use such substances in high school (he told me so). And alcohol is nothing new for him. But, when he married me, he promised he had already left those haram stuffs behind, and promised to never touch it all anymore.
Oh, have I told you that he used to be a Christian? Well.. he was. He converted into Islam few years before we met. At first, he did look discipline and a devoted Muslim. He still pray 5 times a day though. But then he broke his promise! Like I said, I feel betrayed. It’s a worse betrayal than cheating–I think. Not only me, he also betrayed Allah. That hurts me the most.
Now I don’t know what to do. He said he regrets everything, but I can’t trust his words anymore. I think he will do it again if he had the chance. I don’t know. I hope not. But… really, it’s hard to trust him again.
What make things worse is my daughter’s rebellion. She was the only witness of the terrible fights we were having. She protested, but got scolded by my husband. One day she told me, she could bear the yell and furious words my husband threw at her, but she couldn’t stand that he did the same thing to me. She told me, “Mom, being patient and stupid are similar, but they are two different things. And, Mom, you are no patient.” Her confession made me cry. My oldest son, he didn’t speak much. He fully trusted me, that I’m strong enough to do anything I must do. He only said, what ever I decide, he’ll support me. The same statements also expressed by my parents. They made sure I won’t face it alone if I come to the decision to end this.
However, some things weighed me. My youngest. And my mother-in-law. You see, I love my in-laws like my own family, even though they’re not Muslim–it doesn’t matter, faith is a private rights for each individual.
My youngest idolized his father so much. They are very close (since my husband is often at home and took care of our youngest). And my mother-in-law, she knew precisely who her son is. She couldn’t talk to him reasonably, so she begged (yes. Not only asked, but begged) me to be patient toward her son–my husband. How can I betray an amanah? But in other hand… So many people asked me to wake up and get a grip on myself. They said that I’ve been stepped over and mistreated for too long. And personally, I almost can’t stand myself when I’m with him. But… again, how can I betray an amanah given by my mother-in-law?
For this, I leave everything in Allah’s hands.
That’s it, the story of my life. It’s the shortest and most gentle version than the original story. I even skipped some important facts, because I couldn’t tell you. Not now, maybe. You see, even with such luck, I’m still able to laugh. So, I don’t see why you can’t do the same with your young life. ^_^
My dear friend, I’m telling you this story NOT to get any sympathy from you. I don’t think I need any symphaty nor anything, but your pray. Because good pray is the source of my strength. So, don’t feel sorry for me, just pray for me. It’s more than enough. ^_^ Also, I’m telling you this to let you know that you are not the only one in the world who suffers broken heart, loneliness and fear. And yet, don’t lose hope. Allah never sleeps. Allah never waste one’s patience. And Allah never break His promise. So, cheer up.
Ow-kaaay.. I think this is the longest entry ever—good enought to be made as a novel! ^_^ You take care now, Comrades. And stay shine.
Barakallahu fikum. Salam..
5 Comments Add yours
You sure are a great woman, maybe I am not of such a good advice, but if I can recommend you anything, it’s: don’t change, keep being who you are, though, nice and brave 🙂
Oh, merci beaucoup, my dear Adel..
It means a lot when the words came from my own friends. ^_^
Inshallah, I will not change. But if I do, it would be as a better person than I am today.
Keep shining, Adel. Barakallahu fikum. ^_^
your article is useful for us, thank 🙂
I’m glad if it is. 🙂
My pleasure. ^_^ ❤