The Second Time Around

My first-cousin recently received her baccalaureate grades (219, mashallah) and if anyone here knows anything about the Syrian baccalaureate, than you know what I’m talking about when I say she’s lucky to have escaped with her life! So we were celebrating at my grandmothers house, my mom’s mom this time, enjoying the food and the company – our family was there as well as her mothers side. We were out on the patio, enjoying a balmy, Damascus evening. There was food, drinks, jokes, some argilih (of which I NONE I’m proud to say), and plenty family reunion-ing in the air. The evening was winding down, at around 12:30ish, some of the people had left, the women were in the living room joking about the men (outside discussing cars, economics, politics – you name it), when we heard this crash. And it wasn’t your ordinary crash. It went on. And on. And on… followed by silence. I swear the seconds it took me to run outside, closely followed by the rest of the women, are jam-packed with worst possible case scenarios. Apparently my brother, the sixteen year old this time, had run into the glass sliding door my grandmother had separating one patio from the next. All I got to see before they rushed him off to the hospital was his arm gaping open. 

Alhamidallah it was a surface wound. 13 stitches in his arm, 3 in his ear. No copious outpouring of blood this time around, but the splatters leading up the stairs were just as bad. My God, I don’t know how some people can put up with this trauma day in day out! Those of us left behind at my grandmothers house while my two uncles and my parents rushed him to the hospital, sat there and dedicated a few minutes of silence to the poor souls suffering around the world. I mean, as I was wiping down the blood splatters that coppery smell hit me and my God, it’s the second time now that I’ve seen the blood of someone I love, and I still find it as shocking and, in some vulnerable way, vulgar. How? How do those poor, poor people deal with it?? God give us strength.

Every time I hear of an incident like this, or recently, see one, my mind automatically provides the alternative. The angel of death visits us seven times a day. Seven. Each time he asks God “Is it time for this person?” So on seven separate occasions you’ve just ‘brushed death.’ Amazing how vulnerable we are. How completely at God’s mercy. I usually try not to dwell on it too much, but the fact remains that it could be the next moment. Life isn’t guaranteed, and we may not all live to see our old age. 

Taking last week into consideration, I guess I could be questioning why. Exactly one week ago, at almost the same time, my younger brother had 2 stitches in his head. Today my other brother. And this is excluding the sometimes crazy and inexplicable things that happen around our house. Or maybe I should be asking who’s next? Lol. But I won’t. I know that particular road is a distraction, a little detour that leads nowhere and distracts from the right path. So I won’t. But I can realize. If this so happens to be a little “wake-up shake” from God, I can take it. We can wake up and realize, because pain is a warning sign of danger. The quicker you heed it, the less the damage. InshAllah. 

Anyways. It’s 3:50am. My first day at work is tomorrow… G’night folks!!


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