The silver lining

We got locked out of the house today. And it was all my fault. As usual.
From childhood, things have been blamed on me. Even when I don’t do it! I thought it went away. Apparently not.
Anyway…
I had a very very strong urge to go “Why me??!”
I’m the one who crashes the car, I’m the one who loses the parking card, I’m the one who misplaces the house keys. I’m also the one who uses the collected gift money on charity thinking it was such a great deed. (Yes, I actually did do all those things. Those were not just fingers pointed at me..!) Sometimes I wonder why people think I’m “so responsible” when I’m so clearly not..!

Of course what happened today was nobody’s fault. Ok, maybe I should have actually checked my wallet to make sure I had my keys before just claiming that I did. But in my defence, they are ALWAYS THERE. So now I don’t know where they went =\
I also so very generously gave my dad the other key as he went somewhere else while we headed back home, thinking he needed it more than we did. Because I thought I had mine, you see.
What followed was a lot of irritation out in the heat, frantic calls to the father to find out what time he’d be back home, raised voices that can occur only in such situations, and some checking of whatsapp messages because the wifi reaches beyond the front doors of the house.

Then we went to the next building to pray in air conditioning and chill there for a bit while we waited for… I wasn’t sure what.
And I thought, “why is this happening? Ramadan is nearly upon us, is this a test of sabr?”
My two years of Qur’an study forced me to put things in perspective. I didn’t come up with any answers, for very rarely can we answer the “why?” to Allah’s plans, but I did calm down, make a lot of istighfar, and contemplated on my relationship with my family and how the whole thing had been handled. Ok maybe I sulked just a little bit too because I was tired of being yelled at.

What surprised me was the role reversal in the situation: my mother, who is normally the calm, patient one, tawakkul ‘ala Allah, qadr Allah, etc, was super irritated. Maybe because she had to sweat in the heat while we tried to get the door open.
My dad on the other hand, who doesn’t preach as much deen as my mother, and who had to leave his meeting early because of our predicament, just said “Well this teaches you to check your bag before you say anything! But it’s ok, Allah knows best.” And that just left me in tears.

It was comforting and scary at the same time, because it made me realise what matters the most is if you practice what you preach at the moment that it is needed. And practice is more important than preach, obviously.
It got me thinking that when I was in this whole trial, the first thing I said was not “Alhamdulillah”, and that means I am far far from where I should be.
That is my personal test to check my level of eman – how soon once a trial has struck, do I say “Alhamdulillah”?

The fact that I have not reached that goal means I have yet to strive for it, and a lot to work on. All the Qur’an in the world means nothing if it doesn’t come out in your actions, on your tongue and in your heart.

It also showed me that I have a LOT to be grateful for – 1) The fact that I know I have shortcomings is only by the tawfeeq of Allah, for it is truly a lost man that does not even know he is lost. And so, if you ever recognise your faults, thank Allah.
2) Even though we were locked out of our house, we still had somewhere to go – to offer our salah and calm down, spend the time indoors where it was cool, and not sweat out on the street. Thus does Allah take care of us, always showing us a way out, even when we can’t see it ourselves.
3) When you know things happen only by the permission of Allah, it helps you immensely through the situation. Of course I felt guilty about the whole circumstance because it was my fault, but there was no complaining because it was not in our hands. What’s done is done; what matters is how we deal with it now. And being calm makes it all seem alright =)

People wonder why difficult things happen. I say because that’s when we remember Allah more. And it forces us to see that every cloud DOES have a silver lining, if we look hard enough.

الحمد لله على كل حال ♡

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