How Death Transformed a Person


It was 4.a.m in the morning when I woke up, overhearing my cousin’s voice waking up her brother. She was crying, then handed the phone over to him. Mohammad Ali, Saliha Ishaque’s brother, immediately got up, took the phone and asked her what had happened. He left the room and began talking to someone on the phone. When he returned, he immediately asked her to go with him to the hospital.

It was then I realized something terrible had just happened.

On the way to the hospital, Ishaque kept crying and praying for everything to be fine. Her brother was in a complete haze. Once they reached the hospital, they began to search for more information about who the police had called about.They were directed to the morgue.Holding her brother’s hand, Ishaque started taking small steps.

When they approached the morgue, they could see lines of bodies, all wrapped in white sheets, with their feet and faces uncovered. The first thing her eyes rested upon were the feet she was familiar with. She started screaming, and placed her hands around her head, as she ran out of the ward, she fainted.

They were her mother’s feet.

Later, when she opened her eyes, she could see a number of people around her, all waiting for her to wake up. The first thing she uttered was, “Ammi,” meaning mother. She hugged her grandma and cried as loud as she could.

It was only two days ago when Ishaque was begging her mother not to go. However, Ishaque’s mother had to leave, to visit her sick brother. . She spent two nights there. On her way home, their car had an accident. The last time she talked to her parents was 3:45.a.m in the morning, 15 minutes before the accident took place, when she asked them what time they would be home. Her father, who was driving the car, was badly injured. He was under emergency care for the next four days.

After one mournful week of guests occupying the whole house, Ishaque finally had some time to spend alone. She took all the albums of her childhood out of her drawer, the albums long forgotten. One by one, she reviewed all her photos. Her eyes got stuck on one picture of her wearing a heavy white frock and wrapping her arms around her mother’s neck. Tears rolling down her cheeks, she placed the picture on her chest and slept on the floor.

She spent the rest of the month in her room. She did not talk to anyone. She did not take her meals properly and she refused to go out. Ali remained very cooperative, understanding, and patient towards her. He helped her out in every possible way. Sometimes, he would come to her room and talk to her. He made Ishaque realize that nobody was going to help her out except herself. She had to fight a war within. He told her that as long as she allowed herself to recall the past, she could not move on. He told her to get up, to get out, to keep herself busy, and to value those who are still there in her life.

She got up, she got out, and she started her classes again. Instead of sticking to her own sorrows and worries, she started listening to other’s worries and giving them relief. At times, she would forget her own sorrow while listening to other’s stories. This intrigued her towards choosing psychology as her major.

I have never encountered a person who shows so much concern to others. She finds happiness in spending time with others, especially those who are upset or worried. At times, I see her walking alone across the streets at night. I can see that she misses her mother; however, I can also see her face, so peaceful and full of contentment.