”Lajya mye’an wean’s” (May my life be yours) a dua which is on the lips of every Kashmiri mother.
My mother like any other mother, just said the same dua on a phone call. Basit’s mother flashed in my mind. I could see her still eyes when she saw her son laid on a bed that she didn’t prepare. Her still face mustering all her courage, trying to not give away any emotion. She was fixing his shroud with her hands.
For 23 years, she held him next to her bosom. Cried when he got hurt, stayed awake for nights when Basit was ill. Made sure he ate his meals (Kashmiri mothers make sure of this), and watched him as he left to his school on the first day. For the next decade waited for him to come back from school.
She must have said this dua for him too. I am sure. But tonight when she spreads the Dasrarkhwaan, she will have an empty extra plate, the one Basit always would eat from. Would she step into his room, and smell his clothes.
There’s no greater pain for a mother to lose her child. You see, In Kashmir, sons and daughters are raised like grooms and brides. Like any mother, she would have had a dream of him being successful and marrying him off. The benchmark of ultimate happiness…
Everything has been snatched from her. Her son, her dreams for him, his own dreams. A life.
Imagine the pain of the mothers, of their slaughtered children. How harrowing must it be to bid adieu to what they loved more than their own lives.
May Allah protect our children and our parents…there’s just pain and agony in every corner of my country, may no mother witness this, may no father have to carry his son’s lifeless body to the graveyard…