DEATH makes us more alive, and realise just how short it is. It also shock us into realising just how fragile our stay on this earth can be. Mamat, who died early Tuesday morning, make those who knew and loved him, died a little as well.
In an odd way, he was very much his father's son. Pakcik Jamal, Mamat's dad, died leaving a widow and two small children. Mamat, not even 40, died leaving a wife and small daughters. When Hamdan called to inform me of Mamat's passing, it shocked me to the bone. Almost paralysing.
Death often comes with regret. Terkilan, as they say in Malay. My terkilan is that I had not seen him for a long time, and he me. He was a cousin of mine, from my mother's side. But for much of our lives, we were brothers and friends.
When his father died, I felt a sense of responsibility over him and his brother. I like to think that I did play considerable part in Mamat's well-being. But as you know, there's always the feeling that one could always do more.
My terkilan is also that I couldn't be with him on his last journey on earth, having gone overseas for a short trip. Being one of the family elders, I would have been called upon to manage the funeral and all that goes with it.
Then again, maybe it was His way to spare me the pain that I would have surely felt had I been present, and to see his ailing mother struggle to cope with her loss. And Hamdan must have been just as devastated. It's in moments like this that I'm often found wanting.
Nonetheless, my prayers are with him. I'll always remember the times we went fishing, camping, the work we shared, the paths we took.
moga-moga roh kamu dicucuri rahmat
moga-moga dimasukkan ke dalam golongan orang-orang yang solih
doaku juga agar roh kamu meniti titian sirotulmustaqim dengan baik adanya
al-Fatihah untuk Mamat, saudara ku.