The sunrise in Manchester this morning was amazing.
It made me ponder on Eleanor Roosevelt’s wise words, “With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.”
This week, I have felt physically and emotionally exhausted.
Today, I have the strength to share with you some thoughts about the week that has affected me considerably.
You may have heard about a tragedy that took place in Bolton, the city of my birth, on the morning of Saturday, 8th July.
A devastating house fire took the lives of a mother and her three children.
The mother, Aneesa, was just 40.
Her children, Khadija, aged 5, Yusuf, who was 10, and Hammad (12 years old), all died in the fire.
Zubair, the husband and father who survived the ferocious blaze, "jumped from a first floor window as the fire ripped through the house, was injured as he frantically tried to smash windows and the front door with his bare hands to get back in and save his family."
Distraught Zubair was unable to enter the house until the firefighters arrived.
Any fire in which lives are lost is shocking and sad, but the family affected on this occasion is that of my own brother-in-law.
The loss of those four souls therefore feels personal.
This tragedy has hit me hard.
Its affected me not only because it was so close to home, but also because of the sudden way in which the lives of three young children and a mother has ended.
Several times in the day my thoughts go to Zubair who now has to live life without his family.
I can’t imagine his pain.
I can’t imagine how challenging it was for him at the funerals: four members of his family, four coffins, four burials.
I can’t imagine his pain.
Ever since I heard about the heartbreaking news, I have found myself intentionally hugging my children and husband tighter, and more often, and loving and appreciating them even more.
My thoughts for myself, for my family and for you, are to treat each day as a precious gift.
We get to live today, we get to breathe today, we get to love today and we get to make our impact today.
Celebrate this new day with a beautiful smile.
Celebrate this new day by choosing to live intentionally and to love incredibly those who matter in your life.
Celebrate this new day by forgiving yourself of the mistakes you made.
Approach today as a new opportunity to be the person you aspire to be.
Approach today with an excitement of grasping new opportunities.
Approach today with growth, generosity and gratitude.
I have committed to becoming even more mindful and intentional; what a precious privilege it is to be alive, to enjoy life, to serve and to love.
I have committed to treating each new dawn with the same reverence and joy as I do with each new year.
The departed were laid to rest on Tuesday, with over 4000 people from across the country paying their respects at a service in Bolton.
I pray that as Zubair rebuilds his life and that his pain is eased.
I pray that each new day brings Zubair new strength and new thoughts.
I pray that he is reunited with his family in heaven, in Jannah, according to the Muslim belief.
If you would like to send a message of condolence, comfort or strength to Zubair, the father and husband whose family died in the fire, please email support@HafizahIsmail.com and I personally will see that it is forwarded to him at an appropriate time alongside other messages of support.
Thank you in advance.
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