My husband's colleague and head of department ,yesterday lost his wife to cancer. L, the wife, was only in her early 40s, lovely bubbly and kind as an Irishwoman can be, and was a dedicated mother to a daughter of 11 and a son of 9. The most ironic thing is of all types of cancer that she could possibly get, its the type of cancer that her husband specialises in, goes to conferences and seminars for, operates on , cures, counsel patients and families on, etc. My husband too! My husband has been working with him for the last 7 years and the relationship is more than just mere colleagues. Hence my husband was the only one who knew of L's illness. And at the end, he was her primary carer. I only wish he would have let me help too. I liked L. But talking to L and/or her husband , you'd think the sun is shining and there is rainbow in the sky. No one knew. No one was invited to visit and to the end of her days, even though she was admitted to hospital a few metres away from my office, I did not, I could not, pay her a visit. I was advised that she probably did not want ppl to see her in that condition. I called her though and she politely brushed off all attempts at offering sympathy and support and we talked about how difficult it is to get our kids to do their homework. She first was diagnosed about 4 years ago,was well for a long time, until it came back with a vengeance this year. She became weaker and weaker, cancer went to her lungs, they removed part of her lungs, then it came back again and its not salvageable - but they hung on and she fought. like mad. I tak pergi tengok pun I tau. She stuck to her routine until she physically could not do it anymore. She finally finally surrendered and went to hospital 2 weeks ago. She was a devout Muslim - from a staunch Catholic background- malu je kan to the kulit melayu melayu yang semayang pun tak, kan??
The husband is a strong, stout, big man, who , as dedicated (read crazy) doctors often will do, come into the office during weekends etc.No clingy wife for him. A lot of his strength I suspect, come from her. They were together for donkey's years in the UK and its not easy to come back to Malaysia without family and without friends. She is a no nonsense lets get on with it kind of person. Was. Was was was was.
Takziah to you, Prof Y, and your family, may Allah give you strength to accept this loss, and may Allah swt blesses her soul and place her in Jannah...