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I’m not Arabic, nor pious, but it’s not that hard to understand what the Arabic words “Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon” means, and it’s a phrase that Muslims say whenever news of a passing reaches their ears.

It’s a phrase that I’ve heard aplenty and murmured at the passing a a loved one, and it strikes you hard, for it reminds you that life is a privilege.

Life is a gift, an opportunity or a present that we’re fortunate to have, but sometimes it’s taken away from you and there’s really nothing you can do, but grief and recover.

Ellya, my poly classmate, whom I have fond memories of as a cheerful and energetic girl, happened to be the daughter of one of Singapore’s footballing icon in the early 70s, Dollah Kassim or affectionately known as the ‘Gelek King’.

HeĀ passed away this morning, after suffering a heart attack during an exhibition soccer game, while the wake was held at Sultan Mosque and the burial proceeded later on in the day, and though I couldn’t make it to offer my condolences in person, I wish her family and herself great care.

If there’s one thing I may wish to say to a grieving family, it is to grieve as you wish and to cry as you should, and while I will adviose to be strong and to keep moving on, go ahead and cry your hearts out.

Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon — To him we all belong; and to him we will return.