In this post I share with you a little about one of my mother’s sisters, Auntie Zain and why I believe that love is very important. Auntie Zain is my mother’s third sister. My mother’s two older sisters have passed away. The eldest one lived till she was 95 years old. The second passed away at the age of 86 after a short illness. My Auntie Zain is 92 years of age today. My mother will be 90 later this year and her younger sister is 88 years of age. These five sisters were remarkable women. They had many skills and one could describe them as compassionate, kind, responsible and elegant women.

The Favourite Daughter

Both my Auntie Zain and my Auntie Nur now live in another country from the country in which they were born. My Auntie Zain left home first and invited my Auntie Nur to join her later. It was love that changed Auntie Zain’s life many, many years ago and that took her away from her home. My Auntie Zain was my grandmother’s favourite daughter. In turn she loved my grandmother greatly and till today will shed tears just thinking and talking about her.

No Arranged Marriage

In 1946 my grandmother received a request for my aunt’s hand in marriage from someone who was not known to my aunt, someone who was vastly different from her. This man came from a very traditional background and had different values and aspirations from my aunt. My aunt was not keen to be wed to this man. She was most unhappy about this as she believed in marrying for love.

So she sought the help of family friends, the D’Souza family and urged them to speak to my grandmother. My grandmother was very fond of and had high regard for Mr and Mrs M. D’Souza and my aunt knew this. She begged Mr D’Souza to speak to my grandmother and to advise her not to force my aunt to marry this man. Mr D’Souza did so and my grandmother eventually agreed not to marry Aunty Zain off to this man.

Love At First Sight

Shortly after this, a group of armed officers with the Liberation Forces visited my grandmother’s home. In this group was one Captain Masud, a handsome man, who was six foot tall. He had kind, gentle manners. He spoke quietly and he was an intellectual with excellent writing skills. At this visit when my Uncle, that is, my aunt’s brother, introduced his sisters to the group, Captain Masud looked at my aunt and it was love, as they say, at first sight for both of them.

Captain Masud persevered with his desire to know and keep my aunt with him for always. He finally persuaded my grandmother to let him marry my aunt and my grandmother agreed. And so it was that my aunt left her homeland in 1947 and went off to live in another country. It was love that took her away from her family and it was love that made her decide to strike out on her own and settle in another country, which was so different from her homeland.

A Lovely Personality

My Uncle Masud adored my aunt and treated her with much love. He was a very loving person and they had a very loving relationship. Uncle Masud was kind and mild. He had a great sense of humour and he had a love for words and literature. He had a beautiful smile.

Loving Family

Both my aunt and uncle were always there for their sons. They worked hard to give their sons a good life, one filled with love. My uncle was in the army and my aunt taught at a school. This provided a sound foundation for their home and their love and devotion towards each other and to their sons reaped much love in return. My cousins are, in turn, loving and kind to their mother, who lives alone now that my Uncle has passed away. They were a close knit family and when they were younger would go on holidays together.

My cousins have both achieved much in life. They studied at Oxford University and one was a Rhodes Scholar too. Today, one cousin lives in Europe and the other in Asia. Despite living many miles away from their mother, they speak with her on the phone every day. Love brings and keeps them together.

Still Active

At 92, my Aunt manages her household herself. She has people to help her but she is in charge of her home. Her memory is as sharp as ever. She still loves to cook and can whip up a great meal for others. Organised and meticulous that she is, my Aunt knows exactly where she has stored everything. She has a great sense of charity and will help others in need. She is kind and good to the less fortunate. My aunt has many friends who come by often to visit her. They have much to share with each other.

Caring For Someone

When my uncle was very ill many years ago, my aunt looked after him tirelessly. She cared for him until he passed away. This act of caring is a powerful act of love. This is something I know that many of us do, be it to look after a spouse, a parent, a child, a sibling or a friend when they are ill. It binds people together. Love is very important in our lives and being loving to everyone makes our lives richer, more interesting and more vital. When you love more, you attract more loving people and situations into your life.

Give Love

I communicate with my Auntie Zain on the phone very often. At the end of every conversation she will always say to me, “Give my love to your mother (her sister), to His Highness (the spouse) and lots and lots of love to you.” The love this brings makes me feel truly happy. Many people I know are uncomfortable with using the word “love”. Some hardly say it; others do so with some unease. Openly expressing your love for one another is one good way to let others know that they are loved. When we give our love to others we also receive love in return.

Try reaching out to others. We can all start by loving everyone with whom we come into contact, with our friends, our colleagues at work, our acquaintances, our neighbours and even with total strangers. If we are all a little more loving to each other, the world would be a much happier place.

1 thought on “MY AUNTIE ZAIN AND LOVE”

  1. Yes, it is so important to have love in ones life…I remember when I was growing up, a friend said to me, “remember, in whatever you do, don’t forget to have love in you”…at that time in my life, I had already given up love…and now, I am trying to put it back in my life…have any suggestions, Zaibun?

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