At times these three years have passed by excruciatingly slow and at other times they have gone by so fast. I still remember so clearly taking care of Abdullah as he battled against his insidious leukemia which took his life on 08 February 2010. He put up such a strong and brave fight against the aggressive disease.
With today being the three year anniversary of the day he moved on from this world into the heavenly world, I’m sharing my tribute to him with American Bedu readers in a simple letter postmarked to:
Abdullah Othman Al-Ajroush
09 June 1956 – 08 February 2010
My Dearest Desert Boy,
Although the years without your physical presence continue to pass by I continue to miss you and the great love we shared in our short time together. However, rather than grieve and be engulfed by sadness, I want to keep this letter upbeat as I reminiscence on some of my favorite memories about the short and precious life we had together.
Our courtship was so slow and cautious on my part even though you knew by our second meeting you wanted me as your wife. Your words scared me to death and actually slowed down the courtship on my part. Of course I had heard too many negative experiences between Western women and Saudi men. However, from day one you demonstrated you were such an honorable man and with only sincere intentions.
Among some of my special memories during our courtship was giving you your very first birthday celebration. I’ll never forget the pools of emotion in your eyes filled with tears of joy, love and surprise! It was the first of many celebrations until you were taken from me all too soon.
Pakistan was a magical place for us to get to know one another and form the foundation of our relationship. I loved traveling with you to Naran and Shogran where we went trout fishing together, had a picnic by the shore of a mountain lake, went horseback riding in the mountains and you demonstrated to me your skills and prowess in handling a 1953 Willie’s Jeep! We learned so much about each other and our shared values and goals in life then.
I was convinced when I was transferred out of Pakistan that our relationship would change. We’d either remain good friends or maybe you’d ultimately forget about me. I remember as I drove away from Pakistan realizing that I did love you but had been afraid to say those words to your face. However, I never forgot what you told me when I gave you my “canned” goodbye speech about how special you were to me and remaining friends. You said, “Desert Girl…a mere border is not going to keep me apart from you. Neither will any oceans or our individual nationalities. I love you, Desert Girl, and I intend for you to be the wife in my life.”
You always were a man of your word. You visited me multiple times in India. In addition we got to meet up a few times in Dubai. Each time our love and devotion to one another increased. When you asked for the phone numbers to call and introduce yourself to my family members so that you could tell them your intentions were honorable and serious and for them to ask any questions of you, my heart was overflowing with love and joy. I had no doubts that you were the right man for me.
It still astounds me that you were prepared to resign from your well-established career if you had to, in order to marry me. Thankfully it did not come to that and I remember our very joyous celebration when we received the official approval from King Abdullah for our marriage to be recognized and I had my legal place beside you as your wife in the Kingdom.
You treated me like a Princess in Saudi and were my champion in every way. You made sure I was comfortable and welcomed so warmly. When the first crisis, my cancer, touched our lives in June 2008 you took a month off from work to take care of me. You made me feel so cherished and helped me overcome so many fears I had about cancer.
Just when our lives were getting back on track, we received our second blow with the diagnosis of your own cancer. Yet, Love, you were so brave and stoic. You did not complain and conserved all your energy and channeled your fears into your battle.
It’s funny that as close as I know we were before cancer entered our lives, I felt we elevated to a new level of closeness with your battle. How many nights did we sit up together, me sharing your hospital bed, and revealing our hidden dreams and desires? I knew you well before but I learned even more during those times.
Since your passing, my life has changed in so many different ways. I’m the same person you knew yet in some ways I’m not. I know you’d be happy to know how widely and deeply my faith has encompassed me. I don’t take any day for granted.
I do believe you are looking down at me from heaven. I’m sure you know each time I’ve held conversations in my head with you. Also, I can easily imagine you in heaven with the faithful greyhound or saluki you always wanted sitting loyally beside you.
I miss you, Baby. I always will. You filled a void in my life and gave me a love that I know I’d never experienced. In every way, you will always be my Prince.
God Bless you, Abdullah. May you continue to know you are deeply loved and rest in Peace.
Your Desert Girl,
Carol (your American Bedu
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