Simin’s presentation to friends and supporters at the book launch held at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London on September 26th 2018
Good evening ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you very much for joining us.
I would like to say a few words about how this book came to be, and why it felt so important to write it.
“How can a mother ever imagine finding herself in such a position? How can I??”
This was the question I asked myself when, one year following my son’s death I stood before a gathering such as this at the launch of the Zhubin Foundation – a charity created by my loving brother Ali and Zyg my husband. The pain of loss remained raw, I was lost and confused.
Tonight, fifteen years later, when I ask myself the same question the feeling of joy in my heart and the desire to keep going are my answer: not only is it possible to endure, but also to grow. My journey since my son passed away has overflowed with many unexpected challenges, but I see now that it has been most fruitful. I love my journey.
This evening is a highlight in my life, but it’s one that would not have been possible without the help of both the Universe and my son’s spirit. It would not have been possible without my husband’s devotion, always ready to help whenever I called upon him.
This would also not have come to pass without Jill Martis – my angel friend and neighbour of 20 years, who has been with me on this road from the very beginning. Indeed, she is here this evening with her husband Xeno, all the way from Montreal to share with me this latest step in my magical dream. I have come to believe that, because of what awaited me down the road, 20 years ago the hand of the Universe put me next to Jill.
Never alone on my path, I have been rewarded with many caring and supportive friends. It was my brother Ali who took me to Miss Jane Lawson of the V&A. Jane then took me to Phil Allison along with his talented team at CultureShock publishing.
This book is not one about loss, grief, sadness or pain, although when my only child, Zhubin, ended his life at the age of 21, I was forced to face all of these beyond imagining.
Instead, this book is a tale of faith, hope, and finding inner peace.
A belief that all is well.
It is about becoming whole again.
My son Zhubin suffered from a very rare, complicated and extreme sleep disorder, which led to other severe health problems. Every single day I would ask myself how could he endure his pain, and I still look back and wonder how he coped. Even though he loved life and had strong faith, courage and hope, his final decision to end his suffering was not a spur of the moment one. He had thought about it carefully and, in his own special way, tried to prepare me as best as he could.
I never thought that I could survive such a loss, but Zhubin’s gentleness and love towards all, his way of thinking about life, and his words to me have been my guiding light – an inspiration and a reason for me to live, the reason for the Foundation to exist and now, for this book to be completed.
You are going to have a life without me. Live your destiny the way I lived mine.
Trauma, loss, misunderstanding, grief, loneliness are all part of life.
Accept it all – do not ask why.
Promise to do what I want to do but can’t.
Open doors for others.
Make the flowers bloom wherever you go.
Plant the seed of life with love.
Let your life be an example.
Pain can build us or break us.
Do not be broken.
Have courage. Have a purpose. Dedicate your life in a very intelligent way.
Look ahead and move on.
That should be your purpose in life.
A life without purpose is empty.
Don’t be sad that a life is over. Be happy that you had the privilege to deal with it.
Be my voice and spread my words.
Trust me. Trust your heart. Be free Mom.”
It is my sincere wish that this book and Zhubin’s words will bring hope and inspire grieving parents and others who are in pain.
I do not know who will read this book, or how many hearts it may touch. But if this book helps just one parent, then my life’s work is done and I will have a sense of achievement in my life.
I came to believe, as Zhubin wrote, that
“Don’t ever discount relationships. They are so inter-twined. There is a bonding, like roots to soil. Everything has a thousand connections. and connections are what make you. We are all connected in so many ways. We truly never leave each other.”
Zhubin taught me to see everything through the eyes of love. Above all, he taught me to have faith in the Unknown.
So tonight Zhubin my love, truly I can tell you l kept my promise, and will carry on the good work of the Foundation, knowing with all my heart and soul that you will keep your promise and will come to me when my time comes.
Your name has never left my lips
Your words have never left my mind.
Your love has never left my heart.
You are my heartbeat.
Thank you everyone for sharing my dream. I love you all. God bless you all.