Sometimes, horrific incidents can occur that many people will never recover from. But, many claim that their faith has helped them move mountains. A mom and dad made this happen, achieving the unthinkable.
Dressed in a pink pajama onesie and messy hair, a vibrant 8-year-old Sienna readied herself to sing. With confidence, she said:
"Hi, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Sienna Abdallah, and I'm going to be singing a song that I made up."
She then sang about how much she loved her mom and dad. She also turned to her faith, singing that she loved God and Jesus.
[Left] A funeral; [Right] Siblings Sienna, Angelina and Antony Abdallah with their cousin Veronique Sakr. | Source: instagram.com/i_4giveday youtube.com/SBS Australia
A PARENT'S NIGHTMARE
Heartbreakingly, that sweet voice would soon fade away because of a driver's irresponsible actions. In 2020, in Oatlands, Australia, this tragedy happened; she, her five siblings, and one cousin went for a walk to get some ice cream.
So, she and her husband, Danny Abdallah, and their surviving kids faced the devastating ritual.
Although their mother, Leila Abdallah, was hesitant, she let them go for the walk. Three of her kids were killed in a car crash on that day by a drug-affected driver, Samuel Davidson, in February 2020.
Leila and Danny Abdalla. | Source: youtube.com/SBS Australia
Sadly, siblings Sienna, Angelina, and Antony Abdallah passed on, along with their 11-year-old cousin, Veronique Sakr.
Sienna Abdallah. | Source: youtube.com/SBS Australia
DENIAL OR CONVICTION?
The surviving children were Liana, Alex, and Michael Abdallah. Talking about arriving at the scene, the mother remembered:
"And in my mind, I was thinking positive, that they will just stand up and everything will get back to the way it was. I wasn't thinking, this is it. My children died before me. I didn't lose hope."
Sadly, no amount of hope could bring her babies back. So, she and her husband, Danny Abdallah, and their surviving kids faced the devastating ritual -- burying their beloved children and niece in the ground.
A DARK PLACE OF POSSIBLE NO RETURN
Of course, the parents faced untold grief. It became so challenging for Danny that he began to think about taking his own life. In his own words:
"If I kill myself, this won't bring back my children. Whatever I do, they won't come back."
Leila spoke about a big reason she and her husband had to keep pushing onward. These, of course, are their kids, who they needed to remain strong for.
WHAT ABOUT THE DRIVER?
As deeply religious people, Danny and Leila's faith and prayers helped them through this dark period. It even helped them forgive the drunk driver. Leila said:
"I still forgive. I wasn't upset with the driver. I felt that God wanted my children at the time and in this way. And honestly, I pray for the driver, and I pray for everyone involved in this accident."
She continued to say that this is what her religious outlook requires of her if she is to be truly faithful -- to spend time in prayer and to forgive.
Their faith spread around their community, where not only did neighbors bring food over to pay their respects, but, they also joined in prayer.
These prayers were from all walks of life, from Christians, Muslims, the Jewish faith, and more. As the grieving father expressed, "It dropped all the walls and showed that we are all human."
THE POWER OF A NAME
In 2022, the Abdallahs turned to their faith again. But, this time, it was not for healing or learning to forgive. Instead, it was gratitude as they welcomed a newborn into their happy clan.
The three surviving children got to name their newborn sibling. They decided to call her Selina -- a mixture between two names of their late siblings, Angelina and Sienna.
THE CYCLE OF LIFE
Leila, elated by their adorable baby, wrote on one of her Instagram posts with a picture of herself, her husband, and their newborn:
"God has answered our prayers. The Lord gives, and the Lord takes, blessed be the name of the Lord."
The little one was born on March 2022, early in the morning. While this child can never replace what the family has lost, it can bring its own version of beautiful love into their lives -- a powerful force for healing.
TO NEVER FORGET
While there is new life, the three children these parents lost will always remain in the back of their minds. They all had distinct personalities -- Antony with his passion for playing boxing and determination and Sienna for her cheeky nature.
Lastly, Angelina was sometimes known as "Angel" for her mature personality and great hugs. While gone from this earth, these three beautiful souls will always be remembered for the beauty they brought to everyone around them.
NEVER TOO OLD
Rosanna Della Corte from Italy also lost her son to a motorbike accident, and like the Abdallahs, she was inconsolable. So, she decided to have another baby, but this proved controversial as she was 63 years old when she gave birth with the help of IVF.
She named the newborn Riccardo after her late son, saying she wanted to keep him alive somehow. But, although she was elated, much of Italy disapproved, including the Catholic church.
The Vatican claimed that her baby was an insult to God. But, the mom herself disagreed. She believed that God was the one who gave her the child.
Many in the county called for banning IVF availability for those who had already experienced menopause. In her opinion on the matter, Corte believes if the case is similar to hers, then it is okay. But, she believes there are certain cases where older women should not have children.
Either way, both mothers view their newborns as gifts from God after facing traumatic situations. Now, they can be more at peace, knowing their little ones were sent from above.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255. Other international suicide helplines can be found at befrienders.org.
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