CYBERJAYA: Widows of MH17 victims are coping with life in a variety of ways. For Asmaa Aljuned, wife of the late Malaysia Airlinesâ€™ first officer Ahmad Hakimi Hanapi, fulfilling a wish she and her husband had made was the way to go.
Yesterday, she opened a Boost Juice store at Dâ€™Pulze, Cyberjaya â€“ three months after the tragic death of her 29-year-old husband.
The young couple had been planning the venture since April, but life dealt them a cruel blow when MH17 was shot down over Ukraine in July. The Boost Juice kiosk also serves as a reintroduction into the working world for Asmaa after she took time off to care for her one-year-old son Abderrahman.
â€œBoost gives a comprehensive approach to people who are health-conscious. It has a good on-the-go concept â€“ if you want something healthy to snack on, you can just grab a juice, granola bar or yoghurt,â€ she said.
Asmaa used the savings she and Ahmad Hakimi, who is better known as Kimi to friends, built up, with some additional financial help from her father to kick-start her new career.
â€œKimiâ€™s brother-in-law decided to assist with the business. He has quit his previous job and is now the store manager, so Iâ€™m happy that I have someone I trust to help me out, especially for night shifts,â€ she said.
â€œI feel happy, but also nervous because you never know how things will turn out. But itâ€™s all right because, after all, rezeki (blessings and prosperity) is in the hands of Allah, so Iâ€™ll just do my best,â€ she said when asked how well she expects her business to do.
Asmaa is also surrounded by a supportive group of people, many of them coming from her extended family.
To deal with her struggles, Asmaa has sought spiritual advice by attending talks given by Muslim scholars and preachers.
â€œI did a lot of soul searching after the incident. Of course, when these things happen, you have no one to turn to except Allah,â€ said Asmaa, who also thanked everyone who had assisted and comforted her during the difficult period.
She thanked family, friends, Malaysia Airlines, the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry, and generous members of public who donated anonymously to her.
â€œLife is going to be hard, but Iâ€™m okay with it. Itâ€™s good to be able to receive help but Iâ€™m ready to move on and stand on my own two feet. I want to embrace life and make Kimi proud.
â€œAll I want is a life full of love for Abderrahman,â€ she said with a smile.-The Star