It’s a term she applies to herself rather than to orphans, because a mother’s loss feels exactly like that – like she’s lost the one title that was important to her. And as she got older, the titles she lost grew in number – “friend”, “sister”, “wife” – until she doesn’t know who she is any more.
It’s a dangerous practice to build an identity on the people around you, but she’s never known a different way. She can only believe there’s nothing left for her, not in this life, and she doesn’t know if she even wants to go to the next life in case the ones who left her behind have forgotten about her, or haven’t waited for her (because they certainly hadn’t bothered to wait in this life).
She has long used up all her tears, and replaced them with her prayers, and wondered if they would reach God like a rainfall in reverse.