Yesterday was the 5th – the day of the month when we became a couple. We used to celebrate this day every month and it has been our tradition for him to give me 5 yellow (or rather, red-yellow) roses on this day. I could no longer remember the last time he did, so yeah, it has been quite a while.

The sun was already up when he went home that morning and it was just in time for him to get ready for work. This has become a habit lately and I should be getting used to it but I still can’t. When he arrived, I did not have the urge to get up. I was disappointed that he did not remember to text at midnight to greet me – that was a tradition, too. But when he was about to leave, a stared blankly at him and gave him a hug and greeted him. He said, I was just about to greet you. Okay, I’ll pretend to believe you.

Because it also happened to be my day off, I thought he might come at lunch time to eat. If it were just me, I would not bother to cook anymore, I would be content with bread and jam and coffee. But since he might come, I had to force myself to cook. I’m sure I would get compared to her again if I don’t. Because I was not sure if he’s really coming, I ate lunch with two roommates – I did not want to wait for him. I don’t want to call him just to ask because it would be like telling him to come and I want him to choose to do that because he wants to and not because I asked.

About 20 minutes later, he arrived. I was sitting on my roommate’s bed writing my previous post and when I saw him walking swiftly to our bed. I followed him and asked him if he already wants to eat. I prepared his meal, he ate, and commented that he is not satisfied with what I cooked. That’s fine, I did not really give that much effort to it anyway. He always has comments about my cooking, even when I really make a huge effort doing it. I don’t really cook so he knows that what I prepare is always a labor of love. But his lack of appreciation has made me lose inspiration. Before, I used to google a lot of recipes and I enjoyed experimenting. I wanted to always prepare something different for him and I would get really excited about meal time. But with my spirit crushed, I have lost all that zest.

We lay down after he ate and that was when I saw the flowers. Awwwww,,,,I said. Thank you, and I hugged him.

Before he left I gave him another hug and thanked him again. He looked at me in the eye and said in a semi-sarcastic tone, “Okay, are you happy now?” Arggggghhhhhh, he never fails to spoil the moment.

Destiny or Free Will?

Two Fridays ago the Imam had a discussion on Qadar and free will. By definition, it’s not difficult to tell which is which. But listening to him got me thinking. My husband’s decision to remarry definitely falls under free will. Despite being contradicted by other people, he stuck to what he wanted. Clearly, that was not qadar.

But his decision affected me. So does it mean that it is my qadar to suffer for a decision that I did not make? How fair is that? That was all his doing but why must I be the one to go through hell because of it? I’m not questioning God, just wondering. If God meant for me to suffer this way (for reasons only he knows), that means it was already written that my husband decides to get married. So then that’s not free will after all. I don’t want to spark a debate. This is just me blabbering because the bus was late on my way home and I needed something to occupy myself with. I ended up confused.

Anyway, I just wonder how this situation will come out in the end. I would like to think that God has a wonderful plan for making me go through this. I hope he did not destine me to live through this pain forever. If I use my free will and decide to walk away now, would it then be my husband’s qadar that I leave him? Then my decision won’t be purely free will, wouldn’t it? On the sideline, free will or not, he might actually be happy with me walking away.

Speaking of which, we almost did separate. Last Thursday, on my way home, I called one of the sisters to pick me up so that I could go to the majlis. But hubby told me after dinner not to go that night. He said she wanted to go and asked me to give way. What the %#@*%? Should my social schedule adjust to hers as well? Isn’t it enough that he is already spending twice and sometimes even thrice the time that he is spending with me? Must I also make my already small world smaller for them?

It is just not fair anymore. On second thought, I know it will never really be fair anymore. But to “give way” for her? Have I not given all out already? I thought it was very selfish of my husband to ask that of me. He knows that going to the majlis is my only ‘escape’ from my life with him and to give that up so that they could go TOGETHER, even for just a day, is just unreasonable. Hubby is just so concerned with her and is really taking care not to let our paths cross because she said that she does not want to meet me. Like I was the one causing her misery. It mostly feels like I’m the second wife in the sense that I’m the one who’s always adjusting to what they’ve had going along for a long time.

To not start a fight and be accused of being the selfish one, I gave way. My husband said that since it is his day off the following day, he wants to spend more time there and will go home at 6 am. Okay, anything else to go with that sir? It’s also my day off and I hoped for him to spend more time with me, but fine. I don’t want to be his puppy who’s always begging for attention all the time.

He did not come home at 6 am.  Still not at home at 7…8….9…10….At 10:30 he finally arrived with no apologies, no sense of guilt whatsoever. It was like “I will go home if and when I want to and you cannot do anything about it. Just be thankful that I am here.” I flared up. I told him that because he spent the whole night and most of the morning there he will have to spend that night in our apartment- in the spirit of fairness. I knew he would not agree but I just wanted to find out how he will talk his way out of it. He did not say anything. I found out later that they did not go to the majlis. When I asked him why, he reasoned that the drivers did not pick them up on time and she did not like waiting long. Okay, he could have told me they were no longer going so that I could have gone but he didn’t. He has totally lost all sensibility – and sensitivity.

He was supposed to have Jumaa at the mosque near our apartment but I swayed him to come with me to where the other brothers and sisters go. He agreed but told me to wait for him at the taxi stand because she might see us together. Darn.

After Jumaa he said that he has to go back to her because he promised that they will have lunch together. He said we could just meet at the Islamic Center after lunch. While I strained to find a ride to the center, he went off to her. It never fails to break me to see him rush that way to see her. She is just so lucky.

He arrived at the center at around 2:30 and I asked if he told her what I said about him spending the night in our apartment. He said yes and then went to the gents’ study area and I went to the ladies’. Classes end at asr prayer, and that was when he told me to go home alone (or go with the other sisters somewhere) because he needs to fix something in her apartment. My ears are already bleeding hearing him talk about her this often. We already agreed that we will go home together after asr but promises made with me have not been a priority lately. It sounded like I didn’t really have any choice.

The Imam’s wife, the first, with whom I have been confiding, was kind enough to allow me to tag along with her and her friends. We drove around while I poured out all my frustrations and all three sisters spoke to me about sabr, sabr, sabr at the same time. They understood where I was coming from but their views were divided when it comes to my husband’s unfairness. The two said I should be patient with my husband but at the same time stand my ground. He should be fair to you both, they said. They are second wives and it is good to be hearing their perspective on the matter. The Imam’s wife on the other hand advised me to just let him be. She said, sabr, they are still new that’s why he wants to spend most of his time there. She said, just as the Imam said, that if I don’t nag, in the end, he will realize the unfairness that he has done and come back to me. Such conviction she has, I hope it is true.

I was down in the dumps but I felt better talking to them. It helps to be around people who know what I am going through. Well, they do not actually know all but at least they know the essentials.

I told them how I told my husband that he has to spend the night with me because he spent the previous one with her. They all agreed he should. I said let’s wait if he will.

He didn’t. It was already 12 midnight but he said they are still not done fixing her apartment. He has already used up my time. What’s the point of him coming home at 1am or so when we could no longer talk and hang out by then? Where’s the quality time in that? I told him that I would just go the majlis and he can just spend the night at home the following day because I have no more time left with him to bond anyway. He said okay. I told him before I left to keep his phone next to him so that he can pick me up downstairs when I come home.

I went home at around 4 am and as expected, he wasn’t there to meet me. Again running like crazy on my way to our apartment, I thought I just had it with him. When he went home in the morning just in time to take a bath to get ready for work, I shared my all my frustration with him. To have unfairness shoved at me one after another was just too much. I was ranting and he said he has had enough. He blurted out the words that we vowed never to mention – “let us go our separate ways,” he shouted. I was still furious and I continued to rant and he said it again – “let us go our separate ways!” When in continued with my outburst telling him how unfair he was being he aimed at hitting me and said, “I could just hit you so that you’ll let me go.” I told him at the start of our marriage that I will leave the moment he lays a finger on me. I said “Go ahead!” I pulled his shirt when he wanted to walk out and I asked him to stay to sort things out.

That was when I calmed down. I hugged him tight and he allowed me. He did not hug back, though. I thought to myself that I was not ready to stand alone. Not just yet. I told him that I am only being this way because I love him. Could he not see that the root of all this is just so shallow? – I simply wanted to spend more time with him, that’s all.

It occurred to me when I told him I love him that I no longer love him like before. Something has changed and my love has somehow waned. I still love him but not with as much intensity as I did two months ago before all this happened. It made me sad. I did not mean for us to be like this. I hope he sees that too.

I have been having recurring dreams again about losing my slippers when I enter a room. I googled it and one result just hit me. It said that divorce was awaiting me. Wasn’t that coincidental?