The Man and The Women – 2

So, to make up for the mistake of sleeping in the other house, I decided to take the day off. I drove to her house after dropping the kids off at school. When I got to her place, she was about to leave the house, door in hand, and yelling at Ah’mad, her son, that he should hurry up or he would be late.

She raised her head and saw me, lashing me with her eyes. You know that look. The one women do by batting or twitching their eyes. I closed my car door. And I blew her a kiss. Her frown turned into a smile.

She turned to Ah’mad who was now coming out of the house and held him, chiding him again for not hurrying up. I walked closer to them and told her if she’d be yelling on the boy then I’d take him to school.

‘Oh, please, you can. Like I wanted to drive before before.’ She whined and went back into the house.

I patted Ah’mad’s head and walked him to my own car. We chatted about school all the way. Ah’mad is Layla’s eight years old boy from her first marriage. The boy is a gentle, very intelligent boy. I love him like he’s my own blood. I pay his tuition and buy him similar gifts I get Ziyad and Sofiyyah. I don’t wait on his father’s off and on child support. I expect his mom to spend on him as she sees fit from what I provide. He calls me Abu, father, instead of the Àbee that Ziyad and Sofiyyah call me. When I wanted to marry Layla, a couple of friends and family tried to doscourage me citing that I’d be the other man in Layla’s life. That I’d come second place in her life to her son. I was so furious at their statement but I maintained my calm because I respected them.

I simply told them if at this point in my life I’m jealous of a woman’s son and I’m craving that much of attention that I actually consider her son as a competitor then I’m not worthy of being called a man. Then I asked them would they like their own children to grow up without a mentor, a good man to look up to, in the case something happened to them?

I got back home at 9:30 am, expecting my wife to be extremely pleased that I was a considerate husband, trying to be fair. But when I got home and asked what was available for me to eat, she went on a tirade about how I didn’t bother to ask if she had things to do during the day before I decided not to go to work and stayed with her.

“Ehn? Tell me, Mr. Husband. Do you think I don’t have plans for myself? What if I wanted to go do Yoga? Or wanted to go say Salaam to my friends? Now you’re here and I have to feed you and clear out my schedule… Ehn.

In my head, I was like which kind wàhálà be this ó. But I maintained my calm and hugged her from the back as she folded clothes in the laundry room. I told her I’d help with the laundry and that she can get something ready for brunch. I could see she was glad but she formed agídí.

That’s Layla. Very expressive. She does not have the gentleness and wisdom of Maymunah, but she’s very bright and brilliant. She’s very savvy with fiqh and has memorized a lot of Qur’an. In fact she was the one who proposed. And she doesn’t let me forget. Whenever there’s an issue, she’s quick to say, “Mr. Man, don’t think because I was the one that approached you so you can do anyhow ó?”

She cooked brunch and we started eating. We were not halfway to the food that my phone began to ring. It was Maymunah. Layla saw “Sweetheart” alongside Maymunah’s photo and hissed slightly.

It was an emergency. Ziyad principal had called that our son fell unconscious and was rushed to the hospital. I had to be on my way…

Layla expression changed immediately. Concern all over her face.

“Subhanallah.” She said. “Is Ziyad going to be alright?”

“In shaa Allah.” I responded. “I have to get going.”

“No.” Layla replied.

No? I asked, flabbergasted.

My mind raced. Who does she think she is? So I should just sit there while my son is in the hospital because it’s her day? What nonsense!

“No, we have to get going. He’s my son too.”

As we drove, speeding up the car between fear and hope, I mentally chided myself for assuming negative intent when Layla said no.

Okay, Baba òní greets again. Shey I can stop now. 🤷🏿‍♂️. See Episode 3 for continuation.

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