Somewhere between fall and summer and fall again, Rashed and I had gone from husband and wife, to sparring divorcées, to almost (but not quite) friends, to the awkward position he had put me in today; where in his final chapter of “Let’s Ruin Noor’s Life,” Rashed is determined to win me back, and make me look like the villain in his god awful book.
A reconciliation. Just like that. And no one would ever mention anything ever again. My mother was over the moon, “You should try to work things out with him, abu wladik, walaw!” How could she forgive him, walaw? I choose not to argue, after all Mama’s excitement I could overlook, my children’s however was not as easy to ignore.
“Do you think you and dad could be a couple again?” My teenage daughter asked the following morning. I reckon she’d overheard another one of my very private, nighttime conversations with her Baba. As an overly emotional, young woman growing into her own, these days my daughter always seemed to have a twinkly-eyed definition of love, and couples, and “kissing on the lips,” which she talked about nonstop. And I, torn between being the cool mom and the mom who screams “aibe!”, would always come up with the most cryptic and completely irrelevant answers. “Your baba and I love each other very much,” she makes a face. “And what’s more important is that we love you and your brother and will always be there for you.”
Truthfully, a small part of me wasn’t completely closed off to the idea of getting back together. I could move back into the beautiful home we had created for our children, I could reconnect with the friends I had lost along the way, I would once again be financially comfortable, and Rashed. Akh, Rashed. He could be really sweet when he wanted to. And I missed him, sometimes terribly.
My ex arrives the next day on time to pick up the kids for the weekend, I make an effort to look presentable as I walk them to his car. He tells me I look nice, I tell him I’m going out. He nods his head. “Well, we’ll be at home making tacos. You should join us if you finish early,” he offers. The old Noor would’ve jumped at the chance to spend time with him, but the new me, empowered by half a dozen self-help books, knew better. “Maybe next time,” I whisper and saunter off the same way Sama used to. You know; part vamp, part lady, part irreparable mess.
He sighs, “You really do look lovely tonight.”
I blush and immediately hate myself for feeling just the tiniest bit pink all over, all over again.
To catch up on part 1, click here.