When Mira’s husband left her without any explanation, she had to learn to become a superwoman in order to survive. As told to Liyana Zamzuri
I was preparing breakfast and thinking about what else I should get from the grocery store later, when Fird stormed into the kitchen and announced that he was leaving. The milk bottle was half empty. I asked him where he was going before telling him, “I need your favor lah Firdaus, can you go the grocers for me?”
He said, “No Mira, I’m leaving you.” I started laughing as if it was some kind of joke and said he had to wait for me to finish the grocery list first. He looked at me in despair and said, “I won’t be here later, and I won’t be here tomorrow. I’ve packed and am moving in with Jeda, I’m marrying her.”
It was like an atomic bomb going off.
The good old days
Flashback to my life before the bomb fell. I had just given birth to our beautiful baby girl when, my husband found out he would be losing his job. After being unemployed for quite some time, he was eventually offered a new position, but it was five hours north of where we lived. We were not sure if, or when, another opportunity would come along. So Firds decided that we needed to relocate.
I quit my job and we even put our house on the market. We saw the move as an adventure. It wasn’t smooth sailing to begin with… the move and transition were rough. Being a city girl my entire life, I had to live in a one-bedroom shop house, juggling a mortgage and rent. We had to acclimatise to new jobs, new childcare, and also a new community.
But, things settled down and with the sale of our house, we eventually moved into a new three-bedroom home in a neighbourhood full of families. We could finally breathe again, and we were slowly getting used to living in the suburbs. We started making new friends too. At the time I tossed a grin over my shoulder and said, “We did it, Firds!”
It’s all coming back to me
Or did we? Months down the road, Firds dropped the bomb and moved out, with no warning and no discussion. Nothing! In hindsight, were there signs that my husband was cheating on me? Maybe. Jeda was his colleague, whose existence that I know of. A thorn among the roses at the refinery plant, she had that je ne sais quoi that awes people. He was spending a lot of time at the refinery plant, but he was an engineer after all so that wasn’t exactly a smoking gun.
I had known Firds for eight years by then. We went to university together in Wales, where I studied to become an actuary. Our ritual association meetings slowly brought us closer. He was my confidant for years before we swore to be together forever as man and wife. But I guess life isn’t all about fairytales and perfect endings.
Our sex life had dwindled in the previous year, but I thought it was normal considering the move and a baby to care for. I was too busy to notice the signs. In hindsight, it was clear that he had been having an affair the entire time our family was in transition. What husband relocates his family only to leave them? His betrayal hit home; I knew that there would be no going back. Firds was like an actor who made a cameo in my life. He’s just another name on the list of performers who never really cared about the role but only wanted the attention.