I woke up this morning with Leena in mind. I have to call her today. Somehow, my telepathic mind sensed something is not right.
Just then, an SMS alerted me - It's her.
Over a cup of morning coffee, we talked for more than an hour over the phone - Her husband had spilled everything. What's the next step?
Unlike other times when she was stopped from taking further action, this time, the husband wanted her to make a report of his infidelity. His wayward married life has been going on since the beginning of their 12 years together being husband and wife.
Their first honeymoon month had already being marred with a former girlfriend came into picture -Their marriage was sort of, the arranged marriage
A reunion for all former schoolmates were held with Hari Raya home visits to all schoolmates' houses. Firdaus's parents were immediately pleased to see Leena, a religious girl with pleasant personality, and shows high respect towards the elders.
Firdaus, tight-lipped, followed his parents' choice and Leena's widowed mother thought it's high time for her last daughter to settle down, being 25 then.
Then, incidences started to unfold itself.
Firdaus's girlfriend demanded the return of all her cash - He's been swiping credit cards and she's been footing his bills. They'd been together for 7 years then, with marriage on the card. Now, with no marriage proposal in picture, she demanded another S$10,000 to start life afresh in Australia.
It was frustrating to see Leena settled all his finances.
Not long after, when Leena brought Firdaus to court to dissolve their marriage as she found out that he's having an affair with 2 other women at the same time - she found out too that she was carrying their first child - thus the court process had to wait until after childbirth.
She had tried to talk to her mother, Mak Habsah, or her stepmother, to be exact.
To Mak Habsah, let fate takes its due course - Her life has been a struggle all along.
Habsah, a bright and intelligent lady, had wanted to be a nurse since young, but her ambition was short-lived. No single girls in her days then, were to venture out of their village in Pontian, alone, except to follow husband upon marriage. So, she spent her days in the village writing poems, stories and dramas for magazines and radio stations.
She turned down several marriage proposals with scoldings from her parents for not being filial - to follow her parents' wish in seeing her getting married.
But when she accepted this arranged proposal by a man with 8 small children who's wife had just died due to child-birth complication, she received more scoldings from not only parents, but siblings and relatives.
She was already 30 years old by then, a wise person to chart her life ahead.
The baby whose mother died after giving birth to, is Leena.
Mak Habsah has no children of her own. Her married life was only to nurse, raise, educate and married off her 8 stepchildren, almost singlehandedly, since her husband died into their 4 years of marriage. Leena was 4 years old then, and Mak Habsah's eldest stepchild was 16, about to take her O level.
Leena, by now, busy with her 3 kids, has only deaf ears hearing stories of her husband's philandering lifestyle.
Firdaus, somehow, is closely attached to his children and Leena do not want the fatherly figure that she did not have, to be taken away from her children too.
Only when her children, now aged 7, 9 and 11, had started to ask questions, then she decided to pursue matters which she had longed withheld - The children were curious to know why Papa has to send his friend home, everyday, when fetching them from school.
When confronted, Firdaus admitted lying to his girlfriend, a single mother of 2 teenagers, saying that he's been separated from his wife, Leena.
To add salt to the already wounded story, he's being pressed by the girlfriend's parents for a marriage to take place the soonest possible.
Leena had tried to talk to her parents-in-law, but, the answer was as expected. The reason why Leena was chosen as a daughter-in-law was because, she, being religious, will eventually guide Firdaus to the straight path and, infidelity does run in the family - the in-laws admitted without any guilt.
Of all women that Firdaus is having an affair with, now, is a teaching staff in his children's school...
Now I can understand why Jack Neo's wife chose to close an eye seeing his KABOOM!!! story.
***Changes were made where appropriate.