CHAPTER 49

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CHAPTER 49

Ahmad heard a knock on the door of the study, he waited for Zinar to come in. She gave him a closed-lip smile that looked forceful and he instantly wished she didn't. "Hy," he said as he sat up wiggling a pen in between his fingers. She closed the door and stood by it as her lips hesitated to move.

"I was hoping you could join me for a session in therapy" she finally said.

"Since when did you start?"

"Starting tomorrow" she informed.

"Sure, whatever you need"

"It's couples therapy" she clarified hesitant and he was quiet for a while,

"Do we need a shrink to psychoanalyze our problems?" he asked and she was quiet. She also didn't like the idea but Abdullah had suggested it and he urged her to give it a try and she couldn't say no.

"I don't know but things are not getting any better" she finally spoke,

"You think it'll work?"

"It feels wrong to bare our problems to a stranger but Abu advised we tried"

"We don't have to do it if you don't want," he said disregarding the fact that it was his father's advice.

"There is no harm in trying," she said missing what they used to be. He nodded hoping so too, sitting down with a stranger to talk about his marital problems in search of guidance didn't sit well with him but he was willing to do whatever it took.

The therapist was a Muslim, middle-aged Pakistani- English woman. She was dressed in a dull pink straight gown, her hair covered with a small hijab. She had a warm smile and had fallen in love with the kids instantly. Her clinic was quite big and looked like a homey.

"How long have you been married?" she asked after all the introductions were made.

"Almost six years" Ahmad answered and she voiced a ma sha Allah and gave a small smile.

"Have you ever been to couples therapy before?" she asked and Zinar shook her head while Ahmad responded with a no. "Mr Abdullah," she said and he cut her off,

"Please call me Ahmad, Abdullah is my father," he said politely and she nodded.

"Zinar didn't say much on the phone" she smiled at Zinar who mostly had a poker face and gave small smiles here and there. "Why do you think you need this?" she asked and he looked at his wife for a while and at the office heedlessly trying to phrase his words.

"Um! I made a wrong choice and it's affecting our home," he looked between her and Zinar. She nodded as she jotted down what he said. "We want things to get back as they were."

"Do you think what he did is forgivable" she turned to Zinar.

"Yes," she answered without looking at him.

"What's stopping you?"

"I don't know" she replied and the Dr. wrote more in her pad.

"How about some role-playing?" she asked with a professional smile. "Let's say you're him and he's you. I need you to turn and face each other" she said and they awkwardly shifted to gaze at each other. "What would you have wanted him to do when he heard the news? What would you have done?" she asked.

"Communication was always an open room for us," she said her eyes on him, she could see him clench and unclench his jaw, his gaze was soft and pleading. She turned her gaze away, "We spoke about everything. I just wished you talked to me," she said casually. The Dr. looked at Ahmad waiting for him to say something.

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