evi and i were casually drinking our morning coffee while breaking the yolks over the whites and discussing the state of our affairs as dea, evi’s five year old daughter, laid on the carpet, stomach down, and drew a little boy throwing a big boot into a giant trash can. a peculiar imagination, i know. i randomly mentioned how a certain health problem was becoming the catalyst that stirred quite a few heavy aspects … not to mention the severe damage being done to pockets, wallet and bank accounts. we sipped and chewed in between exchanges when dea suddenly sprang up and ran to her room. after some considerable amount of time in her own space and world, dea usually returns to the adult territory made over as a princess, or wearing some ridiculously glittery outfit, or dressed as a skater, headband, wristbands, skates and all, or simply with some very long “hair” by way of mom’s t-shirt on her head. that morning we heard her come back to us with what sounded like the jingle-jangle of coins. lots of them. she appeared at the door and was met with our wondering eyes. she held her piggy bank. “here klodi,” she said. “i have money.”
suddenly things didn’t look so bad.
in a social gathering that evi and her husband held, i stared at my tired face in the bathroom mirror and tried plastering some fake smile over it, preparing myself for the inquisitive minds outside. i looked and felt like utter shit but was determined to have a good time. i wear my heart on my sleeve and find it particularly hard to act against my feelings, but i would damned before i let myself shed another tear. just not on that day. i had promised myself. and so i carried on smiling. talking, but not really. listening, and yet so far. participating, but not quite. sneaked outside, into the backyard, for a minute, sat down and let my cheek muscles relax. took deep breaths and silently told myself. not another tear. not another tear. you promised. and then some movement behind me. “klodi, why are you so sad?” she asked in her little voice.
i broke the only promise i had made that day. and somehow, the load felt a bit lighter.
when her parents threw her a surprise party she was stunned. she just stood there and blushed and blushed and blushed. i could see her as a teenager or even a woman and marveled at her amazing sensibility. her many little and big friends and family gathered around her and sang to her. happy birthday dear dea. her eyes kept hopping around the room and the many faces and when she saw me she stopped. with smiling eyes and a pointed little finger toward herself she mouthed silently “I,” fingers in the air drawing a heart shape, “LOVE,” little finger pointing back to me, “YOU.” i did the same. she walked to me and gave me a hug.
indeed, the world seemed brighter and better.