“Do you need to talk to someone?”
She meant a therapist. It had been over a year since I’d contacted Doctor Fenberg, and I was in no hurry to do so now. I was certain I could get over my insecurities on my own.
“I just need to remember, that’s all.”
“That you love me; that you love us.”
She kissed my shoulder again, threaded her fingers through mine. “More than I love breathing.”
I slipped into a peaceful slumber shortly after that.
I took a whiff of my sweat-drenched sports top, and made a face. For an arduous hour of high intensity interval training, aka HIIT, at the gym in our apartment complex, it could have been worse. In any case, I needed to get home and shower before Naomi and the kids got back from their Sunday afternoon park visit. Has anyone ever been dumped because they smelled bad after a workout? I wondered as I headed to the exit.
I waved goodbye to one of the personal trainers who worked there, then made my way home, which was two floors above.
As I entered the corridor leading to our apartment, I saw my brother, Dove, waiting by the door.
“Hey,” I called out, unable to hide my surprise at seeing him. “Did I miss a text or something?” He usually called or sent a message whenever he was coming over. Gone were the days when he could drop by unannounced, fall apart and wait for me to put him back together again. Luckily, when my life came together, so too did his. He’d been clean for three years, after a relapse shortly after my wedding. But he was healthier than he’d ever been. He’d been booking gigs like never before.
I still hadn’t gotten used to the buzz cut he’d been sporting for a few months now. Dove without hair was like a stranger.
Only as I got closer did I notice there was someone standing behind him.
The man slowly stepped into view, and my heart skipped a beat. The pit of my stomach felt like it would fall out.
“No,” was all I could manage, as I stared into the face of my father.