burien. parking lot. double chain link fence. long long grass.
her first ballet recital.
the dress rehearsal.
sitting in the car with the door open.
the breeze is warm and calm. it feels like summer.
when she is done she runs out and jumps into my arms. her tutu is gold and white and way too shiny in the sun. she hugs me hard. she hugs with her arms and legs and stuck on like a baby orangutan. she smells like hairspray. i carry her to the car even though she is too big now.
i don't know how to tell her. i don't know what to tell myself. i am conscious of each inhale and make an effort to exhale. i fight the urge. the burning pain to just cry. just cry. sob. let go and let my body fall. scream and punch and snot and spit. and just sob. i want to be a broken heap on the floor.
but i don't. i drive her home. we talk about ballet. i tell her i am proud of her. that she is an amazing dancer.
i found out today that my dad has cancer.