Alone At Last

When Chris simply texted me that he was on his way to the cabin with Zoe I suddenly realized what he must have been feeling when I announced a few days ago I would be heading to Brooklyn. I sat down on the couch and even though nothing had changed except for that text, everything seemed even quieter. Even my cats padded through the room so softly they were like little ghosts.

My heart was aching for Zoe. I knew she was so safe with her dad and that she would have an amazing time (and had plenty of clothes and gluten-free food there) at the cabin…yet my heart still ached. It was a little frightening to have her whisked away without even a conversation about it first. I didn’t even get a chance to say goodbye.

I picked up my phone off the couch and called Chris.

“Hello?”

“Can I talk to Zoe?”

“She’s not going to talk back.”

“I know. Just put it on speaker please.”

I heard the radio in the car then I heard it turned down. I took a breath.

“Hi Zoe,” I said, cheerily.

I heard Chris whisper, “Say hi to mommy.”

“Hi Mommy” she said on command.

“Have fun at the cabin, I love you. See you on Sunday.”

“Actually, Monday” Chris said.

“Monday?”

“Yes. Is that OK?”

“I guess so.” I started to cry.

“OK, good.”

“Chris, I’m really…”

“I don’t want to talk about it,” he said.

silence.

“Take good care of her” I said.

“Of course I will,” he snapped. Then he softened. “You know I always do, Odette,” he said.

“I know.”

He hung up, without even saying bye. I put the phone down and leaned over and sobbed into my hands on my knees…knowing that I had utterly done this to myself and that there was no one else to blame. In a weird way though, it was like this is what I had wanted the whole time. I was shocked at that thought and sat up and drew in a sharp breath. I wiped my eyes and looked around the room blinking away the tears. I was alone, Zoe was fine, I was going to be able to be alone the whole entire weekend. Oh the possibilities. I ran to the bed and pulled out from underneath, a large plastic container with the material I had bought with Astrid while I was visiting her in NY. She knows where the amazing fabric shops are and I had found some incredible pieces. I spread them all across the dining room table then went outside to get my sewing machine out of the shed then brought it in to set up on the table. I would make Zoe a dress. And then I would go and buy some rose bushes for the garden, then tonight I would perhaps even call Lisa to see if she wanted to go out dancing. I hadn’t really been returning many of her calls though lately, not excited about explaining how horrible I was being to Chris. So hopefully she would call me back. I looked around the house and decided to pamper myself as I sewed. Hmm, time for some of MY favorite music, no Barney or Dinosaur Jr. Then my mind drifted to Jake. I walked out to the front of the house and looked down the street. His black truck was not parked across the lawn like usual. Well, I guess I was really going to get a chance to see what it would be like to truly be alone for a little while. I couldn’t help but smile a little.

Song for dancing in the living room:

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About Odette

Odette's character is written by Emmerson Grace Hayes. email: ungratefulbliss@gmail.com If only small talk could be replaced by dancing...
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