I looked back at my home and for a while, could not pull myself away. Leaving was no easy thing to do. This was where I had spent four happy years together with my family, before everything fell apart.
But it was now or never, wasn’t it? Piotr will be home any minute now. If I saw him, I was not sure where I might find the strength to leave. Before he – or I – could change my mind, I got into the cab with my suitcase in the trunk.
At the airport lounge, I sank into the seat and parked my luggage at my feet. There was an hour to spare before my flight. Already, I am starting to wonder if it is the right thing to do, leaving my whole life behind without telling a soul. But I knew I could no longer stay in this place so full of painful memories. Even here.
Kara’s bubbly laughter still echoed so clearly in my mind. Our lives used to be so perfect, with nothing more I could ask for. How could everything have changed in just one day?
My tears welled as I remembered our family’s first and last vacation day. During the wait for our flight, our daughter would repeatedly sprint across the lounge in races against unwitting strangers. So many times had Piotr feigned anger at the playful four-year-old, only to find her unfazed by his act and blowing raspberries back at him.
She was so young.
I tried to steady my trembling hands that longed to hold Kara’s one last time. I was almost relieved when my phone started to ring. But the distraction did not last. I looked at the screen and felt my stomach pit. Piotr must be home by now, sitting in our empty room. I let my phone ring a few more times before I answered the dreaded call.
“Can it wait? My flight’s… soon.”
“Katy, listen. Don’t go.”
It was then I realised: This was the first time Piotr had said my name for the first time in months.
“Look, I’ll see you when I… when I come back,” I pulled my phone away before he could hear me choke up.
Not until now had I realised how much I did miss him. My Piotr, before everything that had happened to us. How I wish he could be here with me. Really here. But would he still want to, after all those times I had blamed him for Kara’s accident? How could he ever forgive me, for accusing him of not loving our daughter as much as I did?
God, I wish I hadn’t done that. My heart ached so much, I could not keep my tears from falling again.
There, right then, a familiar voice closed in behind me. My pain eased, if only for a little while, as he reassured me that everything would be all right.
Without looking back, I knew exactly who it was. This time, Piotr was much closer to me than he had ever been, choking out the words, “I’m not letting you leave this time.”
Daily Prompt: Moxie