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“I’m done.” I look into Jason’s eyes. “She’s all yours.” He looks into mine.
“What happened?” He asks, slipping one hand into the pocket of faded jeans and the other through dark strands.
“She was out of control tonight. So wild. Not listening. I’m going to take a shower.”
My footsteps rough against my ears.
My mouth sets; I’m not ready to smooth these edges yet.
I wrap myself in water and steam and cotton and fleece. And then, I come back.
The beige carpet gives against my bare toes. I step into the family room, lean against the wall, rely on its coolness.
Their heads nestle, chocolate mixed with caramel.
Her pudgy fingers, wrapped in little girl, rest on his knees. Her chestnut locks, wrapped in big girl, are swept in a newfound ponytail.
It reveals her.
Jawline set, eyes focused, fuschia tinted lips tight.
“Do you want to tell Mommy what we’re doing?” Jason’s voice fills the space between us.
I step closer, settle onto the carpet. She steps in, settles against me.
Her pink tights glisten by moonlight, her sheer skirt does the same.
Eyes wide and cheeks rosy, she starts, “I didn’t know how to do shuffle steps. They’re so hard!”
“But we looked it up, right? Do you want to show Mommy?” Jason asks.
She nods, grazes her fingertips against mine, and steps forward.
Shoulders back, hands on hips, ponytail swinging.
She insisted on “Dancer Hair” tonight. I brushed and pulled and wrapped that hair. And now I truly see her in it- mostly angles and cheekbones laced with only a wisp of little girl.
Her feet move quickly, tapping each smooth step.
She’s center-stage, Dancer Hair and all.