FootstepsI am asleep in my chair and I wake to the sound of footsteps. Zenita is in the hallway, groggy with sleep.
I have lost my water bottle, she is saying. She looks lost.
Rather than try to find it, I pour her a fresh bottle and take it to her bedroom. I am thinking that we are all sometimes lost in the hallway, and how good it is to be the person who finds her and gives her what she needs.
I stroke her hair as she drinks the water.
When we were at Alex Headland, the twins were playing in the pool with an older girl. The older girl says, I am Tiana, but you can call me Ti. So Naughtyman says, it's your nickname. And he says his nickname is a short version of his name.
Zenita says, in her excited voice, my nickname is Curly Wurly. But only we call her that. It is like her family name. Her hair is curly and blonde, a lot like Mrs Zen's. Zenita is not much like me to look at. You could be forgiven for thinking that I love Zenella so much out of vanity, because she looks and acts so much like me, but I love Zenita just as much. I am not endlessly seeking a mirror, although I sometimes feel that it would be good to find one in a person, someone who understood me.
That they are different increases the joy we find in them. Being a father has revealed to me things about myself that were mysterious to me: not all of them are good things, but I think it is good that I have learnt that I am not limited in my ability to love. When Zenella was born, I loved her so much I didn't believe it was possible to love anyone else, that I had reached my capacity. How could it ever be possible to have that much love in me? But I do.