“I’m sorry you had to talk about Kyle all night. Was it painful?” Latroy asked.
“It wasn’t too bad,” Kaidis said, and then she was quiet for a long while, staring out of the window watching trees and buildings whiz by. “It’s just not what I ever expected, you know?”
“Hmm?” Latroy stole a quick glance over at her.
“I never thought I’d have twin unplanned babies and then have my husband die shortly after. I never thought I’d be a single mom. I never thought I’d be raising my babies alone.” She sighed. “It’s just not what I thought my life would be.”
Latroy nodded. “I don’t think anyone’s life ever is, but at least you’re a survivor.”
She certainly didn’t feel like that during the immediate aftermath. All she felt was numb. It was a good thing she had two little six month olds literally crying for her attention; otherwise, Kaidis might have completely checked out. And what would have happened to the older kids, who were 14 and 11 at the time? She had never thought before that God gave her the twins at just that time because they would be the string keeping her tied to reality. “I only survived because of God, family, friends, and some counseling. The older kids and I all had some grief counseling, and it really helped. I’m still not sure how Kyle’s death has affected the twins, because they’re so little yet.” Kaidis rubbed her arms. “I’m sad they won’t remember their father.”
“You miss him.” Latroy stated a fact, not asked a question.
“I do.” Kaidis nodded. “I miss him every day, but missing him doesn’t hurt as much as it used to. At first missing him was physical pain. It was like all of my internal organs had been ripped out and passed through a shredder. Everything hurt. Existing was excruciating. I couldn’t even breathe. But now,” she paused, “now I feel like I’m putting back together my bits and pieces that’ve been through the shredder. They’re functioning, you know, but they’ll never be the same. At least now I can miss him and smile at my good memories of him all at the same time.”
“Do you think you’ll ever be able to be with another man?” Latroy was a little afraid to ask, but this is where the conversation was heading anyway.
“I used to think I would never love another man.” She turned to face Latroy. “But that’s changing.”