Gloria sat in the back of the room, hoping not to see her ex-husband. With his new wife.
Tabitha’s graduation ceremony will take no more than thirty minutes –- she remembered from her son’s, two years back. Her babies were grown and moving on. Her life, alone, will soon be hers to bear.
A clack of heels behind and she saw Sandra Fang, PTSA parent and self-appointed popularity guru. “A joy to watch.” Sandra displayed a half smile as if she’d saved the rest for later, or for someone else.
Whispers and laughter circled around. The happiness volume constantly turned up by the joy of seeing children at the edge of adulthood, ready for the next big step.
A thrill if she didn’t seat squeezed by families she’d known since seventh grade. There was no escaping the familiar faces today. Those who’d watched her life unravel. Families that were still a unit, unlike her and Jackson.
Hang in there, Gloria. She’d sneak in for a couple of pictures with Tabby, then slip out of the auditorium before Jackson made his way to congratulate their daughter. With his new wife. Maybe he’d have the good sense to mingle among the crowd first. Introduce her to fathers he played golf with. Fresh off his honeymoon, he’d boast like he always did. Talk about the Catamaran and the BIV waters. Another way to show her off — the much younger woman, according to the rumor mill. Too tall, according to Tabby, almost as tall as Jackson with long, red hair. A washed-out red.
None of this was Gloria’s business. She rolled her watch bracelet — one o’clock. Any moment now.
The day belonged to her beautiful daughter, who graduated high school today. Next week she’ll be off to college, two states away, following in her brother’s footsteps. Gloria will be a divorced empty nester. And life will go on somehow. It always did.
Image courtesy: yan profil kadın resmi,