Now that he’s gone, the rental hospital bed that dominated the living room for months appears larger. My sisters and I ignore its presence waiting for it to be removed.
When the bed is gone too, we rearrange the furniture into its old layout. We sit side by side on the couch, torn between feelings of relief, abandonment and loss. Then we hear it. Footfalls in his empty bedroom. Leather soles scuffing the hardwood. Strong. Steady. We listen, and for a heartbeat we are young again—three little girls waiting for our father to drive us for ice cream once more.