Felicity wanted to dance. Hopefully she had my genes. It was something I’d been good at. It transported me.
Jean had two left feet, but by the time I got her onto a dance floor I was already smitten and her stumbling didn’t matter to me.
Though I had to almost carry her we managed a passable waltz on our wedding day. When she tired of what she called being flung around she retreated to the bridal table. Her friends queued up like debutantes to partner me.
She’d never been jealous of it. Until the day we began to fall apart. She came home to find Felicity and me spinning around the lounge room. As a dancer Felicity had the grace her mother lacked. One look suggested Jean wasn’t impressed. We had something she didn’t.
That’s all I thought of her sullenness until she broke the silence of our evening with a flurry of words, as if a dam had been holding them back. ‘You can’t be like that with her, Larry. It’s too intimate. She’s your daughter. She’s not a little girl any more. What the hell do you think…’
On and on. Not realising what she was doing. Every sentence making me love her less. Until I said, ‘shut up Jean, for God’s sake,’ and everything changed.