I feel like I might have posted this before but I don't remember. lol.
“This is just crazy,” I muttered angrily, watching the instructor put on what looked like a trainer wheel for a metal blade boot for my daughter. Allowing her to stand up right while Homer sat on the bench to change out his shoes.
“This will help her remain standing without the wobbly ankles,” the freckled instructor said as she held up Violet’s little boot to show me. “Say Mommy, I’ll be okay. I’m a big girl.”
Violet just stared at her. Full chocolate cheeks overflowing, stuffed in her winter coat to her chin wearing purple mittens while her idiodic father sat cheerfully on the bench beside her, grinning at me while exchanging his shoes out. Of course he wore no coat. Just a stupid orange shirt, jeans and a smile that said he knew he was going to get a good laugh at me.
“Pia put the boots on,” he demanded.
“I’m not meant to balance on a blade for Christ’s sake. I rather watch,” I pouted, looking out at the large arena where there was hardly anybody skating on it. Everyone was out doing the normal thing. Black Friday shopping, but Homer decided it was best to get me sent to the hospital instead.
“Ohhh look at her!” The instructor cooed, getting Violet to stand on her own two feet as I eyed the black boots carefully. “She is just the cutest with those little cheeks of hers. Looks like somebody is ready to go! What do you think Mom?! Is it safe to go on?!”
I glared at the bubbly white woman who was doing everything she could to remain professional, even if she knew by my stare that I was ready to snap her neck but I smiled.
“Let’s show Mama how it's done. You ready to go Daddy?”
“Daddy is ready to go,” Homer boasted, slowly standing up. “Athlete all my life. This ain’t nothing but another sport to me.”
I watched the instructor shuffle Violet out into the opening of the rink as she picked her up before gently placing her on the ice. Homer stepped out behind her, grabbing on to the walls, and as big as he is, he looked like he was staring death in the face when he looked at the ice.
“Oh naah,” he laughed nervously. “This ain’t what I thought it was. Hold on---.”
“No, no you stay your big behind out there Mr. Athlete,” I laughed, watching him struggle to find his balance before he stood awkwardly in place. Meanwhile, the instructor gave Violet a red stand to hold on to for pushing. The smallest little moment like seeing Violet smile as the instructor encouraged her to move forward might have been the boost I needed to grab my white boots with the pink laces. My camel coat draped past my knees with a Spelman hoodie on, and jeans as I said a silent prayer before strapping up.
“You okay back there Dad?!” The woman laughed as Homer gripped the wall, unable to move forward or backwards. “Your daughter is already showing pro talent. Look at her!”
Violet might have taken an inch forward with the walker, hardly moving at all but at least she was moving, and smiling.
“You coming?” Homer let out, gripping the wall before standing in front of the opening as he waited for me.
“You can go on. I’ll be out there in a second Homer.”
“I can wait.”
“I can wait,” I mocked with a roll of my eyes before slowly standing up. “Oh! OH! NO! NO MA’AM!” I hollered, feeling my ankles about to give out. “This is not safe! At all!”
“Who you hollering at?” Homer laughed, while holding his hand out. “Come here. I’m twice your size---.”
“Homer do not let me fall,” I threatened, gripping his hand. When he started to pull me forward, I screamed. “HOMER?! I’m still on carpet! I’m---!”
“Bring yo ass on then Pia! Damn! I got you!”
“I don’t think you do!”
Homer took one step up, and wrapped a single arm around my body with a strong grip to pull me forward. I never screamed so loud, not expecting him to be able to pick me up the way he did until I felt him gently place me on the ice before him.
“Oh my God, ohhh my God,” I whined, gripping his waist as my feet struggled to stand still in the heavy boots. He was still holding on to the wall with the other hand for balance when he let his final foot come back down on the ice. “This is not safe at all.”
“You need to calm down James Brown---.”
“It’s not funny!”
“Look at your feet though! You cutting up down there!” He laughed as I straightened up, adjusting my simple ponytail with a whip to the back before taking a deep breath. Didn’t matter if I was face first into his chest. I was holding on to the only thing solid around me.
“When I let go of this wall now?” He warned as his hand slowly pulled back. “Pia don’t grab on me like that! I’m---!”
“I’m trying to stay alive at this point!” I screamed as his body wobbled back and forth. I tried to take one step between his legs before my body somehow flung backwards with my arms flailing in the air. I screamed so loud, trying to cling on to the walls when Homer grabbed me as he took a hard fall to the ice on his back with me on top of him.
“Fuck!” He hollered in pain before laughing as I hovered over his face.
“You remember when you asked me if I ever been ice skating before? You remember that?” I snapped.
“You okay Daddy?!” The woman yelled out. “You took a hard fall!”
“And why does she keep calling you that?” I muttered, attempting to get up as he slowly sat up from the ice.
“You wanna go check on your parents?” The woman asked as Violet looked back at us before shaking her head as she focused on her feet. One inching over the other.
“Let’s just stay up on the walls for now until we can get it,” Homer suggested. “I’ll stay behind you so you don’t fall. Come on. I’m not about to look stupid in front of my own kid.”
Four more falls later, Homer was in gut wrenching tears with laughter while I was concentrating, like an old lady trying to win a foot race at a senior home. He apparently caught on quick like Violet and was able to skate while I still held on to the walls for support, not willing to take the chance. Violet had already made a full circle, and caught up with us when Homer decided to take her hands. Keeping her in front of him as the two shuffled on the ice together, and as much as I hate to admit it? Despite falling, and almost cracking my skull? I haven’t had this much fun in a long time.
“Let’s get a picture for our Happy Wall!” The woman yelled, holding out her phone. “Mama, I need you to get in there!”
“You’re practically in the center of the rink! I can’t get over there!” I yelled, holding the wall as Homer stood and posed with his daughter, both smiling proudly as the woman took pictures. When Homer held out his phone for her to use, he bent down to Violet’s height as they smiled together.
“Damn it,” I muttered, leaning forward with my arms spread wide as I tried to skate towards the two. Homer grabbed my hand to pull me close.
“Okay let’s see some pretty smiles!”
“Did you enjoy yourself?” He asked as I smiled brightly with my hand on my hip.
“I might have,” I muttered through my teeth.
“One more because you all look so beautiful! I need Daddy to look over here!”
“So are you available for dinner tomorrow night? Just you, and me?”
I looked up at him with a turned up nose, and twisted mouth. Fighting back a smile.
“You really think you are the finest thing to walk this earth,” I said instead as he laughed.
“Be grateful I’m gracing you with my presence and charm baby. Only get the girlfriend treatment from me for a weekend. After that, you back to being a simple baby mama that got lucky,” he said, letting his hand playfully brush over my face as I laughed. “So is that a yes?”
“What about Violet?”
“I got sisters in Atlanta. They’ll watch her.”
“Hey! The camera is this way! Parents?!” The woman squealed, trying to get our attention but Homer kept his eyes on me.
“Is this you attempting to get back what I took from you?”
“It is, but I would like to wine and dine you first. I’m still gonna…” He paused with a stare that had a double meaning. He licked his lips, and paused… letting his tongue sit on his bottom lip before slipping back inside. As if he was just giving me a peek of what’s to come. “Eat,” he finished. “Even if you don’t.”
Oookay sir… You are really trying to seduce me, and you think I’m just that easy? That I’ll just fall head over heels and say yes? Pullease…
“I guess that’s fine Homer,” I cracked, clearing my throat. “I’m free this weekend,” I said, looking down at our daughter who grinned up at us, showing all of her baby teeth.