The novel takes you on a transformational journey with the women of "Renegotiating Kayla". Read along as the women let go of their public faces, and begin to reveal fears and truths. You will witness an unarmoring of each character’s confidence, as they heed the warning to get real, and in particular, real honest. *Read Chapters in Sequence using the Index.
Chapters 18 and 19, Aisha Notified and Ketly's Baby Tale
A Better Pair of Shoes, a novel Chapter 18 and 19
I dropped by the pharmacy to fill my second script. At the counter, I waited for the male
pharmacist. Just my luck! I felt a heat rising from within as I was
overcome with embarrassment. He raised
his eyes up from the computer screen, glanced at me, and looked back down onto
the script. I used my left hand that
hosted my wedding ring to flick a nonexistent thing from my face. I wanted him to know that I was the one who
was caught up and not caught out there.
Funny, how when I was way out there I hadn’t caught a single thing—not
even the flu, and now I was standing here; a married woman with the gonorrhea. I quickly swiped my bank card and jetted out
of the cold store; back into the warmth of my car. I sat there for a moment, realizing that my
life was beginning to feel like a movie again.
At home I opened the small paper bag to find a note
inside. It read,
“I think you deserve so much more.”
I balled the note up and tossed it across the room. There was no way I could think of being with
anyone right now—besides my heart was with Tony. I thought of him constantly. I thought of all the Sunday mornings and
afternoons we would lie together in bed.
I thought it was enough to keep us close. I thought it would make up for all the time
we allowed to passed us by during our pursuit of more and better. I would lie around in our bed at nights when
he was off at the club. It was all I had
currently. I needed to feel him near and
hold onto what I knew in my heart that we had together. I thought of moving back into our bedroom but
didn’t. I wanted him to fight for
me. I didn’t want it to be that
easy. I didn’t want to be that easy this
time. And he did make small gestures, but
nothing that gave me a sense of security.
Although, I didn’t know if anything could.
When I woke up, I was lying in our bed, and Tony was
holding on to me. It took me a few
moments to understand if it was one of my many daydreams, or if we were really
together again. I felt him kiss me, and
I understood that it was real. I did
want to stay in his arms, but mostly I wanted answers, and Tony didn’t seem to
have any. I eased myself out from his
embrace and headed for the door.
“Why you going? I
miss you.” Tony begged sitting up with
his feet on the floor.
“I can’t. I got a
class in an hour.”
“What time will you be back?”
“I don’t know.
Look I’m not ready to do this. I
made a mistake.” At the bottom of the stairs, I noticed Tony in the kitchen
and saw that he had made breakfast. I
rolled my eyes and thought, “why can’t he
just give me some space”.
When I got to the bottom of the stairs, I could smell
that something had been cooking. I saw
my husband walking towards me with what I presumed was meant to be a peace
“I made you something to go with. I know you’re running late.”
grabbed the bag Tony had packed for me, and left without another word.
On break I sat in my car that had turned into a kind of
safe zone, and prepared to eat the meal Tony had made. Before I could get to it, I was greeted by a
note, which wasn’t a big surprise. My
husband did always like to write me notes however this one was like none I had
received in the past. It didn’t exactly
leave me floating on a cloud.
“I don’t know what else to do.
I’ve said sorry over and over again.
I made a mistake. I’m not perfect,
but I certainly do love you! I wish you
we can just talk about it. I’ll prove to
you that I’m no player. It was one
time. I had too much to drink. My mind was clouded. I miss you so much! Honestly, I thought my dreams had come true
this morning when I saw you lying there.
I wished we could stay there all day long. Please forgive me.” Love, Your Husband
I sat there toying with my omelet. I didn’t have much of an appetite. I thought about his letter and couldn’t
understand the part about him being drunk.
Tony wasn’t a drinker. I think he
may have had a glass of Champagne at our wedding and a few sips of wine that
first night we were together, but I never saw him drink. Was this the sign of a pathological
liar? I didn’t know what to make of
it. I just kept thinking, “Don’t be a fool! This man is playing you!”
Ketly’s Baby Tale
I found myself spending a lot of time by Raina. It was a great way to take my mind away from
my heartbreak. Sometimes it worked, and
other times it didn’t. I thought about Jeff
and what he had said to me about communication, and so I decided to give him a
“Hello?” Jeff had
answered but had not responded.
“Hey babe, just give me a minute.” After a few muffled noises and a few long
seconds he spoke again.
“Hi Ketly. What’s
up? How you doing?”
“You busy?” I
“No. Not for you.”
“You with somebody?”
I asked although I knew.
“You got my full attention, talk to me!” Jeff quickly recovered. I rolled my eyes.
“I was just thinking about you that’s all.”
“How’s my boy?”
“He’s full of smiles.
He’s always so happy?”
“Kiss him for me.”
“Yeah, I will.”
“So writing anything?”
“Off and on... I got no real desire.”
“So when can I come by to share some inspiration with
you?” Jeff asked rather than tease.
“I thought you didn’t want to complicate things?” I retorted.
“I don’t, but I do have needs?”
“Didn’t the person in your bed take care of those?” I wanted Jeff to know that I wasn’t stupid.
“Nobody can take your place.” He replied with no real consideration.
“I’m sorry—it’s just...”
Jeff assured me.
“I’ve got to go…you’re boy is up.” I offered
“Hey, I called you the other night. You didn’t answer.” Jeff surprised me.
“Oh, that must have been the evening I went to the movies
with Kayla.” I surprised myself with the
“So you finally trust someone to babysit Shayne.”
“Yeah, I’m working on it.”
I’ll talk to you soon.” Jeff made
it clear that he was paying attention.
“Later.” I tried
to end the call while I was still solid.
beautiful.” But Jeff found a way to leave
my heart wide open.