“I am glad to know you’re doing okay. So nice of you to call this old woman.” Diana says over the phone.
“You’re still family. That won’t change, Diana.” I say.
After all these years, Diana and I managed to keep in touch. Although Anthony and I never married, his mother and I have stayed in touch from Africa to San Diego. Once in a while, we call each other when we feel alone. She has been my support system for almost a decade.
“How is Ian?” she asks.
I look over to see where Ian is, squinting my eyes against the San Diego sun. I spot him on the beach, chasing Kenny near the water.
“He’s great. He’s happy to be in San Diego. He says he can’t wait to see you soon.”
“You’re bringing the kids, right?” Diana asks.
For a moment, I take in the scenery. I did not think I could fall in love again after losing Anthony. Ten years ago, I left San Diego for Africa to find myself again, leaving Ian and Kenny in my apartment. When I returned a year later, Ian told me that he wants to go to Africa with me when I go back. I managed to get the organization I work for to hire him as an assistant to me. Ian, Kenny and I stayed in a house in Johannesburg. I saw a lot of Anthony’s qualities in Ian, and grew to love Kenny as a son. Five years ago, I married Ian, and we became a family.
I always ask myself if this is what Anthony would want. I had some doubt, but I know that he would want me to be happy.
“Sorry. Yes! I am bringing them over. You can take them all forever.” I say jokingly. Diana laughs.
“Don’t do that Sam. You know I’ll take those kids in a heartbeat. Anthony’s room is empty. I never had grandkids. I can pile them in there and teach them how to play the flute for an entire summer.” She jokes back.
It’s funny how much Anthony is still affecting my life, even after his death. There was a moment when I felt that falling in love with Ian was wrong. We had moments when we could have broken up, but somehow, something kept us together.
I always think of it as Anthony’s funny way of watching over us.
Ian and Kenny are now running towards me. My other kid is yanking my hair. Ian pries his fingers off my hair, then kisses me on the cheek.
“Is that Uncle Ryan?” Kenny asks.
“No, it’s Grandma D.”
“Can the other one speak now?” Diana asks.
Without a thought, a small hand grabs my phone and places it on his ear. He sits on Ian’s lap while Kenny sits on the other, waiting his turn to speak to Diana. Ian is smiling at me warmly.
The clouds part from the sky, revealing the sun, which shines down on us, forcing us to squint.
“And who might this little boy be?” Diana asks.
My little man speaks softly to the phone.
“This is Tony, who are you?”