And so we have a teenager. An awkward teenager, a cuckoo in our nest.
Bella had braces fitted to her teeth, we were told this would happen when she was two years old, teeth were missing, and would never grow. Was something lacking in her genes? We travelled back and forth to the city. A city she now lives. I prefer she lives there, I prefer not to bump into her down my street, see her face, see that she has been drinking again.
As a child, Bella played the piano, went to girl guides, at the age of eight she was awarded swimming badges: bronze, silver, and gold. She was fearless of water, sea, or pool, never considered what lurked underneath.
We moved to a bigger house, brand-new and still partly on a building site. With her cousins and sister, she would dig for treasure in the excavation piles. From her finds, she collected empty antique bottles. We did not know that empty bottles would come a plenty.
Her early teens were spent in our company, we continued to do the things we loved. Was she a moody teenager? No more or less than any other. She liked a joke, and bought an attachment for an exhaust, then popped it in her uncles’ new car. He drove off to a tremendous fanfare, stopped the car, and cursed the need to go to the garage.
Bella amused us all with her take on life, we didn’t know of the heartache to come.