I had remembered the reason for my pain as much as I wanted to wake myself up out of my nightmare or turn back the hands of time; this was it-reality, my reality. A reality that I never wanted to be mine, or for that matter, anyone else’s, but through no control of my own here I was facing my pain head on whether I wanted to or not. The thought of food made me nauseous so I sat there in the quietness of my quaint little one bedroom condo wondering what do I do now? Who do I call now? And if I actually had someone to call what would I say? “Hey, this is Renee and I am sitting here with my heart shattering into pieces one by one, if you don’t mind could you stop by here before or after work and pick these shattered pieces of my heart off of the floor and put them back together for me? Thanks, I appreciate it”. If only it were that easy. What really hurt the most in this situation is that I knew our breakup was my fault that was another pain that I didn’t want to focus on. I knew what I had done but once again, I thought love could conquer all and it can but I didn’t learn that lesson until later on down the line. Little did I know that I was about to learn a lot of lessons and my teacher was the one entity that I thought would never listen to me, let alone help me. I sat there doing nothing saying nothing. I probably should have been talking to God, seeing how I had recently joined church prior to our breakup. I knew that I had to begin my Christian walk somewhere and this situation would have been a great start but not today, today I was mad at God for not keeping Jay and I together and for making me feel this pain. I was going to church and had joined church…I mean dang! What else was I supposed to be doing? Well, today I didn’t care, all I wanted to do was reminisce and cry and that’s what I did. I sat there in my bedroom just looking around remembering happier times in here. Times when Jay and I would make popcorn and watch movies all night well into the early hours of the morning. I remembered when I asked Jay if he would help me paint this room. “Yeah, you know I will do anything for you girl! You know I love you, now come here and give me my suga girl! By the way, what color are we painting it?” I smiled and looked at him like you really want to know, but he already knew by the look on my face. “Aw man! We are painting this room purple aren’t we?” “Yep! With a touch of light silver on the trim” I said laughing because it tickled me that he knew me so well. “Okay, I ‘m cool with that just as long as we don’t have to listen to Prince during the entire project, we can listen to a few songs but not all day. I can’t take him all day”. “Okay, that’s a deal. But I don’t want to listen to your slow jams all day either, bring something with a beat. No vulgar rap I can’t take that, everything else is cool. We got a deal” Jay agreed and we sealed it with a kiss, hug and lovemaking. With us every occasion was a reason to make love. That was a great memory for me, we just clicked like that but we didn’t always click and as I sat there I laughed to myself as I thought about us in the beginning. In the beginning I was dating Bernard, or Doofus, as I liked to call him because he was the cheapest brotha on the planet. Just cheap and slow, he was also Jay’s friend. I was shopping for groceries for Carolyn,yeah we go all the way back to high school, at one of our local markets when Doofus approached me. He seemed real nice at the time, I had seen him there before, he worked there, he would always stare at me and give me a partial smile I never thought anything about it until he approached me one day and introduced himself and asked for my number. He seemed harmless so after a few minutes of small talk we exchanged numbers. Doofus and I would over the phone and he would stop by my house every now and then but he never came alone, Jay was always with him. I never got that they seemed as if they were joined at the hip or something. The first time Jay came over with Doofus I was not impressed at all because Doofus and I had plans or at least we were suppose to, I didn’t realize that it was going to be a threesome. “Renee, this is my boy Jay, Jay, this is my girl Renee”. Doofus said, standing there grinning from ear to ear looking like the Cheshire Cat from the book Alice In Wonderland grinning as if he had done something spectacular by introducing us. “Hey” I said rather nonchalantly like my stuff didn’t stink but his did. “Hey” replied in the same like manner as if to say “Check mate, I have checked you and it has been confirmed that your stuff does stink, so you may now come down off your high horse and into the real world”. “Y’all, ready to go? Doofus asked. I looked at him and said “No, I am not! Why does your boy have to come? I thought this was our day to hang out!” “Man! As much as I don’t care for your stuck up, thinks- she’s- all- that -and –not girl, she has a point. I thought we were going downtown to play some video games and you got me over here meeting your girl, I’ve been here all of five minutes and she is trippin!” Who did this brother think he was? Jay may have been his boy but he certainly wasn’t mine. “Trppin! Stuck up! I got your trippin and stuck up!” Doofus stood in between us with both his hands up in the air. Laughing and smiling as he was trying to calm us both down. “Nay, come on calm that mess down”. “Bernard, you see somebody here named Nay you give her twenty dollars, my name is Renee!” “See man! She trippin, like I said…stuck up!” Jay just had to open up his big tail, ashy soup cooler lips. Me, not one to back down had to reply. “Like I said I got your trippin and stuck up!” Doofus, now almost in tears from laughing finally said “Look Nay, I mean Renee, I was wrong but let me make it up to you. I will go hang out with Jay today and you and me can hang out tonight aight?” I stood there for a quick minute looking at him and then over his shoulder at Jay, who had a smirk on his face that I just wanted to smack off. I threw up my hand and said “Whatever Bernard, I’ll be ready at seven”. We all agreed on our new plans and they left. I started getting ready around five thirty, it takes a sista a little longer to get it together, I took a long bath, lotioned down, ironed my clothes, had a little snack and styled my hair, which was a task all by itself. I was ready and waiting at ten minutes after seven. “Where you guys going tonight?” Carolyn asked. I had always called my mother by her first name since I was old enough to talk. My grandmother raised me but right before my Senior year in high school I decided that I wanted to live with Carolyn, a person I didn’t really know as a person or a mother, but wanted to know on both levels. “I don’t really know but I am assuming to a movie and then we will probably go get something to eat”. “That sounds cool, y’all just be careful ok?” “We will if he ever shows up”. That was the end of our chitchat but we were always like that, Carolyn and I didn’t know how to relate to one another but I always hoped that one day we would. I waited and waited and waited, Doofus finally showed up at nine o’clock and believe it or not I didn’t say anything. I was giving him the benefit of the doubt because he apologized and said his moms had him running every since him and Jay had gotten back from hanging out. No biggie, we got in his car and was headed for a destination that only he knew. So I just sat back and chilled. We finally pulled up in a parking lot and stopped and when I looked up I swear I could have screamed! We were at Showbiz Pizza, that restaurant that is now Chuckee Cheese. Was he freakin kidding me! Showbiz! What in the world were we doing here? Was my thought. Just as soon as I asked that question in my head I got my answer. Doofus said that we were going to hang out here for a while and play a few video games. What did he just say? My thoughts were coming quick, my mouth just wasn’t saying anything. Hang out here! I didn’t play video games nor was I dressed to play video games. I was wearing a black and white blouse with a black denim skirt, white socks and black casual shoes with a matching black purse. I was cute! Too cute for a kiddy pizzeria and video games place. Again, I said nothing I decided to go along, a few rounds of air hockey wasn’t going to kill me. So we had been there for about an hour, I was not enjoying myself at all I never got to play air hockey because Doofus was too busy going from machine to machine to notice that we were suppose to be there together. So I had gotten thirsty I asked Bernard would he buy me a coke and his reply to me was “Man! You gonna break a brother!” What! What did he just say to me? That was it! I had had enough! “Break you! First of all, you were two hours late picking me up! And then we come to this tired tail place, where for the past hour, I have watched you put quarter after quarter into these machines, where by the way, did you forget we, me and you, are suppose to be hanging together? and now I ask you for a dollar drink and I’m breaking you! Negro, please! take me home with your cheap tired self! After I bought my own coke we were on our way back home. I was furious and he knew not to say a word. I asked him to stop at McDonald’s so that I could get something, I was starving considering I hadn’t eaten in the past four hour and that Negro had the nerve to tell me we couldn’t stop there because his funds were low. I was done! I had been seasoned, laid out to marinate, baked, the timer had gone off and now I was completely done! I laughed at the memory of that whole scene. After that night Doofus and I would casually talk to one another from time to time. However, I kept running into Jay more and more after that night and I guess we got tired of always having snide remarks to say to one another that we just decided to just be cordial. Cordial soon turned into kind and kind turned into friendship after he broke the boys club honor code…you know, telling your friends girl or in this case, ex-girl what a dog your friend really is. We had been joined at the hip and mind since that day.