“How are you? Really?” my friend and good coworker Maria asks.

We are both vaccinated now so now we can resume our coffee breaks in my car. Too bad I’m not wearing my mask, it’s hard to lie.

“I am so sad” I whisper.

She nods.

“I am really sad”.

She nods again.

“What happened?” she whispers.

“Why are you whispering? No one else is here!” I say laughing.

“Sorry! You were whispering so I thought I should too!”

I nod.

“So… what happened?” she now asks in a normal tone.

I look down. I folded my hands. “I don’t know” I say.

“Whatever it is trust God” she says as she has been saying the last two years when it came to my family, relationships, and job.

“But why would God keep throwing Prince Player into my life only for him to leave every time he does? Hmm? This is like…almost a decade now!”

She sips her coffee, “Maybe he’s meant to stay. Eventually…”

“I don’t know, I told him it was my last hurrah with him” I say.

She raises an eyebrow. “Did ya really mean that?”

I suck in my cheeks. “No…”

“Then why’d you say it?”

“Because he does this every time. He comes in, swoops me up, loves me harder than before- only to leave me the next week” I say.

“It sounds like each time he does come back, he is better though right?”

“Yea… but I don’t know if he’s coming back this time. He said he doesn’t want to communicate with me anymore” I say.

Maria laughs. “Shaz. You and I know that’s a lie. He just feels bad because deep down he knows he really does love you, but something is preventing him from going through with it”.

I nod. “Yea I know”.

“Give him some time. If it’s meant to be he’ll come back. If not, there will be better Shaz. I promise!”

I stay silent.

Maria holds my arm, “See I’d normally tell you to go find someone else after he’s dragged your heart like this. But it’s written all over your face and heart how you feel about this one”.

I nod.

“What do you love about him so much Shaz? You didn’t really tell me much about that like you did with your ex” Maria says.

I look up. “Well for starters, he’s really cute. Just like me. He admitted our babies would be super good looking!”

Maria nearly spits out her coffee. She laughs. “Oh my god Shaz. What else?”

I laugh too. “Ok ok I’m kidding! Well he is, but beyond that… We just. Go well together. It’s like, I can tell what he’s thinking when I’m in his presence. Even when we are far I can too. And he can read me pretty well too. He always listens to me and takes my side on everything. Like I don’t know anyone who is more “Team Shaz” than he is. In college whenever I was nervous about a class or something, he’d always encourage me and tell me I’d do great. And he’d be the first to congratulate me. And every time I look at him, I don’t see 26 year old Prince Player- I see 17 year old Prince Player. Like I remember the first time I saw him. And our first time alone together. He was walking me home on one of those crisp fall Chicago days. I do not have an ex in the world I have gone back to this many times. “Heart” I did a few times but not as much as this. My last one I went back to just once and that was enough. And this one. Oh my god he’s just a part of me. And our weekend together three months ago, just reiterated all of this. I will never understand why he left”.

Maria looks at me sad, and hold my arm again.

I rest my head on the steering wheel.

“Maria. Fuck these memories seriously”.

to be continued in Memories (Part 2)

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