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CHAPTER 2: Winding Down

By Natasha Renee


A couple of weeks passed since I saw or spoke to my Ex. It was hard for me to accept that it was finally over. No one prepares you for real-life relationships. Every relationship doesn’t have that fairy tale ending. Some come with cheating, affairs, and deception.


I had been off and on with this man for several years, I didn’t know how to date, or how to be in a healthy relationship. He was the only man I had ever loved. Change is never easy. I tried so hard to hold on to someone I knew I had to let go of. It was time to finally end this chapter in my life and begin a new one.


“Today is a new day to start all over”


I was up before my first alarm went off. I decided that I needed a day to myself. The boys were with my mother for the week. I didn’t have any clients. I needed to refocus and get back on track. I had lost touch with the one person who mattered the most.


Me.


First thing on my to-do list

-Meet with my best friend Chanelle for coffee.


Chanelle has been my best friend since high school. We both were busy and successful in our careers. Despite our busy schedules, we always made time to chit-chat. Especially when it came to men.


I couldn’t wait to hear what she had to say when I told her it’s finally over.


I told Chanelle to meet me at a small café that was right across the street from my office. She had texted me letting me know she was waiting outside. I parked my car and began walking up to the café. As I turned the corner I could see Chanelle standing outside the building. You couldn’t miss her. She was 5’11, slim, and when you saw her you couldn’t take your eyes off of her. Chanelle rocked a Caesar haircut and her beautiful dark brown skin was flawless.


As I walked up closer to Chanelle I could tell by the way she was standing that she was upset. She lifted her sunglasses and gave me the evil eye.


“GIRL! Why you got me out here this early and you know parking is crazy expensive in the city. You are too bougie for me all this money you pay for your office. Parking needs to be free.”


I laughed. Not from the parking comment, but anytime Chanelle begins a sentence with “Girl” I knew I was in trouble.


“It’s not funny. Now you know I don’t like coffee you should have called me after five o'clock and we could have hit up a bar during happy hour in Old City. This better be…”


Before Chanelle could finish her sentence, she looked at me. She could see the hurt in my eyes. I had to blink to keep from crying. I didn’t have to say what happened she already knew what happened. She hugged me and we walked in and placed our order. I ordered a small dark roast coffee and Chanelle had an ice caramel cappuccino. The barista handed us our drink and we sat outside on the patio and talked.


Chanelle was my voice of reason. No matter what I didn’t want to hear, she always kept it real.

Especially when it came to my Ex. She has always made it known that she didn’t like our relationship. I would never listen when she told me to just let it go and move on.


When I was finished talking, she grabbed my hand; looked me in my eyes and said…


“Girl, we are moving on and starting all over. It’s his loss and there are plenty of men that would love to have you. And speaking of men… I found a new dating site that I know you would like.”


“I don’t know Chanelle.”


“Trust me. Would I ever steer you wrong?”


“No.”


“Exactly, so when you get home promise me that you will at least try it.”


“Okay, I’ll try.”


* * *


Several hours passed since Chanelle and I met up this morning for coffee. I took her advice and decided to check out this online dating thing. I grabbed my laptop, went to the site, and started filling out my profile.


I started to feel anxious. All of this was too much. I needed a break. No, I needed a drink. I didn’t have any wine so I had to go out and grab some from the store. It was late so I put on some sweats, grabbed my keys, and rushed to the store before they closed.



I rushed into the store, grabbed my wine, and got in line. The man in front of me smiled.


“Hey, beautiful you can go ahead of me.”


“Are you sure?”


I smiled. I liked what I saw.


“Yea, go ahead”


He smiled back.


“Thank you”


“You’re welcome, by the way, I’m Mike.”


“Nice to meet you, Mike.”


I told him my name and we proceeded to walk out of the store.


While he was walking me to my car, I’m singing in my head “Ohhhh Baby, gotta get you home with me tonight”


Before I got in my car, he stopped me and asked,


“So, what are you doing tonight?”


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