Tough Love and More Pie

It’s Called a Breakup Because It’s Broken. This is a book, and you’re thinking I should read it. There are a lot of good points in that book.

I’m not resolving to do anything, but I am thinking about some things. Before we get in too deep, we should buy ourselves a little pie. Maybe two.


Now let’s drive ourselves home, put our pajamas on much too early, and make another quick stop in the kitchen for some forks. Let’s bypass the pie servers and the plates, just this once. We’re all friends here. Because you’re a friend, you’re going to be tempted to nod and inject hope in the all of the right places. Can you not do that, just for today? I think I might need you to not do that. I think I might also need you to tell me that I need to invest in a new pair of pajamas. You know, to rotate in at least.

So. Please pass the pie. My getting-over-a-breakup process does not seem to involve a bar or an outfit my mother would be horrified to see me in. Or a last name I never filed away, or a tab I’m not quite sure ever got paid. You don’t need to worry about those things. It does seem to involve a completely wacky timeline that doesn’t make sense to anyone — least of all me.

It involves waking up at 3am with so many words in my head that I cannot possibly, possibly go back to sleep. Not without writing them all down before I lose them. Not without reading them in the morning and slowly drawing a line through the whole lot. This is sort of what writing a book is like, I’ve heard. What a painful process.

My version of moving on involves doing a lot of standing still in the Le Creuset section. (Apparently I enjoy looking at things I can’t have.)


It involves replaying a lot of moments that hung in midair and hurt. Like that time that he told me, in no uncertain terms, that there wasn’t a void in his life. Nothing to fill with chocolate chips. Alone on that score.


Like that time he said please just let me live my life for now. There were a few lines after that, but that’s really all that I remember. Okay! Letting you live! Checking your Facebook way too often, but letting you live!

I have Real Talked myself about him so many times. Moving on — actually moving on — would not include half-hoping a well intentioned friend would send my blog his way. Not hoping that he might see flashes of us in my stories. Not hoping that he might fall a little bit back in love with me, after all this time. Not hoping that he might want to spend an afternoon getting to know the person I’m becoming.


I need you to give me a little push in the right direction. I need you to tell me that moving on is a good choice. Tough love: It’s the only choice. If he ever does come back, it will have to be on his terms. He will probably need to fall in love with someone else first — maybe even a whole bunch of somebody elses. Those relationships will all need to die a natural death and he will need to realize it’s me that he’s been missing. He will need to swallow his pride and decide to call me up. More tough love: There is an enormous chance that this will never, ever happen.

Because you’re a friend, you are wisely not going to comment on the fact that I just wished him a lifetime of doomed relationships. That wasn’t very nice.

You’re going to tell me that if dredging up old memories makes me better able to let them go, then I should continue to do that. By all means. But if it’s making me love him — or an idealized version of him — a little more, I should be careful. Really careful.

You’re going to tell me that I’m smart to stay single while I’m still hurting. That it’s okay to miss him. That we all have someone who makes us feel a crazy lady in not very cute pajamas. That all of this misery will make me a more compassionate human being. And that one day I will know how to make a killer pie crust.


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