did i break his heart?

The same night I broke up with Brendan, I had a really inappropriate dream about him. In it, I was pregnant, but it was Brendan’s and we were in love and having a ton of amazing and there was his penis. I vividly remember touching it and the way it felt in my dream. It was pretty graphic. I woke up feeling super guilty. I always have the most inappropriate dreams about people I should not be dreaming about (usually Hunter – more on him later).

The next day, we had a meeting where Mike and Brendan were presenting and I just got to sit there taking notes, thank God. Brendan was already in the filled room when I arrived so he didn’t come over to say hi or even make eye contact with me. I kind of felt bad because he seemed kind of sad during the whole thing and kept looking down at the floor. Did I break his heart? Or was I thinking too highly of my influence? He didn’t come over and talk to me after the meeting and he didn’t stop by to say goodbye before he left.

Okay. This was what I asked for. I spent the day actually working, ordered fried chicken for lunch and left early so I could stop and pick up dinner for my man. The following day though, Brendan texted me. We hadn’t talked at all since I dumped him, but I’d been waiting for him to reach out.

“I’ve been thinking and everything you said is absolutely correct. We probably shouldn’t hang out anymore. We still have work together, but I’ll try to transfer as much of it to Thomas as I can. I’m sorry if I made things weird between us. I didn’t realize it until you mentioned it,” he said.

Wait. No. I backtracked.

“I don’t think we have to stop hanging out completely – just not as much. Like you said, we still have to work together and it isn’t fair to make Thomas do everything just to avoid me. Can we have lunch together tomorrow?”

“Okay,” Brendan said.

All of the drama with Brendan made me extra horny so when Brady got home from work, I made him sit down on the couch so I could undress him.

“Ohh, okayyyy,” he mumbled, liking where was going.

I rode him for a little while before he (gently – I’m carrying a child) flipped me onto my tummy and we finished in that position. I’m not really showing that much, I kind of just look how I look after I’ve eaten a whole Chipotle burrito. Which I do frequently so it makes sense.

Afterwards, Brady got dressed again and sat back on the couch. “I was doing some thinking and I think we should get married.”

“Excuse me?” I said back, halting my search for my bra.

“It’s the smartest thing to do given our situation. My health insurance is very good and I think you should be on it to have the baby and I think the baby should be on as well. For tax purposes, it makes more sense for us to be able to file together. And…my parents will take the news a lot better if we are married,” he explained, like it was a business deal.

“I see what you mean, but I’m not getting married for your parents’ benefit. And never once did you say, ‘because I want to marry you,’ and really, that should be the only reason – not because of the government.” I gave up looking for my bra and threw my top back on. No ring, no romance. Really, it was just a suggestion and I didn’t like that.

Brady nodded. “You’re right.” And then he walked off and didn’t mention it again.

For some reason, I was super excited for my lunch with Brendan the next day. I guess I kind of missed him as I was used to seeing him everyday. And after Brady’s perfunctory proposal, I needed a pick me up.

At 12:30, Mike and Brendan walked past my open office door and I watched Brendan laugh lightly at something Mike said. My heart melted into a puddle. Only he could get along and joke with Mike like that.

“Hey,” Brendan said, joining me in my office. He wore slacks and a button down tucked in, with two buttons opened at the top.

“Hiiii,” I said, sweetly. “I’m almost ready.”

I quickly sent an email back to Connie, who was hassling me again, while Brendan pulled out his phone. Normally he would have been chatting my ear off, but things were still off.

Once I was ready, we headed down in the elevator and walked the two blocks to a café with a huge menu because I was craving everything. Brendan told me about work, complaining about Thomas’ lack of focus and some of the projects he was wrapping up. We quickly fell back into our normal rhythm – joking, rolling our eyes about people we don’t like, ordering a bunch of stuff all together so we could share. This was more like it.

“Lydia [the girl I hate, Connie’s boss] did something similar yesterday. She sent an email saying that my team was late on delivering something when it had already been communicating that the deadline had been changed. She copied Mike and you and literally everyone in your company,” Brendan explained.

“Oh, I saw that! And then when you corrected her, she said, ‘This conversation is no longer productive so I’m removing myself from the chain,” I said. “What a bitch!”

“Removing herself from the chain because she was wrong,” he said laughing. “Mike and I just made fun of her.”

“Those two are the worst. Literally so miserable. I see where Connie gets it.”

After what felt like a back-to-normal lunch and Brendan was waiting for the waitress to bring his card back, I leaned over and grabbed his wrist, the one he always wore a thin gold link bracelet on.

“This was so fun. Should we do it again tomorrow?” I asked as casually as possible, batting my eyelashes at him.

Brendan pulled his arm away slowly and then with more conviction. “Reese, what the fuck?”

I was startled, and withdrew my hand.

“You said you didn’t want to hang out anymore. Why did you say that if you didn’t mean it?” he demanded.

“I said we shouldn’t hang out as much. We can still hang out as friends though. As long as we both know we are just friends,” I clarified.

“Do we both know that? I kinda feel like you’re sending me mixed signals here. One minute you’re all over me and the next you’re saying you love your boyfriend.”

My heart sped up and I felt like I might vomit. Did he actually think I was “all over” him? I thought about how I’d so comfortably grabbed his wrist and other times when I’d link my arm with his while walking or reach over and help myself to his plate or grab his shoulders/neck to emphasize a point.

“And the next minute you’re suddenly married with a wife you don’t ever talk about. Funny how you don’t mention being married until I bring up my boyfriend.”

Brendan stood up, pulling out his wallet to return his credit card. “I’m gonna head back to work.”

I haven’t seen or heard from Brendan since. A few days later, Kristina and I walked to get smoothies for lunch.

“What happened with Brendan? Thomas said he said you’re driving him crazy,” she said on our walk over.

“He’s driving me crazy!” I exclaimed, but refused to tell Kristina what happened.

Hunter will be visiting next month – for two weeks. And he’s staying with us.

“Are you sure he should stay with us? Two weeks is a long time. I’m sure a hotel isn’t out of his budget,” I said when Brady told me.

“I’m not going to make my brother stay in a hotel, Reese. And that’s rude,” Brady replied.

We don’t even have a guest bedroom for the guy to sleep in so he will just be…there. So I have that to look forward to.

Lastly, I caught Brady looking for places to buy. I didn’t get a good look, but what I saw was a open floor plan kitchen and living area, big windows and “$1,099,999” at the top. I don’t know who can afford that, but I haven’t gotten the courage to ask him about it since I’m trying not to be a snooping girlfriend anymore.

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i had to break up with him.

My mother decided to visit for Memorial Day. Normally I would have been excited to spend the weekend drinking, but since that wasn’t an option I guess seeing my mom was good too.

Between Mike and Connie, I was ready to retire from my job. Mike didn’t talk to me for days after the samples mishap. He normally doesn’t talk to me anyway, but this was painful. And Connie continued sending passive aggressive emails telling me to update spreadsheets and that my numbers were wrong while refusing to make eye contact with me in the halls of the office.

Brendan stopped by the office to pick me up for our “working lunch” and we ran into Mike on our way out.

“Brendan,” he said, shaking his hand. “Thank you for setting up the reservation. We look forward to seeing you on Saturday.”

“What was that about?” I asked Brendan in the elevator.

“Mike and I will both be up north this weekend. We are going to meet up for dinner,” he explained.

I didn’t say anything. I had absolutely not right to, but I felt left out. Why would those two be hanging out? I thought Brendan was on my team. And I was frustrated that Mike was going out of his way not to acknowledge me – in front of Brendan!

We spent all of lunch talking shop and about his parents dog. On the way back, Brendan said, “Can we do this again tomorrow?”

How did he have time for another hour and a half working lunch the following day? I don’t know and didn’t ask. We did the exact same thing the following day – only I chose the restaurant. I dragged him all the way to the other side of Central Park because I wanted crepes.

After the weekend with my mom, Brady and I were in a really good place. She’s a therapist and seemed to talk some sense into both of us (at least Brady because I like to think I was never the problem). We all had dinner on the first night she arrived and my mom said, “Brady, I’m dying to know how you’re feeling about everything.”

And instead of saying “I don’t think we are ready” or anything like that, he said, “I’m nervous, but I am extremely excited.”

My mom, the therapist, asked, “What are you nervous about?”

“I mean, everything,” he laughed. “When I imagined becoming a parent, I pictured things a little different.”

“Like?”

“I didn’t think I’d be renting an apartment in a city I don’t want to be in, I thought we’d be married, and that we’d have more money saved up. Among a lot of other things…” Brady glanced at me timidly.

My mom nodded. “Of course. Those things would be nice, wouldn’t they? But you both have wonderful jobs here, don’t you think it’s great that you are here, for now? If you did have more money saved up, what would you do with it? If you needed anything at all, you know you have family who will do anything and everything to help. And lastly Brady – I know you know this – there is still time to get married.”

“Mom!” I said, rolling my eyes.

“I just know that y’all are completely capable. Don’t forget – your father and I were young and not as successful when we had you. I hadn’t even finished all of my schooling!” she went on.

“I know.”

On her last night in town, we went out to dinner – just the two of us.

“So I talked to Brady,” she said over ravioli, meatballs, mussels, and lots of bread. “It must drive you nuts to not know what he’s thinking.”

“It does!” I exclaimed. “But I’m used to it by now. What did he say?”

“He doesn’t know when he is going to tell his parents you are pregnant. I asked him what he was waiting for and he said, ‘a plan.’ I can’t imagine if you didn’t feel like you could reach out to us for support.”

“Yeah, well. They’re probably going to disown him so I can understand why he’s putting it off,” I explained.

“But why? He’s a grown man.”

I agreed.

She told me about the other things they talked about like the fact that Brady was thinking of taking on an assignment that would take him out of the country for a month, but my pregnancy stopped it. Wish he would talk to me about things like that!

“Y’all need to talk more. I know he isn’t very open, but it sounds like you aren’t either. I told him the same thing.”

And like I said, ever since my mom left, things have been exponentially better. So much so that I think Brady is actually getting excited. He checks on me fourteen times a day and sends articles and reminds me to eat (as if I need a reminder) and drink water. He even took off work to come to the doctor with me again. And now that the weather’s getting nicer, he comes home before it gets dark so we can go on a walk with Tucker.

The following weekend, Lola wanted to get brunch and I agreed. I’d have to think of an excuse for why I wasn’t drinking. We went to a reformer class and then walked to a cute French place to eat.

“We will share the chocolate chip pancakes and two of the bottomless mimosas please,” Lola told the server.

“Oh no, that’s okay. I’m not drinking,” I said quickly.

“Why?” she scoffed.

“I’m not in the mood for that.”

“Do you want a Bloody then?”

I shook my head and Lola gave me a weird look. Once her carafe arrived she said, “I want to know why you’re not drinking.”

“I just don’t want to,” I said back.

She slid her flute toward me. “Just have a sip. It’ll get you in the mood.”

“I’m okay.”

“Why won’t you just take a sip? Like what’s wrong with you?” she demanded, in a teasing voice.

“Because I’m pregnant,” I said. If she wanted the truth, I’d give it to her.

“I knew it!” she exclaimed. “Why couldn’t you just tell me that? I’m not an idiot.”

“I was going to do a grand announcement, but you ruined it.”

Lola took it better than I thought. I think she felt bad for forcing me to tell her, but made it clear she was not happy about losing a drinking partner. We spent the rest of brunch talking about sustainable baby clothing.

With all of our “working lunch” dates and the fact that Brady and I were doing so well, I felt like I needed to break up with Brendan. We were spending way too much time together – we’d have lunch (his treat) almost daily, where we’d talk about business, but also our weekend plans, and what we were going to make for dinner, and how we wanted to go to Spain and Palm Springs and French Polynesia, and how I needed a new wardrobe (every time I showed Brendan things I’d put in my Revolve.com cart, he’d say, “That would look great on you! I really like it.” Little did he know, I couldn’t buy any of it because it was not baby bump appropriate), and if this were another life, what would we be doing? (Living in Paris as an artist, obviously).

He brought me pastries from his favorite bakery sometimes because he knew I’d like them and got way too excited watching me have a mouth orgasm every time I bit into one. Brendan also let me borrow books and an immersion blender. It’s like he loved me “needing” him. Kristina was loving our blossoming relationship.

I’d made up my mind that I was going to break things off (the guilt was getting to me) and Brendan stopped by the office one afternoon. Oh, perfect, I thought, I’ll just do it now before he tries to invite me to lunch the next day.

“Hey! I wanted to say hi before heading home. How are you?” he said, popping his head in my office.

“Good, thanks! I’m actually headed out too. Wanna walk down together?” I said back.

I gathered my things and we took the elevator down to the lobby together while making small talk. He told me he was grilling out for dinner and I think I moaned out loud.

“You know, you’re welcome over if you want,” Brendan laughed.

Ugh.

“Can we talk for a sec?” I asked. We were outside of the building now and with the millions of pedestrians on the sidewalk, it was the worst place to talk.

“Yeah, of course,” he said back.

“We should probably stop hanging out so much,” I said as we walked. “I enjoy going to lunch with you and all of our conversations, but it doesn’t feel platonic anymore. I want to be friends with you, of course, but we can’t go on lunch dates and you can’t invite me on trips with you anymore. I love my boyfriend…and I’m pregnant.”

I glanced at the side of Brendan’s face to gauge his reaction and he briefly looked like he had been punched in the gut. He recovered quickly.

“It is platonic,” he said, glancing back at me quickly. “I’m married, Reese. We are nothing more than friends. I’m sorry if I gave you a different idea or made you uncomfortable, but…..yeah. I’m not interested in being anything other than friends.”

“Okay,” I said, coolly, not sure how to react. I couldn’t remember a time when he said “I’m married” so explicitly, but all right. “Glad we’re on the same page.”

“Yeah, of course.” Brendan stopped walking and gestured the opposite way, “I’m headed back this way though. I’ll see you tomorrow?”

“Sure, see you tomorrow,” I said.

He took off the other way, not even congratulating me on being pregnant.

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