I was woken up by the warm sun shining down on my face. When I opened my eyes, I realized that I was at the Hilton downtown. My eyes felt puffy from crying the night before. I looked down at the floor and saw my suitcase. Robert, my husband, had kicked me out. He had found out that I had been in a relationship with my older boss, Derrick, and he could not stand the thought of knowing that I had dated a married man in the past. Fidelity was a huge thing for Robert. When his first wife had an affair with his best friend, he swore that he could never forgive a woman who had cheated. When we dated, he was always conscious of who I looked at and for how long—he was terrified that I would betray him. I closed my eyes in sadness. I could not believe what had happened the night before.
“Are you okay?” said a deep voice to my right.
I turned and faced Derrick. I sighed and nodded. When Robert kicked me out, he had taken all of my credit cards and cash. He said that I needed to find my own way, and that I could no longer depend on him or his money. I called a few of my friends, but no one answered because it was so late. I did not want to involve my family in the situation, so I called the only person who I knew would understand, Derrick. I asked him for a favor—I needed money for a hotel room. I never asked him to come; in fact, I insisted that he didn’t come, but he was worried about me and wanted to help me out. When he arrived at the Hilton, he paid for the room and walked me upstairs. I recounted the entire story and he comforted me. He held me for most of the night, but we slept in our own individual queen beds. That night, once again, we did nothing. He just acted as my friend.
A few of my closest friends knew about my relationship with Derrick while I was married. They always questioned me and wondered what I saw in him. They knew Robert well and knew that I was his queen. They couldn’t understand why I always ran back to Derrick. The only thing I could tell them was that it was about comfort and familiarity—Derrick felt safe and comfortable. He was like your favorite pair of jeans that don’t quite fit the way they used to, but somehow you just can’t throw them away, and every once in a while, you have to take them out and see if they still fit because you remember how amazing you felt in them. I needed Derrick, now more than ever…