How to Get Over Your Ex in Ninety Days(6)

By: Jennifer Peel




I hate your guts!

Presley



That was probably enough journal writing for now.

This was my final day of summer vacation. Tomorrow, in-service began, and in eight days school started. I didn’t know how I could face it. How could I face him?

My parents were no help, they said I had made a commitment and I had to follow through. As much as they liked Jackson, they had warned me about the complications dating a coworker could cause. Now I was reaping the consequences.

I threw off my covers; I couldn’t waste another day in bed. I was a Benson, my dad reminded me. But I wanted to be a Montgomery. No, no. I was getting him out of my head. I had survived one day. Well, sort of. I looked around at all the used tissues and the remnants of the two dozen chocolate-covered strawberries I ate last night. It was somewhat healthy. Dark chocolate was practically medicinal and strawberries were a good source of nutrients. So I had a stomachache. It went well with the headache, not to mention the ache in the core of my chest.

Last day of freedom. What do you want to do? I texted Capri.

Sorry PB, David took the day off so he could take me to the new exhibit at the Huntsville Art Museum. Do you want to come?

I didn’t need to hear her voice. I knew she was begging me to say no. She wanted to spend the day with her husband. I couldn’t blame her. But in my head, I wished them and their cute love-filled marriage to fiery depths.

Have fun. I’ll pick you up for the retreat at 8:00 tomorrow morning.

Someone had the bright idea that our training should be more like a retreat. I thought it was brilliant until a couple of days ago. I was looking forward to sneaking off with you-know-who in the woods, maybe taking a dip in the lake under the dark of night.

I hated him.

Showering seemed like a good first step on the ninety-day road to recovery, and probably changing out of my pajamas. It was on days like today that I wished I had a bathtub to soak in. My little apartment only consisted of one tiny bathroom with a shower barely big enough for me. Perks of being a teacher, I guess.

I sat cross-legged on my made bed with my wet hair wrapped up in a towel, trying to decide what to do with my day, my life. You don’t know how tempted I was to break my contract despite the ramifications, but I looked around at my tiny apartment that was completely open except the bathroom, and a sense of pride filled me. I was on my own. Maybe I didn’t have much now, but it was mine. I had worked hard to get here. Was I really going to let a man take that away from me? A man who so carelessly dumped me? A man I loved with all that I was and am.

I lay back on my bed and begged myself not to cry. I could do this. What choice did I have?





Day Three

Thursday, July 29



Dear Mr. Bingley,

Today, I must face him. Remember when you left Jane? You didn’t even bother to tell her yourself. You had your sister do it—by letter, I might add. It was cowardly. You should have at least asked her if Mr. Darcy was right. She could have told you then how much she admired you. Jackson is a coward, too. He’s afraid of his father and of failing. But you see, he could have just come out and said it. Then I could have told him we would work it out together, because together is better than apart. But he called me a distraction and, worse, he knew how I felt about him. I’m no Jane. There was no question how I felt about him. Now— at all costs—I have to hide my feelings, even the hateful ones. Jane was so lucky that she never had to work for you. I’m determined, though, to get over him. Eighty-seven days from now I’ll be saying, Jackson who?



Presley



I closed the journal and placed it in my overnight bag. Running home to Colorado was going through my mind. No. I could do this. I was three percent of the way there. Oh gosh, that was depressing. I headed to Capri’s before I changed my mind.

Capri was kissing David on their porch when I arrived. That was uncalled for. I honked the horn. They broke apart. I could imagine the suction sound after that lip-lock. To add insult to injury, David pulled her back for one more kiss. It was going to be one night away, people. I was jealous. A few days ago I would have been oohing and ahhing at the scene, because someone who I won’t mention would have treated me the same way if we had to spend almost two days apart.

Capri finally made her way to me. She looked adorable in overalls. Her whole aura screamed she was in love.

I looked down at my outfit. I wore a short, capped sleeve summer dress. The less material the better. Alabama’s summers killed me. It was like living in a steamy shower all day long. This Colorado girl was still trying to adjust, if that was possible.

Capri tossed her bag in the backseat and buckled herself in. “Sorry about the long goodbye.”

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