But the point of this story, really, is about the part that came after; that is to say, why the part that came before—the breakup and the hurt and the puffy eyes and endless playing of sad songs—was worth it. It was the part before the before that made the difference. And he knew it, too. On our third date, the one with the Chinese takeout, Morty stopped and said to me, "If this doesn't work out—me and you—can we make sure we stay friends?" He immediately apologized for talking about the end when we were just beginning, but I thought that sounded like an awesome deal, and the best kind of compliment. I agreed, immediately.
A few weeks after we split, I ran into Morty at the airport (seven pounds lighter, thank you, breakup diet!). It was good to see each other, if awkward, and we said we'd be in touch. And, we were. I honestly can't remember when it went from awkward and weird to telling each other about our hilarious dates and trying to set each other up, but it did, and somewhere along the line we did stay friends, great friends, the kind who all your friends meet and then want to set up with their friends. The kind of friends who have history, and a whole other history piled on top of it.
A few weeks ago, my mom came to town, and I made reservations for a dinner so that she could meet my best friends, Morty included.
She loved him.
“Meeting Morty—Or, How My Mother’s Friend’s Friend’s Daughter’s Friend’s Brother
Became My Favorite Ex-Boyfriend” Copyright © 2007 by Rachel Sklar excerpted from "Have I Got A Guy For You": What Really Happens When Mom Fixes You Up, edited by Alix Strauss, Polka Dot Press, 2008