Gotham Memories | Brenza

7:00 AM


Her name was Brenza, she lived on the first floor of my dorm in my freshman year. She was a full size woman relegated to a wheelchair who liked to regale anyone who would listen about herself and being a plus size model. She said she was from Brazil and from what I gathered she made FIT her home. Taking every major she could, a perpetual student, Brenza was. A perpetual liar, Brenza was.

I believe I was her friend for too long. It sounds harsh, I know, but hear me out. I am a loyal person, I will be there when a person need me but Brenza took it too far sometimes.

I remember a time when she wanted to go to an electrical store on the east side in the 40's. Let me paint the scene, at that time, I weighed between 128lb and 132lb, Brenza weighed 200lb+. I think we had taken a cab to the store, she did her thing which I think was to exchange a camera or cellphone, I can't remember for sure.

Then Brenza wanted to go to The Wiz on 31st and 6th Ave and she wanted to go by street. Part of the way was up a slight incline and I had to push her wheelchair most of the way.

My resentment was borne from my physical strain, her neediness, her wanting to be the center of attention and my own naivete. I believed her lies, I took what she said at face value because why would someone lie about such things?

As time passed, I stepped back from Brenza long after the people I met her through did. I would wave, make small talk, then leave shortly after. As the years passed, I would watch people get caught in the sticky web of her lies. Only to see her truth and like me slip away from her grasp.

I am not saying she was a bad person, I would say she was a person who created an alter ego for herself or should I say she wrote another story for her life that was more interesting to her than her true story. At the end of the day, it was a lie and a true, lasting friendship can not exist if one party refuses to tell the truth about themselves.

Now, I am happy that the chapter of Brenza was a short one. I don't know where in the world she is, she might very well still be at FIT or she might have found gainful employment somewhere. All I can hope for is that she had learned to accept who she really is and learned to face who she is.

Brenza was her name, and although I spent so much time with her, I never really knew her.

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