OK, so I’ll admit it. I have a bad habit of digging in the crates of my old boos and trying to unearth one that I could dust off in the hopes of getting him to give me a smoother melody than he did when I had him in rotation the first time around. So far, this dating tactic hasn’t done anything for me but show me that these men were shelved for a reason.
I’m no therapist, but I think a major reason I do that is because I just don’t have the energy to meet and get to know someone knew. I know, that’s just crazy, or lazy, or both. But I just want to go ahead and fast forward to the point in my relationship where we’re no longer trying to impress each other. You know, when those layers have melted away and we’re able to just lay around on the couch on a Thursday night or it’s actually fun to play our favorite tunes for each other or we casually pass gas around each other with giggles. But alas, I am single AF and inevitably have to play the get-to-know-you game with whoever the next guy is. I am hoping by then I develop some type of interest in getting to know someone from scratch because right now…no thanks!
When Eric asked me to be his again, I was ecstatic about the fact that I already knew Eric and getting to know him (again) was pleasurable and, honestly, not as hard because I knew him already. Then there was also the possibility that he’d aged to perfection and would be the man I’d always wanted him to be. I had also matured and knew I had what it took to show Eric that I was the woman he wanted a future with. Seemed like a win-win.
“Your heart is safe with me Dee,” It was almost as if Eric could sense my apprehension. “You don’t have to be afraid to let me hold it again. I promise I won’t mess this up this time.”
Eric was holding up his end of the bargain, albeit a long distance love affair, but he still showed up for me and gave me all the confidence I needed to know he was committed. We continued to talk nearly everyday, and on the days when we didn’t connect voice to voice, we shared random texts of our day. We shared our calendars so that we were always aware of each other’s schedules and there were no exaggerated stories of infidelity cooking up in either of our heads because we were aware of why there’d be no response from one another.
We were creeping closer to the holidays, and both of us were excited that I’d be traveling home to North Carolina for a week. If you remember, Eric lives in my home-state, about 45 minutes away from where I grew up. We both insisted on spending way more time than we probably could finagle with one another. It was the holidays, so much of my time was promised to family and friends in town.
Eric called me, “What’s up Dee? Getting ready to make your way down here?”
“Yup. I know you’re excited,” I flirted with Eric.
“I am, but I have some bad news.”
My heart sank, “Hit me with it.”
“The week you’re coming down here for Christmas, I will be in Atlanta with my mom. We’re going to spend Christmas with our family down there,” Eric sighed. “But trust me, I am trying to figure out if I can leave later or come back earlier to spend at least a day with you.”
“Aww, that’s sweet babe. But I understand. Family first,” I was trying this new concept. It’s called understanding. Ha! I’ve never been the best at being understanding because I’m spoiled and want things my way. But I knew Eric wanted to see me since it would be the first time since we started dating again that we’d see each other in person.
“I’m going to figure this out. I’ve got to see my Dee,” Eric assured me.
And then life decided to throw a wrench at me–directly at my foot. I was leaving a holiday party and I stepped off the curb and immediately slid down to the floor. Black ice claimed my whole life. My leg twisted under me and I winced in pain.
The urgent care doctor explained that I’d fractured a metatarsal and attempted to talk me out of my upcoming Christmas travel plans. I called my mom and explained to her that I was coming home to North Carolina and that instead of just staying a week, I was now staying closer to a month. The doctor gave me a 6-8 week heal period and I decided it was safer to spend that healing time in North Carolina rather than crawl up and down my three flights of stairs in Brooklyn.
“I’ve got good and bad news!” I alerted Eric.
“Bad first,” Eric said.
“I broke my foot.”
“Ouch! How the hell did you do that babe?”
I told Eric the slip and fall story. “But this bad news comes with good news.”
Eric laughed, “Well that’s good. Hit me.”
“I decided to stay in North Carolina longer to heal. So I’ll still be around when you get back from Atlanta!”
“Oh baby, that’s perfect! I was going to tell you that my mom wants to drive down to ATL and of course, she wants me to do the driving. So I wasn’t going to be able to leave later or come back sooner to see you,” Eric said.
“Well look at that!” I laughed.
It was settled. When Eric came back from Atlanta, we were going to get a hotel room, luxuriate, love up on each other and store all the quality time in our cheeks until the next time we saw each other.
“I wanted to talk to you about something else babe,” Eric sighed.
“What’s going on?” I asked, concerned.
“I have to move out of my apartment. I almost killed my roommate and his cousin today,” Eric started. “I came out and my roommate’s cousin stole all the gifts I just bought for Jada.” Jada is Eric’s 12-year-old daughter. Shortly after he and I parted ways all those years ago, he got back together with his ex and Jada was the result of that reunion.
“How do you know it was him?” I asked.
“I just know. The n*gga tried to make it look like a robbery. When I got home, he was like, ‘Somebody robbed you.’ None of it adds up. And before I kicked his ass and my roommate’s ass, I left. I’m at my mom’s house right now, Eric said.
“What are you going to do?” I asked, more concerned about his living situation than his daughter’s now-sucky Christmas.
“I don’t know,” Eric sighed. “I worked really hard to get her the things she wanted. I can’t believe this.”
I stayed silent, letting him talk his way to a solution.
“I’ve never done this, but f*ck it, I’m desperate. Babe, could I borrow $300? I’ll give you back $400 after Christmas.”
I sat there in silence. There was so much going through my head, my mouth was paralyzed.
What’s going to happen next?! Stay tuned for next week’s column!