“What goes around, goes around, goes around // Comes all the way back around…” – What Goes Around, Comes Around, Justin Timberlake
boo·mer·ang/ ˈbo͞oməˌraNG/ – A bent or angular throwing club typically flat on one side and rounded on the other so that it soars or floats in flight; especially: one designed to return near the thrower.
There’s something soothing about familiarity, maybe that’s why (wo)men tend to revisit waters that they’ve already swam in. That one – “the boomerang” – is usually that special someone in your life that you were once romantically involved with and may have even loved. Yet for some reason parted ways with. And, like the boomerang, you and this person seem to always find your way back to each other. Am I right?
My boomerang, *Kevin has been in my life for almost a decade. We met by happenstance eight years ago on the E train during the rush hour evening commute, but I remember it like it were yesterday. I sat in the two-seater between the car door and the door operator’s booth (closer to the door) carefully reviewing notes for the exam that I had that night (I was working on my Bachelor’s degree on a part-time basis at the time). The train pulled into the 34th Street Penn Station and I immediately adjusted myself in anticipation of the commuters that were about to flood my personal space – pouring into the car like, packing it like an overcrowded sardine can.
I uncrossed my long legs and moved my purse that was in the seat next me to the floor as a fellow strap-hanger rushed in to assume the now vacant seat. Kevin was amongst the crowd, making his way into the car inadvertently settling in on a spot directly in front of me. The doors eventually closed and made its way down the tunnel as I kept my eyes attentively fixed to my notes – when all of a sudden I felt the need to look up. You know that feeling you get when someone is staring at you? I felt that and obliged the glare’s request. I slowly looked up so as to not make it obvious and bashfully stopped at Kevin’s crotch because, BAM – his “package” was directly in my face. I continued my gaze and was met with Kevin’s eyes – he was looking at me too! “He is CUTE”, I thought to myself as I quickly looked away. “Damn he looks good, I must steal another glance without looking thirsty”. I looked up again, this time looking at another person next to Kevin as a guise to peripherally stalk his fine ass again. To my delight he took notice and was also checking for me when our eyes met. “Ok bitch, now you have an audience, make it good”.
Instead of quickly looking away again I decided to take an unapologetic full inventory of his face and body before resuming my studies – he needed to know that I was HIGHLY interested in what I saw. Brother was tall (6’4” to be exact), dark (ok not really dark, more like a pretty cinnamon complexion), and handsome – VERY handsome; a head full of dark black hair mildly sprinkled with grays with a full beard to match. He was clad in a black pea coat, dark colored slacks, a blue or white dress shirt (I don’t vividly recall this detail), and dress shoes. I don’t know what age us women learn that we must check for the wedding ring, but I had reached that age – his left finger was bare. “YES! He isn’t married”, I thought. I continued with my inventory noticing and admiring his neatly manicured nails.
At this point we’d crossed into Queens (from Manhattan) and were a few stops from the last. The car went from packed to damn near empty as passenger after passenger exited and I started to get nervous. I crossed my fingers in hopes that he was getting off at the last stop (Jamaica Center – Parsons/Archer) like I was. We pulled into Jamaica – Van Wyck station when the passenger next to me got up – “YES BITCH MAKE ROOM FOR MY MAN!” Kevin seized the opportunity and took the seat next to me. It was on now and I was officially nervous. We continued to steal glances at each other, while I noticed his Zune (an mp3 player similar to the Apple iPod) playlist and noticed how diverse it was. Like the iPod, you’re able to see the corresponding artwork to the album that you’re listening to. He swiped from song to song while I saw images of Pac, Wu-Tang, The Roots, and D’Angelo. Nice… He had a good ear. (Sidebar, in my dating years I’ve noticed a correlation between men that listen to a various genres of music and their willingness to try new things. Keep this in mind when you date a man; if he’s strictly into one genre (i.e. hip-hop) 9 times out of 10 he will be unwilling to try different forms of entertainment, cultures, and foods). Sutphin Blvd/Archer Avenue/JFK Airport, the penultimate stop on the E. We pulled in and he sat still. Luck was on my side that night, he WAS getting off at my stop. It was at that moment that I decided that I was going to take the initiative and “shoot my shot”. I put my notes away and pulled my mirror and high-shine Milani sheer lip gloss out from my bag, meticulously applying it to my full lips in preparation of my audacious ploy to introduce myself to Kevin. The plan was to saunter off the train, dig in my bag for a business card (I was a then HR Asst at a PR Firm in Noho), and give it to him after we’d both ascended to the top of the escalator.
“This is the last stop”, the conductor announced as I gathered my things and prepared to stand up, but Kevin sat still. I knew EXACTLY what he was doing, he wanted to see my ass. Again, luck was on my side. I looked exceptionally cute that evening (and knew it) – clad in my favorite pair of Seven For All Mankind dark blue ass-accentuating jeans. Completing the look, a marigold v-neck sweater, cognac-colored cowboy boots, a black waist-length leather jacket, and an over-sized navy blue tote. I stood up and proceeded to follow through with my plan.
Shit my luck ran out (or so I thought), I didn’t have anymore cards on me as I frantically looked through my bag while riding the escalator with the rest of the rush hour commuters. Fuck it, I’ll just give him my phone number when we reach the top. Kevin must’ve had the same plan because I felt a soft touch on my left wrist halfway up the escalator. To my pleasant surprise he’d given me HIS card. I smiled at him, turned around and proceeded to waited for him at the top moving staircase. A few seconds later he greeted me with a smile and formal pleasantries. I wound up giving him my number and we agreed to chat that evening. During said chat, I learned that he was the father of two children (from the same woman, his trifling ex-fiance) and they were both under ten years old (8 and 4 respectively)– yikes. I appreciated his honesty, but had a decision to make. Could I really entertain a man with two children? I could and I did, before I knew it we were dating.
Fast forward to months later – we dated exclusively and spent as much quality time as possible with each other (when he wasn’t spending quality time with his children – which was abundant. He picked them up from their after-school sitter, reviewed their homework, and prepared their evening meals on a daily basis AND had them every other weekend). It was easy to fall for Kevin; He was intelligent, funny, thoughtful, and incredibly sweet. Not only did I fall for him, but my friends and family did too… then I went and threw it all away – I know, I’m crazy.
Frustration set in. Being a twenty-something single woman dealing with a man ten years your senior while being second to this needy children and knowing that he had a vindictive, spiteful, selfish baby mama (BM) was much harder than I thought it would be. So hard that I decided to sever ties with him romantically and to move onto to dating other gentlemen. He understood his my stance and actually sympathized with me noting that “anyone would be crazy to sign up to his crazy life”. I felt bad, but I did what I thought was best for me at that time. We agreed to maintain a friendship and caught up with each other over the years around holidays and other special occasions (i.e. birthdays and graduations) as life happened for both of us. I wound up jumping into a serious relationship and he did too. As life would have it, I eventually broke up with my ex and hopped back into the dating world hoping that he’d be available, but he wasn’t. He was still going strong with his relationship. So, I had to keep it moving.
Our time to never be one – when I was involved he was single. When I went back into the dating world he was involved. But that all changed. The stars aligned and here we are BOTH single.
Kevin asked me out for dinner and a movie a few weeks ago during one of our random check ins and I accepted. We wound up going out within the last few days and we picked right back up where we left off. He looked the same. He felt the same (we embraced and held hands). My heart felt the same. Spending the day and evening with him pretty much solidified what I have felt all these years – that I am still very much in love with him.
During our date we didn’t engage in any “frisky” activity (not even a kiss – although he tried to) as this time around I want to take it slow and carefully evaluate the situation without allowing sex or any sexual activity distract me. His children are older (pre-teen and teen, respectively), they require a lot less attention, and he’s developed a more cordial relationship with their POS mother. I wonder if this could the be the time. Should I give love another chance or simply leave good enough alone and maintain a friendship with him? Lord knows I do not want to play with his heart, so I have to be 100% certain this time around. Time will tell, but for now I am happy that my boomerang has returned… to its sender.
*His name has been changed to protect his identity