Dating Kevin was one of the most eye-opening experiences I’ve ever had. He was the one that hated my vices and I was faced with a decision to make a life change or go back to being single. I chose single life, but it wasn’t the vices that broke us up–well, sort of.
During the time that I dated Kevin, he’d lost the job he held for over eight years. He was feeling very down on himself and I think because I am a career-minded woman, he was always bothered by any and everything that had to do with my career. Kevin was no longer a working man, his only job was to worry about what I was doing and he did that very well. At first, I took his attention as devotion to me and getting to know me was high on his priority list. As a person in the media, my job is neverending, so there would be times, while we were on a date, or chilling at my apartment, that I would have to pick up my phone, address an email or worse, write a quick story. When we first started dating, Kevin was so enthralled with my demanding career, he even helped me write an op-ed. But that thrill was short-lived.
One busy Tuesday at work, I watched my phone buzz and light up with Kevin’s name and I made a promise that I would respond quickly, but after four hours, another call came through and I slapped my palm to my face. “Hello,” I picked up, trying my best not to sound irritated because I was swamped.
“Hey babe. How’s your day? You saw my message and call?” Kevin said with a bit of desperation in his voice.
“Yes sweetheart, just swamped today, but we’re still on for tonight, no worries,” I said, trying to tackle his intention for calling before he could complain more.
Kevin sighed, “Yeah, I figured. I just really wanted to hear from you.”
“That’s sweet,” I said, checking my attitude before I responded. But then, I did what I normally do when I am irritated; I slathered my comment in sarcasm, “Would it work for you if I designated a 10-minute window everyday that we could chat and just catch up. I know you hate texting,” I smiled, knowing that I was kidding.
“Aww D, that would be sweet. It means a lot that you’re committed to staying connected,” Kevin admitted in honesty.
Wow. Ok. So this dude was serious; he wanted to connect with me on a daily basis and texting wasn’t enough. When I got past the initial shock of, “Ugh, I don’t have time to keep calling him,” I realized that Kevin didn’t think we were connected, unless we were physically together or at least chatting on the phone and/or having face time. This was a different experience for me, but after a lot of internal convincing, I was ready to at least try, however begrudgingly.
Later that evening, Kevin showed up at my job to pick me up for our date. I was so excited to see him. Kevin had this way of making me feel like I was the only woman in the world. “I missed you today,” he said as soon as I walked up to him, within earshot.
I smiled, kissing him and allowing myself to get lost in his lips. “What are we doing tonight?” Kevin asked after we pulled apart.
“There’s a really cool event we can check out, then we can go for a walk and have dinner,” I said, grabbing his hand and leading the way.
“Event? Like, work?” Kevin asked.
“Yes, I got it from work, but I don’t have to work it. It’s a really cool sports event and since you like sports, I figured you’d enjoy it,” I said, automatically feeling like I had to apologize for wanting to bring him to an event I acquired from work.
“Yeah, I don’t know. I mean, Let’s just go,” Kevin proceeded to tag along, but weighed down the whole night with his awful attitude.
I held my tongue, but by the time we got to dinner, I couldn’t hold it anymore, “Why do you get so nasty when I bring up anything about work?”
Kevin looked at me as if I had three eyes, “I don’t mean to be nasty, I’m just not here to be the Stedman to your Oprah. I love that you have a career that you love, but I don’t want to be your plus one.”