I can’t seem to keep ex-boyfriends as exes. They have an odd way of popping up every couple of years and we go through phases where they toggle between ex, not quite ex, kinda boyfriend, maybe friends, mortal enemies. It’s actually a lot like a soap opera where a character gets killed off, but then shows up the next season with either a sex change or mysterious amnesia and can’t recall anything that happened to him, or you for that matter. Or even better, it’s like a reboot of your favorite comic book series: new staging, different character arcs, maybe even different hair color or piercings, but with the same characters.

A large part of the cycle is due to the manner in which my exes pop up. It’s like I make them appear. One day, I’m thinking about him and SHAZAM, who do I run into that night in the supermarket? It always seems so serendipitous. So breathless there’s-no-way-this-could-be-a-coincidence! that I fall –maybe that’s refall- for it every time. It’s all very Mad-Girl’s-Love-Song-esque.

mad girl's love song sylvia plath

To illustrate my mad psychic-telepathic skills, allow me to tell you a crazy story (grab some Kettle Korn because this one is really good).  I was on deployment — you know on a ship in the middle of the ocean — and I was having an awful couple of hours because of freshly spilled bad blood with the Ex-Mayor. I was angrily typing an email to The Bestie about the Awfulness. Of. It. All. Drama Queen that I am, I started to envision ex boyfriend hell which, oddly enough, resembled Memorial Hall at the Naval Academy. It was a combination of the 5th, 3rd, and 9th circles.

All of my ex-boyfriends were there and it was just like the rose ceremony at the end of every Bachelor episode only they weren’t holding roses  — they were holding accusations — and everyone was yelling, at me. It was a stressful daydream so I took a break from the email and walked to the bathroom still thinking about ex-boyfriend hell. A Sailor stopped me in the hallway to ask if I knew where some room or other was. I shook myself out of my daydream enough to reply “Ugh…no.” And then I looked up. Do you know who was standing behind the directionless Sailor? Wait for it…..My ex-boyfriend!

Seriously. The first guy that I ever dated, my college boyfriend for three years and then on and off for another two years (vicious cycle), the one I was convinced that I would marry one day, was standing in the middle of the hallway on my ship that was in the middle of the ocean in the middle of a nine-month deployment and I was the first person (other than his directionless guide) that he ran into. Of all the ships in the Navy and he happened to show up on mine as I was envisioning him in ex-boyfriend hell.  I think I made you up inside my head. Truer words have never been said, Sylvia.

He is in the Navy so it wasn’t completely outside the realm  of possible that we would eventually run into one another, but there are also about 300,000 other people in the Navy who didn’t just pop up on my ship on deployment. He was there for a week and that will require a completely separate post in itself.

I think you get the point. I have powerful brain waves! I can conjure people up. This is probably the most outlandish case, but it happens routinely. I wonder if any of that has to do with closure and unfinished business. Perhaps that’s why I still think of them and they reappear. Maybe ex-boyfriends remain in purgatory until you close out your unfinished business. Which leads to the ultimate question:  how exactly do you know when you’ve closed that loop?

*le shrug*

I guess I’ll figure that out in the next week or so. Segue way to my dinner date for the night. We’ll call him the Magician due to his ability to disappear and reappear at will in my life. You’d think I’d know better by now and part of me does, but the other part of me — the part that wins out — always thinks…no, it will definitely be different this time. It never is.

I’ve got to take my friend J9’s advice and use my powers for good. Look out Idris Elba and Joseph Gordon-Levitt — I think we might have some unfinished business.



4 Comment on “Single Girl Problems: Ex-Boyfriend Hell

  1. Pingback: Single Girl Problems: You’re Single Because… | Pretty For A Black Girl

  2. Pingback: The Magician’s Final Act | Pretty For A Black Girl

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