So, I have been a single mom for almost 13 years. Okay, okay, I kicked him out 8 years and 11 months and 4 days ago:). But I have always been the one taking care of my baby, not so much one now, but always my baby! Because of him not ever being a part of the family kind of dad, I have pretty much always flown solo to parties, gatherings, meet ups, playdates, etc. Most of the times it would be kids and moms, but about 1/3 of the time there would be complete families and I would be the 3rd or 12th wheel depending on how many people were there.
Fast forward to fall of 2016. I met my boo, my prince, my love, my sweetheart, etc., as you all know. I am not available much on weekends anymore. And I honestly think that many of the sucky people who I considered friends are not really happy for me or about it, when it comes down to it. They are used to the “poor, single, all by herself Dee. They are used to me saying: “Sure I will come over”, for Thanksgiving or whatever shindig they hosted. I was always grateful to be invited, but honestly I was never lonely for their company to begin with.
I am one of those rare women or people for that matter who was completely okay being alone. Don’t get me wrong, I used to long for a mate. And not just any mate. A life partner. A best friend. Someone like the man that I have now. Glory be to God for bringing him to me!! I digress, But I was happy enough. Of course I wanted to arrive with a complete family like everyone else. I didn’t want to be the only woman that was single, but it worked okay as it was and all was good with the world. Not as good as I have it now, but you get the point.
Well now, I am not alone. When people invite me and my daughter, they in essence invite my guy. I got invited to a graduation party for Saturday and I rsvpd for 2 adults and 1 child. We are now a package deal, unless it is a girl’s spa day or something incredibly girly that is specifically for me to attend. Some of my friends are overjoyed that I have found the love of my life and some are not quite so thrilled. It is quite obvious from the responses I get when I say I am unavailable. But I don’t feel bad about saying no, ever. Because I have always put myself in their shoes when they had family time on the weekends or the weekends were with their hubbys, or whatever jargon aka b.s. they used.
For instance, I have a friend that was supposed to come swim in our community pool last weekend for a mom and daughter playdate, but my main squeeze was in town as he is most weekends and she canceled. She told me on the text that she didn’t want to take time away from my company. On the phone today she went on to elaborate that she thought of it as our time to chat and would be just ‘different’. Then she said: “I know that you have been a 3rd wheel with me and my husband but it is not the same.:) I didn’t get her point, but what was I supposed to say? That she is a real mashugana?
At the time, I was a little put off and annoyed, but I have so much going on in my day to day that I don’t have time to trip over this kind of thing. But the more I think of it, the more I realize that people just aren’t used to me not being available. And not just this friend. People are used to pretty much anytime they call, me being able to attend their event, or to have quite a bit of spare time to visit with them. Now don’t get me wrong, I have always been busy and had a full calendar, but I squeezed people in more when I did not have my hubby to be in my life.
And the thing is, there would be months that I would not see these people, and no one ever once thought to see if I needed a sitter or help of any kind. The person I just spoke of, did check on me a lot. But many of my friends never stopped to consider that I am all by myself and could probably use a hand every now and then. They would also rarely be available to attend things with us, or their kids would be tied up, but we kind of got used to being the ones to reach out and if it ended up that the 2 of us were together alone, we were okay with it. But when we would get together, it would be all joyous as long as I was on their agenda and I was pretty much always available to talk, but now I am not. And there lies the rub.
Our lives have changed, in that I work out of the home a lot more, I will be married again soon and my daughter has a more packed schedule than ever. People too expect(ed) her to be their 3rd wheel or reliable invite. They were used to the ‘home schooled only child’ being able to fill in a gap if a family wanted to take a friend along. And honestly, we were honored. The invites weren’t constant, but we would usually say yes. But my daughter was often the one reaching out the most and always available and she sometimes felt let down to be the one constantly keeping the friendships afloat. I think that she is glad that our lives have changed so that she too can turn down people for plans sometimes. We now have family plans, so there!
You think that our friends would be so happy for our little 3 Musketeer vibe. Our triangle of completion. Our finished puzzle. Haha. You get the point? But I think that people are inherently selfish and for the most part only do what suits them. It is okay that my friend “Sheila” could not speak on the weekends because she was just too busy, but because I am too busy during the week now, I am forgetting about my friend because I have a man? Isn’t it unreasonable that my married friend who canceled the playdate is not willing to hang out with us as a couple without her hubby though that is all that I have done for the last 6 or 7 years? I don’t understand if it is because we are still a dating couple, which means less, or what?
I honestly think that as much as people are afraid of or hate change in their own lives, they don’t like it when other people make changes either. People like constancy and consistency. They like to rely on people and depend on them to help fix them or entertain them or be there when they have down times, or downtime. And I am just sorry. I can’t or won’t be that for people anymore. As my church says: “God accepts you as who you are right now, not who He wants you to be”, or something like that. Well, people are going to have to accept me with my ever-changing job schedule and my fun-filled weekends with my guy and my kid and the fact that I am running my kid to rehearsals, etc.
They can either get on board or be left behind like in Noah’s Ark. I am honestly done being that go-to girl. I am over being the one to compromise and turn myself inside out to meet with other people. If my guy and I don’t have but 2 couples to hang out with when he lives here, then that is fine. But I have changed and whether people can handle it or not is their issue. I have more issues than Vogue, no joke. But one thing that I cannot make my issue is people having a problem with the way that I live my life or spend my time. And neither should you. Live for God and for yourself and immediate loved ones and don’t worry about the rest!