I've always been somewhat of a homebody. While I am a person of good humor there are times when social situations stress me out a bit. I've skipped my share of parties because I would know no one. I've also gone to wonderful events alone and mingled for an appropriate period of time and then scooted away gracefully.
I have skipped events because I felt bad about myself, my size, my attitude and a lack of what I thought of as interesting conversation. "Yup, same job. Nope, not dating anyone. No exciting vacations taken or planned." These were the low moments because if you've been keeping up I've been to Italy, Spain (twice), Ireland, San Jose, California, and most recently Canada. My life has been far from boring.
In the past I've had my nose out of joint for not being invited to events because I didn't have a partner, but also not gone when invited. These moments where I've withdrawn don't happen too often anymore and I'm thankful about that. Backing out at the last minute with a lame excuse is transparent and makes it hard for your kind host(ess) to want to invite you back.
My bookgroup meeting is tonight and it should be great. The book has been completed, I have 'things' to bring up and even some gossip to share. However, I don't want to leave the house tonight. Maybe its the rain, maybe its the drive into town at 6pm, maybe it's my new life with Whatshisface.
I've been a part of this book group since the inception and have loved it from the beginning and while I only see these women infrequently outside of our meetings I really do value them and enjoy hearing about their lives. Over the last 15 years our membership has changed, and I miss many of the former members but I have to say the group we have currently is exciting. Sure, we're all liberal, white ladies in our late 30's and early 40's. We have similar hopes for our families, country, and world but we still manage to discuss the topics illuminated in the books we select in a fierce and passionate way. Seldom do we agree on everything, which makes for great discussions. (Ok, I'm totally talking myself into donning a warm sweater and leaving the house tonight.)
I find it disappointing that as much as I love this group, the idea to call in "sick" crossed my mind. What is wrong with me? Am I one of THOSE women who don't want to venture out without her man?
I use to give my one girlfriend a ton of flack for never wanting to go out with me alone after she got married. I was wrong. (Did you hear that? I'm saying I was wrong!) She was only trying to bring her two worlds together. Her happy married world and the remainder (me) of her single life. Now, all these years later I respect and enjoy the time I spend with her and her husband. I also value the moments we find to have girl talk, but recognize that in our busy lives if we're not together as a group we likely won't be together.
I plan group events (meaning that I'll be there with my fella) and try to keep the "just girls" stuff to weekday lunches or very planned ahead. It's only been 6 months - maybe after I've been married a while we'll venture out on weekends on separate activities, but I kind of doubt it. Becky & Brett have been married for almost 15 years and they still prefer to hang out together. I happily signed on to be a duo, and will be a duo as much as possible.
However, I will still fight for the all girls weekend away - because they are wonderful! And when our book group again plans an outing I will go. (I had to back out last time because of the whole house hunting situation.) I will go tonight and I will love it - but I want credit for leaving my cozy house on a icky rainy day.