Monday, May 5, 2014

"Hi, I'm Kat. I came here alone!"

A really cool thing about being married was having that built-in date, buddy, +1, partner in crime, whatever you want to call it. You have a go-to person for every wedding, barbecue, and brunch. You never have to do anything alone if you don’t want to.

Now, I’m not Kat + Max. I’m not even Kat +1. I’m just… Kat.

I’m an extrovert and very social so I’m usually fine going into any situation alone. But on Saturday, I had a small freakout.

Missing My +1

I was heading to a Cinco de Mayo party in G-town, the town where I shared a condo with Max. I came to despise G-town, the town where my marriage weakened and then collapsed. I’m working on not hating the town, but it’s still full of sad, bitter memories for me.

Anyway, as I drove through the familiar streets in Max’s former car, I remembered the first party that Max and I attended at this couple’s house three years ago. With the exception of my friend Candice and her husband Greg, we weren’t going to know anyone at that party. No matter though, Max and I had each other. He parked the car in the long driveway and we strolled in together, hand in hand.

Now, I was alone.

I called my parents.

“Can I vent?”

Of course, they said. (Yes, both were on the line.)

I hate going to stuff alone, I told them. I know this party will be great once I’m in, but first, I have to walk in. Alone. I can talk to a potted plant if I need to, but I have to get inside first. Candice and Greg are coming but not until later, so I won’t know anyone. This is bullshit, I whined.

“I wish Max were with me,” I confessed. “Not because I want to be married to him, but because I wish I had him to walk inside with me.”

My parents both agreed, completely understanding. My dad had a good tip:

“Find a single guy. Any single guy in his right mind should find you, but if he doesn’t, find him. He’ll be really excited to talk to you.”

I thanked them for listening. I parked the car then checked my reflection in the rearview mirror. (Hey, I’m getting pretty good at applying liquid eyeliner!) Enough is enough, I told myself. There are margaritas and guacamole in there. Go, Kat, go!

I walked up the long driveway alone.

...unless you're walking into a party by yourself
and the strangers aren't wearing wedding rings.
Then it's OK.

Walking In Alone

I took a deep breath and walked in the house. I looked around and knew no one – I didn’t even see the hostess. (Ohmygod why am I doing this?!) Obviously, I made a beeline for the bar and then ordered a margarita. And what do you know? There was a group of three men, none of them wearing wedding rings, right behind me!

“Hi, I’m Kat!” I blurted out, big smile plastered across my face.

They looked at me, slightly confused.

“I’m sorry to interrupt, but I came here alone so… nice to meet you!”

And with that, the ice was broken. Introductions and chatter all around! They were very friendly and good company until Candice and Greg arrived.

Receiving The Best Compliment Ever

An hour or two after facing my fear of walking in alone, I was chatting it up with Candice and Greg. They are a lovely couple, together for 12 years and proud parents of a toddler. As they told me about their daughter’s latest shenanigans, they paused.

“You’re so independent,” said Greg earnestly.

“You really are,” Candice agreed. “We would love it if our daughter were as strong and cool as you.”

I blushed a bit and thanked them.

Best. Compliment. Ever. And to a woman who required a parental pep talk to walk into a party!


What was it like for you to start going to things alone after your divorce or breakup?
Epic Mommy Adventures

16 comments:

  1. "“Find a single guy. Any single guy in his right mind should find you, but if he doesn’t, find him. He’ll be really excited to talk to you.”" - Your dad sounds awesome and super supportive. I know this feeling and it gets better, but it's like the awkwardness of going to lunch on your own...it takes awhile before we learn to like our own company.

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  2. My parents are SO supportive of me. I'm lucky. And it was great advice, too!
    I'm fine being alone for "alone" things, like cooking or running. It's that first step into an environment where you'd usually have company that is my big challenge.

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  3. Joy @ ComfytownMay 6, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    That is awesome! You are independent and strong, and having that initial fear is totally normal, what is the all killer, no filler part of you is that you WENT and handled it, and kicked it's booty. That is great that you have support to understand your initial feelings, and to recognize that you are awesome. Good for you, you got this.

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  4. Great story - your parents sound great and what a great compliment too!

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  5. Ugh. I STILL haven't gotten to this point unless its as a 3rd, 5th and yes even 7th wheel. This is the part I absolutely hate the most about the entire situation.

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  6. Yes and yes. :) Thanks for reading!

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  7. Thank you, Joy!

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  8. I've been going to stuff without my ex for almost two years now. It takes time to adjust when you were used to always having a partner.

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  9. Live by SurpriseMay 6, 2014 at 8:23 PM

    I could never do that. Too much of a wallflower. But my daughter...yes. Like you. Thanks Kat.

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  10. I bet you could do it...!
    Thank you for reading. :)

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  11. Great advice from your dad-I'm going to remember that for myself!

    It is tricky, and I'm usually a very shy person-I probably hid a lot behind my husband in certain social situations. But since we seperated, I've found it's been good at pushing me out of my comfort zone and talking to new people.
    But the other day I was asked if I was going to a 'ball' the school is having..er no, that word almost has 'couples only' plastered over it!

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  12. AwkCelebEncountersMay 8, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    You rule! And I love your parents.

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  13. Thank you! *blushing* And yes, i'm so lucky to have such supportive parents.

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  14. Yeah I turned down a dinner dance thing because of not having a date. It would definitely not be a function where there would be and single guys to talk to. Awkward!

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  15. I did it I did it! Granted my brother was the bartender at the bar I went to, but my point is I did it!

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  16. That's awesome! And it's actually not THAT hard, right?

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