There’s many indications of single-dom in society, and I’m not just talking about my dinner of ice cream and red wine alone on Valentine’s Day. I’m referring to the more subtle signs, the things that occur to you as a single person going through your daily routines. It’s cooking for one. It’s not having anyone to help you move, or at least nobody that is helping you because he knows he’ll get a NICE reward afterwards. It’s the “and guest?” syndrome where, knowing that you have weddings right around the corner, you again relegate yourself to be sharing a room with another one of your single girlfriends, ducking the bouquet, and standing by yourself in the corner when “all the couples who are in love” go out for their dance. I’m not broaching this to invite you to my own personal pity party, just was realizing it when I was at the airport last evening.
At the Atlanta airport, the arriving passengers go up an escalator and arrive on a landing full of waiting friends and family, often complete with signs, balloons or bouquets. Men and women, anxious to see their loved ones, tackle the maze of parking in order to show their loved one that they care. And I, arriving home to my animals, a lot of dust bunnies and a snoring roommate, walk by them all with a feeling of longing, wondering when someone will be waiting for me.
Pre 9-11, I went to the airport once to drop off and once to pick up my then boyfriend, waiting for him at the gate, excited about our reunion after he’d been away for a month and a half. It was only natural that I would drop him off and pick him up – I didn’t want to wait to see him when he returned. (Perhaps I should have reconsidered, since he dumped me a week later, but that’s another story for another time.) Anyway, these days, the last person I see when I leave is the cab driver and the first person I see when I arrive is someone else’s boyfriend, husband, son, daughter or wife.
And doing this last night, I came to the realization that this might be a new criteria in my love life, since I’ve dated people since Mr. European Dumpee five years ago, and only ONE of them has ever driven me to the airport. The rest? I’ve taken cabs. I’ve gotten friends to pick me up. I’ve even had a car service. But a boyfriend? Apparently seeing me as soon as I arrive or bidding me farewell in person just hasn’t been that important to them. Which makes me realize, perhaps they shouldn’t have been that important to me.
Just like the road to the airport, love is a two-way street, and I’m tired of spending it in a car by myself.