BENCHWARMER AT A WEDDING DANCE

by Steve Clem on October 10, 2010

There’s nothing like a wedding to drive home how single you are.

You’re there for a special moment in two people’s lives, and for an instant, even as a divorced dad, you can even let go of the jaded idea that marriage sucks.

I realized this weekend, while attending my niece’s wedding in Sioux City, that I have been single at every wedding I’ve attended since getting divorced over 4 years ago.

Now mind you I haven’t been single the entire time since my divorce, but every time I was attending a wedding, sure enough, it was either me solo, or me with my sons.

Last night, I was enjoying myself on the dance floor numerous times, when I was forced to my seat by the song selection of the DJ.

For every “You Shook Me All Night Long” there’s a “The Way You Look Tonight.” For every “YMCA” there’s a “Have I Told You Lately?” For every “Macarena” and “Chicken Dance” there’s a Couple’s First Dance and Father/Daughter Dance that usually brings tears to the eyes of every woman in the place.

And every time the sappy slow dance song comes on, I made my way back to my lonely table, full of empty beer cans and plastic cups, and chairs covered with suit coats and ties.

Don’t get me wrong…I’ve made a choice the last year and a half or so to pretty much ignore the thought of dating and focus on my boys and myself. But that doesn’t mean I don’t second guess that decision when I’m faced with a night filled with superlatives about how great marriage is, how they’re beginning the rest of their life together, and how great they seem for each other.

I know I’ve already neutron-bombed the post-modern American Dream of a mini-van, a happy wife and kids, living in an idyllic suburban 4 BR 2 BA home.

But that doesn’t mean I’m not interested in having someone to approach at a wedding reception, grab her hand, and say “Hey beautiful, want to dance?”

Someone to wake up with a hot cup of coffee waiting for her in bed.

Someone that will want to laugh with me as I watch the world around me and just want someone to turn to and say “Did you just see that?”

Someone to take the good days and bad days in stride.

Together.

So maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I need to knock down the brick walls I’ve erected and start figuring out what options are out there again.

Because I sure the hell am getting sick of having to sit out on the sideline every time a Lionel Ritchie song comes on at a wedding dance.

* * * *

Steve Clem originally published this piece on the blog A Prisoner in the Tundra.

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