She sat down at the kitchen table with her drink. The water for pasta was on the stove, the pasta sauce still in the freezer ready to be taken out and microwaved.
She just got home from dropping off her son’s friend back home. His mum couldn’t pick him up today as she was having people over for dinner. People she met last year through her daughter’s kinder.
Her friend invited her in briefly, said hello, exchanged a few niceties. Then she and her son left to go back home and make dinner.
She’d known this woman for nearly four years. She had never been invited to dinner. Theirs, was a coffee-only relationship.
As she sat there, sipping her drink, she reflected on her undesirability as a dinner guest. It would be tough inviting a single mother over for dinner. Showing her a life she could not have. It was much easier to invite other couples with children.
Then she thought about all those other parties she read about only on Facebook. She no longer made any comments about not being invited. She understood that as a single woman she wasn’t welcome. It was awkward. Her problems were too scary for others to be near, to contemplate, as if somehow they rubbed off on you. Or perhaps she just wasn’t likeable enough.
She took another sip of her drink. The water began bubbling on the stove. Time to put the pasta sauce in the microwave.
The boys were busy with their video game. Too busy to notice her tears.
The ice around her heart thickened just a little bit.
Yes, she knew she could make the first move.
She’d been terrified of having anyone over since she’d been alone. She wouldn’t know how to cope.
There weren’t even enough chairs around the table and, frankly, she couldn’t imagine cooking a meal for more than three. Cooking a meal that didn’t involve mince and grated vegetables…
Her next adult conversation would be on Sunday, with her parents, at their weekly dinner.
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