All my life I have struggled with groups of threes. I am the middle of three girls and someone inevitably gets left out. As we grew up, my younger sister became notorious for yelling “four,” but not like she was playing golf. She was declaring her decision to have four children, assuming that was the solution to keep anyone from being left out. This yelling often occurred at a restaurant when my older sister and I would decide to share a meal.
Not only was I threatened by the number three in sisterhood, but it happened to multiple groups of girls throughout my schooling and even post-college. For some reason, I became panic stricken when I found out that the other two (in any of the said previous groups) were hanging out without me. I would actually like to trace the trauma back to my grade school group of friends, and probably with good reason. However, I am turning 30 this year (woot), and I feel as though I should be over it. I am . . . mostly.
No one likes the feeling of being left out. Whether or not it was the issue of three siblings or friends, being excluded from a couple’s night because I was single or not being invited out because we have a ten-month-old who goes to bed at seven, I have learned something. When someone isn’t invited, how many times do you hear, “I didn’t know if you would want to come, or feel weird about it”? Why don’t you just invite me and let me decide if I will feel weird.
This is what I know: no one’s feelings are hurt from being invited. I want to be a good friend. I want to be generous with my invitations, and let the recipients decide for themselves how they will feel. However, I cannot control who extends invitations to me and that’s ok. I’ve decided not to let that set me back into panic mode. I don’t have to be invited to everything. I mean, who has time for that? Regardless of who wants to hang out with me, I’m still a child of God, the wife to a wonderful husband, and the mother to one cute kid. We live in Melrose and we’d love for you to stop by sometime.