I don’t know why being a 3rd wheel carries a negative connotation–tricycles are awesome. Fifth wheels, however, introduce somewhat of a problem. Usually, anyway. Or so I’ve heard. Which is why I typically avoid being one.
I don’t want to see all of the couple-y cutesy behavior right in front of my face, reminding me that it’s been almost a year since I did anything resembling that. I don’t want to think about how much more fun everything we’re doing would be if only I had a man next to me. I don’t want to start questioning my self-worth because of something so minor as the fact that I rode in on the train by myself and will leave the same way.
And you know what? I didn’t. I didn’t mind being a 5th wheel. I got to witness some of the cuter (and some of the less cute) couple things my friends did, see how secure they were in their relationships, and wonder if I’d ever be that close to someone in my life–but it didn’t make me sad, annoyed, frustrated, or doubtful. It was more like I was an anthropologist on a study…if the study involved getting pizza at the famed Spumoni Gardens and then sitting on a friend’s couch watching one of the guys repeatedly display his “I’d cap that” app creations as if they were the funniest things he’d ever seen (maybe they were; I’m not judging).
Did it cross my mind that the easy way the 2 couples interacted with each other was something I wanted for myself? Probably, but I didn’t dwell on the thought. I know, that’s sort of hard to believe. But I think it’s because somehow, despite my best efforts not to, I’ve come to truly think that I’m totally worth being a 2nd or 4th wheel for someone. If it takes longer to find that perfect transportation setup, it’s simply because I’m such a unique model and don’t fit in with the assembly line parts of many of the wheels out there. It’s because that other wheel is out there on the road somewhere, rolling down detours just the way I am. It’s because when we finally fit together, that vehicle needs to last forever, and sometimes quality models take longer to build, mechanically speaking.
One day, I do think I’ll find my complementary wheel. One day I will also stop comparing my love life to cars, but that day is not today.