The other evening, my husband and I planned to go out for dinner, drinks and dancing with a whole bunch of our crazy, single friends.
But as it turned out, our babysitter fell sick at very short notice, so my husband took one for Team-Us. He decided to stay home, and I got to go out.
Yay for freedom!!
However, on this occasion, we had been planning to take my brother-in-law too. In fact, my husband and I were going to have dinner with bro-in-law before we met up with the others for drinks.
So I found myself all dressed up, driving over to my bro-in-law’s place to pick him up to go out to dinner.
On the way there, it occurred to me that I have never, ever been alone with him for any significant length of time, in the whole time I have known him – what 12 years? Obviously, we have always related to each other through my husband, or the kids, or his parents.
He is totally a super nice guy and he’s easy to be around. But he’s like a big brother to me. And now we were going spend a couple of hours, alone, together, in a nice restaurant.
Can anyone say AWKWARD!!!???
I picked him up and we were both like… “OK haha this is really weird!!”
We had a good laugh about it and it was all good between us.
But while we were driving along and chatting normally, I realised that these strange circumstances had made part of me go into a long forgotten territory of “nervous first date” mode, and I was really self-conscious. Uh oh, is my skirt riding up too high? Is my top too low? Do I have lipstick on my teeth? Did I pop a mint before I left? Am I talking too much? Am I talking too little?
OMG why am I thinking like this?!
I thought it was amusing that this insecure part of me still existed.
Long, long ago, I used to go out on a “first date” twice a week in my quest to find Mr Right :) But now er… I haven’t been on a first date since mobile phones had black and white screens, so that’s like – 13 or 14 years! I guess old habits die hard.
Then I thought maybe the problem was that bro-in-law is so much like my husband. Similar age, similar features, same sense of humor, values, etc. Obviously, he’s the *kind* of guy I could go for… no, wait… DID go for. With this realization, I relaxed a lot.
Even as we walked into the restaurant, I realised people might think we were a couple, or a potential couple. But I was cool with that. I wasn’t self-conscious anymore. I didn’t care. However… I may have relaxed a bit too much.
Because, as the evening progressed, I noticed that I was getting all WIFEY, BOSSY and NAGGY with my bro-in-law.
Saying stuff like, “Are you sure you want to order THAT?”
“I’ll have the fish, you get the beef.”
“Can we swap plates? I want to try that beef.”
“Before we leave, maybe you want to go to the toilet?”
As each phrase came out of my mouth, I instantly CRINGED. I DIED OF EMBARASSMENT.
I couldn’t believe I was saying that stuff!! To a grown-up man!
Do I really talk like that to my poor husband? My MR RIGHT, the last guy to ever have a “first date” with me, has to put up with this crap every time we go out together!!
I was just thankful that it was me who was driving, not bro-in-law, otherwise I’m sure I would have given him a running commentary about his poor driving and parking skills haha.
I was very, very relieved when we met up with the gang for drinks. A good time was had by all. And my bro-in-law, ah bless him, he showed no signs of being weirded out by me.
Maybe he was just good at hiding it.
Or maybe he just feels really, really sorry for my husband now.