When was the last date night you and your significant other had? This week? Last month? Can’t remember?
Beginning with our premarital counseling, I recall hearing from various people about continuing to “date” after you were married. I listened to what was being said, but didn’t fully understand the significance of this until years later…..say, a few weeks ago. My husband and I have been blessed with a strong relationship which has made the last six years of our marriage a fairly easy walk. However, with an increasing work load and three children under the age of four, our time together has significantly changed. Those leisurely Sunday afternoons together have changed into a blur of family activities, dinner table talk has shifted to imaginary adventures of toddlers instead of the two of us catching up about our day. We love our family and all of the time we get to spend together, so it hadn’t even crossed my mind (even with the persistent reminders from my sisters) that we need some time for just the two of us. We have been perfectly content spending all our time with our kiddos.
However, a few weeks ago, my sister in law (and fellow Gingham Apron Blogger), Annie wrote this article about Weekly Date Nights with your spouse ….a quick read on why it is important to continue dating and how to make it happen in the busy years of raising children. The article spoke to me and I thought, well, lets give it a try. Just as the article states, you need to be creative with your time together. Three young children is not an easy babysitting task for most and living in a rural area really limits your options for dates. Therefore, our date nights look a little different than most. Over the past three weeks we have managed to carve out several evenings of time for just the two of us, whether it was sitting out on the screened porch together after the kids had gone to bed (yes, our kids have survived those few evenings when we made them fall asleep alone, without us in their bed. ha), loading the family up at bedtime and continuing our drive once they are asleep so we can spend “alone” time together (don’t tell the kids we stopped for ice cream while they were sleeping in the back seat) or an actual dinner date. It has been absolutely wonderful. In the madness of child rearing, I hadn’t even realized how much I missed my husband. I missed his ridiculous jokes, I missed the two of us just sitting snuggled up (without three kids piled on us), I missed the adult conversation. I just had no idea how significant it is to have a weekly date night!
My entire point here is….even if you are happily married, even if you love your family time, carve out time with one another. Read Annie’s article I linked above and be inspired to find creative ways that work for you and spend one on one time together. Find a way to make it happen, even if it is something as simple as sitting on the deck together…..you will not regret it!
Now, please excuse the abrupt end to my post….I have a coffee date waiting on the patio and who knows when kiddos will wake up.