Last Wednesday I said to my husband that I take Elizabeth out for “girl’s night out” more often than we ever go on dates. Seriously, including our anniversary we go out together maybe three times a year. It’s ridiculous. I said we really needed a date night and soon. So, after stalking around for the rest of the afternoon I said to myself, “Screw it. We are going tonight.” We ate dinner and put the boys to bed and then left with the teenager on duty. She was happy because it was easy babysitting, as in, she could play World of Warcraft.
We went downtown to this neat little Bistro that popped up a couple of years ago. They are part of a group of people trying to give that end of downtown a bit more class. Trying to give North Main a more Greenwich Village feel. They are doing great by the way. Our date got off to a rocky start as my hubby declared that this wasn’t “his kind of place”. Tough, order something. He ordered water. Eyeroll. Anyway, I ordered a Sangria, their drink special for the night and I worked at trying to strike up a conversation. It was pretty slow going at first. Remember, three dates a year. What the heck do we talk about other than the kids? Work? The pile of laundry on the couch? It became very clear, very fast that we need more time together. We need to invest in each other, otherwise the kids are going to grow up, move out and we are going to be two strangers living together. It made me stop and think. What do we have in common these days other than our kids? Have we forgotten how to be Travis and Tracey the couple? Do we only know how to be Daddy and Mama?
After a few false starts we did get a good conversation going. And it wasn’t about the kids. We were out back on the patio. It grew darker. I coaxed my picky, new food leery husband into splitting some bruschetta with me. The owner told him it was like little pizzas. Oh yeah, did I mention my husband knows the owners? And their son? This man knows everybody! I’m telling you, the county would stop running if my husband stopped fixing computers. Introductions were made all around. Two hours, and two sangrias later the hubby and I were chatting along nicely. We really enjoyed our impromptu date. And we also decided that every other Wednesday night was date night. Even if it just means two cups of coffee and a quiet table. Realizing that we didn’t have to go whole hog for dinner and a sitter and the whole evening out really freed us up. We decided to work harder at spending time together in the evenings too, instead of us both heading off to do our own separate things once the kids are in bed. I love my hubby, I don’t want us to end up being strangers. I often wonder how many divorces are the product of two people too lazy to give a crap about the future of their marriage? It’s an investment, and that means it’s work. No one said the work couldn’t be fun though.