Imagine a world where even through the exhausting years of pregnancy, breastfeeding every three hours and postpartum panties you never skipped a date night.
This world has not existed for my husband and me.
We skipped several date nights after our first son was born. Then it wasn’t long before we were back in the exhausting years of pregnancy, breastfeeding, and postpartum panties for the second time and then the third.
We were sitting across the dinner table from one another using octopus arms to shovel food into the mouth of babes, side by side parenting as mommy and daddy but not really connecting as husband and wife.
We made excuses.
Michael and I were actually spending lots of time together. We have family days and we eat supper together every night. We minister to couples and students together and we would both crash on the couch in front of the television most evenings after the kids went to bed.
BUT. We were not having fun together. We were not enjoying one another as often as we needed to.
Since February we have been on a mission to redeem date night. To find a night once a week where we can sit across the table from one another and leave our octopus shoveling arms at home.
Redeeming date night has been challenging. The first three weeks we fought because learning the new routine was tough on me. If you have ever prepared three small children and your home for a babysitter you know it can be challenging. The process of getting ready to head out the door was so stressful for me I was exhausted when we headed out the door.
There have been budget concerns. We do not have the kind of funds to go out every week and pay a sitter.
Luckily my husband is good a redefining expectations and being creative about date and babysitter planning.
The body of Christ has been so good to us and we have about three couples and a few young adults that have offered to give up their Friday nights to us at no charge.
We stretch the gift cards we have been given, we go to high school musical productions, we have been to see one of our friends sing and play piano with his band, and our Cincinnati Ballerina friend has given us some of her discounted tickets to the Ballet.
I have learned to give my husband a list five hours prior to leaving for a date with all of the things I “think” need to be done before leaving for the evening. My husband helps me divide up the list and I now can feel less exhausted when we head out the door.
Redeeming date night has been hard work. It seems like in the exhaustion of pregnancy, breastfeeding and postpartum panties we forgot how to go out together. But redemption is a process of recovery and restoration. Taking something that has been tarnished and restoring it back to the way it once was: before the years pregnancy, breastfeeding and postpartum panties.
Little by little date night will be redeemed and restored to the way it used to be.
Keep the conversation going…
How have you kept date night going in your home?
What are some creative budget saving ways you have discovered while redeeming your date nights?