I have to share a very strange thought process I experienced the other night.
I think I need a night away…a girl’s night…no, I don’t really want to connect with six different girls all at once…how terrible would it be to tell Ty I’m meeting the girls and just go to dinner by myself…no, that’s definitely lying and completely crazy…and I would miss the kids and Ty, I love our family time and I would want to talk to Ty…so, maybe Ty can come…yeah, I’ll go sneak out to dinner with Ty…so, a date. I think I want to go on a date.
In my defense, I had a sinus infection, it was the end of the day and the week and I obviously wasn’t thinking clearly.
But dates are important! The past two or three months have had us a little off schedule with traveling, weddings and finances. We budget for one date night a month and if we end up eating out with friends or family or whatever, well, that’s our date night. In case you can’t tell, we don’t see the inside of a restaurant very often.
So each month we talk about it, plan it out and try make it happen most of the time. We’re not perfect, but we know how amazing it is to sit down at a table, pick up a menu and then just look at each other. I don’t need to strap anyone in to a high chair, move all the cutlery and water glasses out of toddler reach or tackle a waiter and politely (but urgently) request fruit or bread be delivered asap.
We can just…talk. About anything. I can tell him about the crazy-funny thing Big Brother said, chat about some article I shouldn’t have read about how our country is going down the tubes or dream about our future home on 5 acres with goats and chickens. Yeah, he wants that. I’m going with the flow.
But these times don’t just happen. We pick a weekend, I schedule a babysitter, and then we have scattered conversations and text messages about potential restaurants. Maybe there’s a movie coming out or maybe we leave the restaurant and go to bed at 9:30 p.m. like every other day. It’s our date, we can do whatever we want.
We’ve been married six years, so we definitely don’t know everything and I have a lot to learn on how to not act crazy. But I’m getting better and one think I’ve learned is that if I want a date, I have to tell him.
I know. I didn’t have to tell him before we were married, right? What’s changed, huh? We got married and now we have dinner together nearly every single night. That’s what changed. He doesn’t have to plan out a special time to see me, because he sees me every single day. That’s also the totally awesome part of being married. Also we went from two incomes to one, so there’s that too.
In this time, I’ve learned that he’s really bad a mind-reading. Besides, how can I expect him to know where and when I want to go to dinner since I don’t even know? And I have opinions on these things! I mean if I’m not going to eat out for another month then it better be good.
So, let’s get real. I have about three male subscribers on my blog (hi, Dad) so, this is for the lay-dees out there. Girl, if you want to go on a date, you better tell him. And if this is the first time you’ve ever done this (or the 200th) you may have to do more than just mention it. You may need to tell him you’re available for a date on the 23rd and you happen to know his mother is available to watch the children over night and oh yeah, here’s a list of 5 restaurants you would be happy going to.
I’ve learned that initiation isn’t my love language. For some fine ladies, it is. Maybe they don’t care where, when or what you do as long as you initiate. I don’t mind initiating a time out and in fact, if the date, time and place doesn’t jive with the rest of our schedule, it stresses me out. So, that’s me. I know that if there’s something I really want, I am not going to risk not getting it by hoping Ty will figure it out.
**If initiation is your love language…maybe accidentally-on-purpose forward this blog post to your guy (hi guy, if this came to you in an email, she wants a date. A quick trip to for ice cream may be all you need. sincerely, the Internet).**
Want to know the other absurdity? Ty likes giving me what I want! He doesn’t like guessing at what I want if I already know the answer. This is not a game. This is a marriage and I don’t mess around with date night.
Maybe your guy needs some help getting on track, kinda like I needed help and patience adhering to the $0 budget Ty set up. Maybe you need to pick the day and do the groundwork on the babysitter. Here’s a little script to help get you started:
You: Hey, it looks like we don’t have any plans on the 20th and I think your parents would be free to watch the kids. Think we can schedule a date?
Him: Sounds good.
Now, if the conversation ends here, nothing will happen. The 20th will come and go and you’ll be home because he didn’t hear you ask him to schedule it with his parents and make a reservation at that restaurant you mentioned two months ago. You’ll be mad and he won’t know why and instead of walking hand-in-hand through a garden adorned with twinkle lights, you’ll be home fighting. But at least you’ll have made your point that planning dates is important to you…
Instead, let’s add some clarity, shall we?
You: I’ve asked your mom to watch the kids a few times this month for some other appointments, would you mind checking with her to see if she’s free?
Him: Sure. Do you know where you want to go?
You: Not really, but I think I’d like something casual. I don’t want to spend a ton of money. Maybe Mellow Mushroom or something like that. It’s your date too, so I’ll let you choose. (Of course, if you know where you want to go, this would be the time to speak up).
I know this sounds super obnoxious and bossy, but it seriously breaks my heart to hear of couples who only date bi-annually, on major holidays or not at all! Maybe your husband doesn’t think it’s important. I can totally understand why putting the kids to bed and lounging in front of the TV sounds relaxing, but there’s something wild about eating together, just the two of you and then coming home to a quiet house. Maybe the kids slept over at grandma’s or maybe a miracle babysitter put them to bed. Either way, it’s quiet.
This is good practice because eventually, it will be only quiet. The kids will leave (fingers crossed) and if you’ve been out of practice of just being with your husband it’s going to be incredibly awkward.
And now I have to brag (f you would like to brag, write it up, send it to me and I’ll post it. Seriously). I’m going on a date tonight! Ty planned it all himself down to the time I would drop off the kids at his mom’s. He texted me earlier this week and said “We are going out Thursday night. My mom is watching the kids overnight. We will eat pizza and see a movie.”
Honestly, it was so…in charge, I got a little flustered. He is getting so many points for this date, it’s kind of ridiculous. I’m going to straighten my hair and wear my new white pants. It will be exhilarating.
And don’t worry, the kids will have a blast. Seriously, every time we pick up the kids from our date they start crying. As in, they don’t want to leave. It’s a super fuzzy moment for me (not) but at least my mind is completely at ease when we’re apart. I know they’re having fun, drinking the juice I don’t buy for them, indulging in fruit snacks or Oreo’s (depending on which grandparent’s they’re with) and getting lots and lots of playtime.
So get yourself a date, girl. You need it, he needs it and you will not regret asking for it.