I’ve never understood people who take their kids everywhere. My friend recently related it to how you feel about your spouse after you get married. You want to experience everything together, and it’s almost like the experience isn’t complete unless you are both there. She said that’s how she feels about her kids now. Initially, I have to admit, I did not agree.
Don’t get me wrong, I love blowing hours in the backyard with my son, but I’m usually ready for a break once bath time comes. I used to inwardly panic when my husband would suggest that we’d always travel together as a family – meaning there would be no need to leave the kids with Grandma for a week. I honestly thought that he would come to his senses soon enough. Kids are hard and everyone wants a break. As a mom, I felt darn-right entitled to a break! That is, until last night.
My meat-loving brother gave us a gift card to The Outback for Christmas last year. And when June rolled around, it was still floating in my wallet. I’d been saving it for a date night that never seemed to pan out; when suddenly at 5pm on a Sunday evening my husband suggests that all three of us go to The Outback for dinner. It didn’t sound horrible, but my idea of a romantic dinner date was squashed by images of high chairs, kids’ menus and crayons.
When we all piled into the car, I didn’t know that we’d be seated at our booth for two hours. I didn’t know that our son would be an angel the whole time or that Spence and I would have some of the best conversation we’ve had in a long time – including locking down boy/girl baby names for #2 who is currently half-baked. I didn’t know that we would have a blast playing games with the coasters and sliding glass mugs across the slick table, all of which our son found highly entertaining. In short, the service was slow, the food was terrible and I would never elect to actually spend my own money at The Outback, but this was one of the most memorable meals of my life. And while I would still like to jet off to NYC for a few days to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary in a few years, I finally caught a glimpse of what people are talking about. Date night is valuable, but truly complete are the precious moments shared together as a family. And my family is an invaluable privilege.