There once was a time where every single encounter was an adventure, date nights out were a weekly if not twice-weekly thing, uninterrupted conversations were the norm, and quality time was at an all-time high. We had the freedom to leisurely wake up whenever we wanted, spontaneously plan a last-minute trip away for the weekend, binge watch an entire season of something on Netflix, or eat dinner at 11 p.m. just because we could. That time in our lives was about six years ago now, one before we had kids, and before we earned the titles of Mom and Dad.
Our days look a lot different now.
There are times where we go over a month without a date, our little ones are our built-in alarm clocks, we have dinner as a family most nights before 6 p.m., we both fall asleep after two episodes of a show, and uninterrupted conversations feel like we hit the lottery when we do get them. One thing hasn’t changed, though, after all this time; Mom and Dad can still have fun!
Last week while we were all in the kitchen waiting on dinner, we broke out into one of our family dance parties. If you know our house, then you know we almost always have some sort of music playing in the background and busting a move is always encouraged! As our little man, my husband, and I (with our 1-year-old baby girl on my hip) had a kitchen dance party, our 5-year-old stopped mid-move and asked:
“Why are you guys having so much fun?”
We all paused. Then quickly I responded, “Because Mom and Dad can still have fun, too!” This got me thinking about just how many things have changed over the last few years and how grateful I am that laughing and enjoying time together isn’t one of them.
So often as parents, we fall into that rut of just going through the motions, surviving day by day, and then somehow we blink and years have flown by. It is easy to let the fun and spontaneous side from those early days go, and in turn, we end up feeling like roommates. While it doesn’t have to be like that, that is almost the default setting if we don’t combat it.
Marriage is a constant state of learning and then sometimes even re-learning what works.
I won’t sit here and say we have it all figured out because Lord knows, we do not! We do our best to set aside time every night when the kids go to sleep. We will watch a show together, play a game, or make dessert and just sit and talk. We are continuing to learn not to take ourselves too seriously. Parenthood can strip that spontaneous side out, so this has been huge in counterbalancing that. We laugh a lot. Like the laughing that makes your abs hurt! We make the most of the current situation. Quarantine date nights at home have looked like pulling all the cushions off of the couch and making a giant fort, grilling up our favorites and sitting on the porch, ordering takeout from a few different local places to try something new, and tackling a 1,000-piece puzzle together.
I will say this again, we definitely do NOT have this marriage thing down pat, but I’d like to say we are working towards that. We give ourselves and each other grace for those imperfect days, cling tight to what we fell in love with all those years ago, and when in doubt… kitchen dance party it out! Mom and Dad can totally still have fun, even on weeknights!!!