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Date Nights

10/31/2012

A few weeks ago I was grumbling about how “I just want to go home” and I’m tired of living at someone else’s house. Well, there are also a lot of perks of living with my parents. I also mentioned those in my complaining post. One of the best aspects is the ability to leave the house while Ali is sleeping (when one or both of my parents is home, of course). This has been really helpful with all the running around we’ve had to do with the new house. Often during her nap one of us is running down to the house to check on something or other. My favorite is when we’ve been able to put her to bed at 8:00 and then slip out for a few hours. It reminds me of our pre-parenthood days and it’s just lovely. A few times we’ve popped over to our friends’ house either to watch their kid so they could go out, or to have some adult time after their kid is asleep, too. A few weeks ago, in the midst of a busy travel time for Jason and my intense deadline time at work, we were able to grab a late dinner at our favorite Indian place. It was peaceful, delicious and romantic. Despite our busyness, I felt refreshed—like I had just had a weekend in the middle of the week (it was a Tuesday night).

Jason and I have always been intentional about date nights, even during the first 8 child-free years of our marriage. At least once a month we’d spend a little extra (sometimes that meant $30 budgeted instead of $15) and spend some set apart one-on-one time. We continued that habit when we had our first foster placement, a toddler just a bit older than Ali is now. My parents offered to babysit for us one evening early on and it was a precious time for Jason and me to reflect on everything that was happening. Once baby Ali was placed with us, we found it to be quite easy to take her with us on date nights. We could still go to our favorite restaurants, take our time and have great conversation. It’s a bit different now. The more busy we get with work, home building and an active toddler, the more date nights alone have become essential. We can really feel it when we haven’t had one in a couple months because we need it. We crave that time of quiet undivided attention, away from the distractions of home. Thank you to my parents for demonstrating how important date nights are and for valuing them enough to offer to babysit for us!

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In The In Between

09/10/2012

Alianna is learning to walk. On September 4, she took her first steps, 2-3 at a time, between Jason and me. She did it about 10x that evening. Now we can stand her up and once she gets her balance, she’ll stand for quite a while, then take a few steps, then fall. We’re so proud of her and she’s been a trooper about it all, not really getting frustrated but willing to try it over and over again. She’s in this in between stage. Between crawling and walking. Between baby and toddler.

We’ve been in between homes for 7 months now. It’s getting old. Really old. I feel like a jerk for even complaining because I know the new house is going to be a great blessing and worth the wait. In addition, we’ve really got a great situation here living with my parents who help with Ali and cooking and charge us less rent than we’d be getting anywhere near here. But I’m really ready to be in our own home again, you know? I look at pictures of our old house and I miss it. I miss the feeling of coming home. I go inside our new house in the midst of construction and I’m excited…and impatient. I feel stuck in between.

Separation. It’s the step in between married and divorced. Jason and I have some friends who are separated right now after 10 years of marriage. It’s painful to see them hurting, even nauseating at times. I feel so helpless. We’re brokenhearted for them and want so badly to see them come back together. All we know to do is to pray and to be available as friends when they need to talk. I think separation is stupid; it’s one foot into divorce and it’s really hard to move backward. The space in between them is killing their marriage.

I’m beginning to despise the in between.