Feb 27, 2016

A Crash Course in the Importance of Dating Your Spouse

There are pros and cons to everything. Blessings hidden in trials. Lessons woven into every experience. With little Ione’s early arrival we’re seeing quite a bit of this. Things have not worked out how we ideally would have liked them to, but we’re seeing some neat things come out of this whole experience. 
One thing we’re learning is that we haven’t been very good at dating each other. Cameron and I have both been able to be over here at the NICU with Ione this week (his boss called him this past Sunday and told him to take the week off, and my parents have Darrow at their house). Between feedings we have about 90 minutes to hang out, check out the town, visit, eat, and just be us. And those snippets have been wonderful! 
We haven’t done anything earth shatteringly amazing, but just the time together has been fabulous. It can be so easy to get in a rut, to get swamped with life, and to just put your head down and plod onward that “romance” gets left on the back burner for way too long. 
Simple things like holding hands (which really is what got things moving for us in the first place), stealing a kiss in the elevator, laughing and visiting, snuggling in the evening, and grabbing our favorite cheapo pizza (Little Ceasars!) together have been missing in our life. This week, they are abundant.
We’ve been hearing “Date your spouse!” for nearly 10 years now, and have kinda brushed it aside. Before kids it was easy. Any “outing” was like a date. From the time Darrow was born until now I think we’d been on 4 dates total. Maybe 3. 
Kids are important, and family time is important, but nurturing that essential and foundational relationship between husband and wife is key. We have to keep that alive and strong! Too many couples forget that. We forgot that. It took having a baby in the nicu and these 90 minute “dates” to realize we needed to put a lot more work into “us”. Into our marriage. Strengthening our marriage will strengthen our family as a whole. 
Now this isn’t to say we were in a bad spot before, but we should have and could have been much stronger and much closer. So we have a new resolve to date and woo each other. A new resolve to make sure that we are nurturing this eternal companionship we have, and strengthening the friendship that our whole relationship is built upon. 
 Oh this man makes me smile! He’s my favorite!
A great relationship doesn’t just appear out of nowhere. It takes time, work, trust, and love. But oh, it is worth every second, every thought, every sacrifice, and every bit of yourself.

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