Sometimes on a Sunday morning when the weather is nice, we’ll head out to an open air market in the city. We’ll stop for coffee and pastries at our favorite of the many coffee shops that line the streets and then walk around in our sugar haze, gazing at the fruits and vegetables, jewelry and small wooden toys. Rarely do we come home with anything. It’s more about the outing.
Often, M and I will look longingly at the cafés, the people sipping coffee with a newspaper, passing their early Sunday hours slowly and quietly, and we’ll remember when such a thing fit nicely into our lives too. A lifetime ago. These days, Sunday mornings more often mean a kitchen covered in flour, dire warnings to small people to keep their small fingers away from the waffle iron, and about a half dozen reads of The Little Blue Truck all before the market even opens. And when we do make it out to the market, we don’t even think about the newspaper. Instead we swallow gulps of coffee while rescuing the syrup bottle from an untimely death on the floor and laughing with our chocolate covered companions. These days, Sunday mornings are also lovely but sometimes I miss newsprint on my fingers.
That’s sort of the funny thing about parenthood. You enter into it and immediately take on the belief that you must leave your things at the door. Your love of drinking an entire cup of coffee while it’s still hot, reading the newspaper, hearing yourself think. Never again, until the kids have been dropped off in their college dorms, will we enjoy a slow, easy Sunday morning. We believe that to be true and, thus, make no effort to change it. That’s just the way it is in this life of a parent.
But it’s not true.
Earlier this year, we made a resolution to have more date nights. As in, once per month. We asked our Miss N to be our babysitter and she not only agreed but also has rather consistently checked in each month and helped make sure that we will make it happen. Two people can’t always make sure a date night happens but three? It definitely increases the odds.
So we scheduled and planned. We didn’t force ourselves to get fancy and go someplace big. More often than not we’d end up at our favorite wine bar, the one that doubles as a hipster coffee joint, which was just our speed. But by 9pm, we’d be yawning and trying to figure out how to stay out a little bit longer, feeling like we had to in order to make the whole thing worth it. Date night is incredibly important and something that we need as a couple, now with small children, more than ever. But it wasn’t working for us.
Knowing us as she does, Miss N pointed out that she is just as often free in the morning as she is at night. And date morning was born.
Yesterday morning we sat and lingered over cappuccinos. We strolled around that same open air market. And we capped it all off with mimosas while lazily gazing out across the river. We stayed out from breakfast until after lunch and we soaked in every minute of our date. We talked and not just about the kids. We talked about the things that normally stream through our heads as we are making our way into the day but rarely have the time to share. I’m not swearing off of date night just yet. But I’m loving date morning.