Still Got It…Sort Of

I hinted last week about a plan to chase away my tears as I sent my baby (okay, five-and-a-half-year old) to his first day of Kindergarten.  My plan? Extra mascara and distraction.  Distraction has served me well at other times in my life when I have been unable or unwilling to face certain emotions.  (It could also be called “avoidance”, but that’s another therapy session blog post.)

I planned a “date day” with my husband so that instead of focusing on my “baby” growing up, I could look forward to a Monday not spent at work.  After we saw the kids safely to school, we would catch a movie and go to lunch at a real restaurant without a dollar menu and where water is not served in a paper cup.

Here’s how it went down.

My younger son pulled off his departure beautifully.  He showed the proper amount of “I’m gonna miss you” without the gut-wrenching clinging-to-my-leg bawling.  A quick hug and a tentative pause and he went off to explore the playground.  Of course, we hovered outside the gate until the classes lined up and filed into their classrooms.  An over-the-shoulder glance and a smile told me he would be okay.  My eyes watered, but technically I didn’t cry since my cheeks stayed mascara-free.

Ready to Learn...

With the kids safely at school, our date day began by seeing a ten o’clock showing of “The Change Up”.  It left me wishing I would have seen “The Smurfs” instead, but it at least we got out of the house.

Being the romantic couple that we are, we took a stroll after the movie…down the aisles of Wal Mart.  Our fingers brushed as we reached for the same item on the shelf.  Our shoulders touched as we contemplated whether the Velcro or sports band would be better for our younger son’s watch.  We both agreed “Velcro” and we knew…we were ready for lunch.

NYPD Pizza has reasonably priced lunch specials.  I got a slice of pizza and six garlic knots (buttered garlic bread rolls) for $3.99, while hubby ordered pizza and salad for a couple dollars more.  Since this was an ‘already-found-my-guy’ kind of date, I didn’t have to worry about the garlic scaring him away.

Our dating days began seventeen years ago, but have been dormant for the last nine years.  I was pleased to see that my husband remembered how to open the car door for me – like he used to do B.C. (before children.)  He also held my hand, like he did before we had to grab children’s hands to keep them from running off.

We enjoyed times of silence, neither of us feeling the need to clutter the empty space.  Long gone is the drive to make ourselves seem better than we are – we already know what we’ve got.  We use manners and still find small ways to impress.  Like today, we impressed each other by not wearing any pizza sauce.  Oh yeah, we’ve still got it.

Movie:    $10

Lunch:    $13 (with tip)

Surviving first day of Kindergarten together:     Priceless

What do you and your significant other do for fun?  Do you have any inexpensive date ideas?  How do you keep life from draining the desire to date right out of you?

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22 thoughts on “Still Got It…Sort Of

  1. Tori Nelson August 16, 2011 / 6:31 AM

    My sister just sent her daughter to Kindergarten last week and she still won’t talk about it. It’s all too much! Glad you guys had a distraction plan in place!

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:02 PM

      It’s a traumatic experience, but one day, she might be able to speak of it, though it could take intensive therapy. I’m not unlike a small child…the distraction worked well. Ooh, shiny, pretty….

      Thanks for your comment, Tori!

  2. Carl D'Agostino August 16, 2011 / 6:46 AM

    Date? Hmmm. Well…er. Over to Wiki. Oh now I remember. They grow on palm trees and taste sweet. Right? Hey, I’m 62.

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:06 PM

      Okay, you made me laugh out loud, Carl! Oddly enough, now I’m thinking of fruit cakes….

  3. dorcas August 16, 2011 / 8:51 AM

    Wow Janna!!! Looks like your most dreaded day turned out pretty awesome .. 🙂

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:07 PM

      It was a good day, Dorcas! It was even better when I saw the big grin on his face after school. He wasn’t the least bit traumatized.

  4. crumbl August 16, 2011 / 9:35 AM

    I lack two things you have, JT … tenure (6 versus 17 years) and younger children (LRHG’s boys are 21 and 24). Always open doors, car or otherwise for LRHG, hold hands in public, hold her chair in restaurants, etc.

    We go dancing (and trust me, I know two dance steps … left and right), we go out for romantic dinners, we go away for romantic weekends. Inexpensive date? We go to the beach, take a picnic and our inflatable rafts, raft them together and “float our boats”, or we hang out on our balcony, soak up some sun and marguaritas and grill up a meal, or we cook something indoors if it’s cold or rainy and watch a movie snuggled in bed.

    I like to think all the time we spend together is a date. Some more extravagent, some more simple, all equally special.

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:22 PM

      You know two more dance steps than I do!

      We aren’t near a beach, but you’ve got some ideas that can work even with the kids around. I like your last sentiment. It’s a good way to think of time spent together…a way of thinking I should adopt.

      Thanks for sharing your inexpensive date ideas, Crumbl.

  5. Debbie August 16, 2011 / 10:27 AM

    Good for you and your hubby, Janna — planning something you haven’t enjoyed for a while (a daytime date) to take both your minds off something that won’t happen again (last son’s first day of kindergarten)! I’m a firm believer in parents making special time for each other, apart from their parenting times. After all, once the kids are out of the nest, who’s still gonna be there for you?

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:30 PM

      Good point, Debbie. It is so easy to forget about the inevitable future when the day-to-day stuff eats up all of our time.

      It helped out that our little guy had fun at school. No amount of distraction would’ve made me feel better if he came home crying 🙂

  6. nrhatch August 16, 2011 / 11:02 AM

    Glad you had a lovely date day with your hubbie.

    I keep my eyes peeled for FREE dates. This Friday, we’re going to a gallery opening for the Highwaymen ~ depression era painters.

    A Bluegrass Band will be playing. Refreshments will be served. We will hold hands. 😀

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:49 PM

      Sounds like a fun date, Nancy! Free makes it even more appealing 🙂 The holding hands will make it even more fun.

  7. chlost August 16, 2011 / 11:37 AM

    Going to a daytime movie on a WEEKDAY! That seems so……decadent. I would think it might feel similar to playing hookey from school.

    Great plan to get through an emotional day. Bet your son had a good day, too.

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:53 PM

      I never could’ve done it if I had called in sick, Chlost! It did feel a bit like I was skipping out. If only every Monday could be like that 🙂

      My son did have a wonderful day at school. He had three friends by the end of the first day and had no reluctance on day 2 either.

  8. Widdershins August 16, 2011 / 1:50 PM

    Great way to connect with the grown-up side of life again.

    • jannatwrites August 16, 2011 / 8:54 PM

      Yep, it was nice having a day to ourselves. We’ll have to steal some more time again soon 🙂

      Thanks for dropping by, Widdershins!

  9. deehsarsiavo August 17, 2011 / 5:38 AM

    Wow, you really made the best of a tough situation! Hope the little one had just as much fun on his first day? =)

    • jannatwrites August 17, 2011 / 10:33 PM

      Yeah, it was nice. Going back to work on Tuesday wasn’t nearly as nice, but that’s the consequences of “skipping” Monday 🙂

      The little big guy did have lots of fun – and he still is. I do hope his enthusiasm lasts. Thanks for stopping by, Deehsarsiavo.

  10. pattisj August 17, 2011 / 5:45 PM

    Glad your son had a good start to the school year. I’m also glad the two of you made the effort to spend the day together, and hope you’ll find the time to do more of that. We have an empty nest, so hubby and I have a weekly lunch date. And sometimes we’ll go somewhere like Panera or Schlotzsky’s for dinner–or for frozen yogurt, or a movie. Even a trip to Lowe’s now and then. Yep, once the birdies leave the nest, it’s just the two of you, so it’s good to keep in touch until then!

    • jannatwrites August 17, 2011 / 10:36 PM

      A weekly lunch date sounds like lots of fun, Patti. We’ve got many years before our nest is empty, but I do pray that we still recognize each other when that time comes 🙂

  11. SAS Fiction Girl August 19, 2011 / 3:12 PM

    I think your First-Day-of-Kindergarten date with your husband was a great idea – I wouldn’t be surprised if this post got picked up and circulated around the mommy blogs.

  12. JannatWrites August 19, 2011 / 7:29 PM

    Thanks, Jen. It was fun to just hang out of a Monday. I don’t think I’m emotional over Kindergarten anymore. A week is done and no tears have fallen.

    Thanks for stopping by!

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