We kept throwing out date ideas for Friday night (Valentines Day). The original plan was dinner at a fancy place nearby and a movie at the theater. But, I kind of hate the hassle of trying to get reservations on Valentines Day. We are both pretty low-key, low-maintenance, and low-expectations. I know, I know. So romantic! In the end, we changed out of our work clothes and stopped by Red Robin to use up some gift cards from Christmas.I'm such a cheap date!
After I politely declined my husband's offer that we go see Robocop (no thanks!), we just headed back home and watched three episodes of House of Cards Season 2 from the comfort of our own couch where I just may have worn some stretchy pants. In my book, this was a perfect date night.
Saturday we attended an event put on by my husband's work. He works for a large, well-known nonprofit organization. Last year, a couple of his coworkers formed a volunteer band and performed at an event for their work. Since then, they have had several requests to perform at other events. They practice once a week (at most) and perform at least one event a month. They are quite the motley group of band members but they are very talented.
Last night they performed at a "prom" for senior citizens. My husband invited me to come and be his groupie. It was the first time I had seen them perform and I was very impressed! And not just because I'm married to the bass player. The crowd was overwhelmingly 60+. But there were couples on that dance floor that out-danced me in every way! They could twist lower, go longer, and dance harder. When I had to take a rest because my knees started to hurt, I felt like the old one!
I'm slowly figuring out how to curl hair. It's only taken 29 years. That 's what happens when you grow up a tomboy. Cleavage brought to you by Special Bra! Toilet stall background brought to you by Fancy Bathroom!
Towards the end of the "prom" they had a contest to see which couple had been married/together the longest. The title went to an old Filipino couple who had been married over 50 years. They were crowned Prom King and Prom Queen and the crowd cleared the dance floor to let them have the next dance to themselves. Watching that sweet old couple slow dance around the room, white hair, stooped-backs, happy smiles, I shed a few tears. What a gift- to spend your life with the person you love. To share all the happy moments and the sad moments. To experience it all together and face life's unknowns side by side. To survive in a harsh environment, to embrace in the small pockets of warmth scattered throughout. Having the ability to believe that no matter what happens next in the mystery of time, you won't be alone.
That sweet old couple looked bent and withered and small. But I'm sure, to them, it felt like just years ago that they were young and immortal like us. How quickly time can turn the tables. In a blink of an eye, my husband and I will be in their shoes, wondering where our years have gone. It's hard to savor every moment, even when you are fully aware of how fleeting your time on earth truly is.
I kept gazing across the room at the man near the stage with a bass strapped across his chest. He is my partner. My best friend. Someone who I learn more about each day. Someone who is reliable but also capable of surprising. Our love started as infatuation. Materialism. But over the years, it has become so much more complex. Our commitments bind us together- kids, vows, mortgage, routine, convenience. But it's the intangible things (respect, understanding, patience, kindness, friendship) that make me look forward to spending every day of my remaining life with my husband.
Even though he had to play in the band, I figure out a way to sneak one slow-dance in with my guy. As 9pm rolled around, I was officially out of dancing commission but the seniors citizens were still going strong. Luckily the band stopped playing shortly thereafter and I made it safely home before turning into a pumpkin.
Still in a love-hangover, my husband and I picked up our kids this morning and spent the entire day making up for our two nights of freedom. We went to the gym as a family where I worked out (3.5 miles on the treadmill and a weights class) while the boys played in the pool. We ran errands and did chores the rest of the day while the kids played/fought with each other. Ryan is on a nap strike so that makes our afternoons/evenings....um, interesting.
Oh. And I