17 June 2011

What's date night?

Date night has pretty much been non-existent for us these past couple years. If I was to count the amount of times we've been out on our own since our daughter was born, it would probably fit on one hand.

I know how important it is to have time alone as a couple, but what do you do when you are stuck at home due to financial or babysitting issues? For us, its babysitting thats the issue. While my parents are happy to look after "Popette", its mainly Mum who does it as Dad is elderly and can't help too much. He also has health issues which makes it hard for him to put up with our daughter for a long period of time. Mum is in her late 60s, and while she does her best, she can't look after our daughter for too long either. An hour here or
there (especially during the day when shes awake), shes only too happy to look after her, but I don't like to take advantage of them. She's helped me out a lot these past few months with looking after "Popette" as I've had to go to various prenatal and ultrasound appointments. But I know once "Bubba" comes along, and there's two littlies to babysit, I don't think my parents will be too thrilled about taking care of a newborn and a nearly 3 year old all that much.

My husband's family live 5 hours away, so they've never been easily available to babysit for us. My older brothers both have 2 kids of there own, so I haven't bothered asking them to look after "Popette" for us. Friends from Mums group have offered, but I haven't wanted to burden them as most of them already have 2 littlies of their own, and Hubby is worried about hiring a babysitter....so where does that put us?

Most nights I sit in front of the TV, while Hubby's playing a game on the computer because hes not interested in what I'm watching. There's a couple shows he'll watch so we'll sit and watch them together, but apart from that we don't spend that much time together.
We try to have dinner with "Popette", otherwise it can get too late for us to eat when she goes to bed (which lately has been around 9pm) or we don't want to make too much noise in the kitchen.

Our conversations seem to revolve around our daughter, the baby, hubby's work, the household or money issues. At times we might talk about things we used to do as a couple or places we visited, but that seems a distant memory, which is quite sad. Sometimes I feel as though hubby and I have lost touch with each other, or are so wrapped up in being Mummy & Daddy we forget about ourselves, is that just me or is that normal when you become a parent!?

On a Friday or Saturday night we might hire a DVD, or watch a movie that's on TV...while eating some chocolate (can't forget the chocolate!!) If I wasn't pregnant there would be a bottle of wine thrown in there too!  But that seems to be about it for our 'date nights'.

We don't go out to the movies anymore, well not alone. We haven't been out for a proper 'date night' or gone out for dinner alone since November 2009....the reason I can remember this, as it was our 13th wedding anniversary. I remember us being so worried about leaving our daughter at home, but Mum reassured us that everything was going to be alright and for us to "Have a good time and don't worry".

The last time we went out as a couple was to see Bon Jovi in concert in December. My parents looked after "Popette" once again, but had a terrible time with her crying and screaming for Mummy & Daddy to come home. After that we felt guilty and thought we wouldn't put them through it again...but then that makes it hard for us to go anywhere or do anything.

Now with a 2nd bub on the way I worry that hubby and I won't get any time to ourselves or be able to find the time to rekindle our relationship. I know my husband loves me, but I do worry that our relationship is suffering.

So readers I ask you this question, what else can I do? Does anybody have any suggestions or ideas?

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