weddingWednesday, June 30 marked 2 years since our fabulous Mexico wedding. Normally we don’t make big deals about birthdays and anniversaries around here. Ever since the morning of my 11th birthday, when I didn’t wake up with my heart pounding out of my chest like I usually did on my big day—from then on, I’ve had a more laid back approach to birthdays and anniversaries. The way I see it, I’m a day older than the day before, and I have a new number to try to remember. (If you were to put pressure on me to answer for a prize, quick, how long I’ve been married or how old am I, I might panic a little and lose whatever it is you’re offering. I’m sweating a little just thinking about your countdown.)

Anyhow, in preparation for our anniversary, the week before we talked about what we might do. We were thinking possibly we’d have someone watch Wally Ben and we’d go out to dinner.

The day of our anniversary we woke up, exchanged cards, had a nice breakfast in bed of omelets and chocolate chip banana bread, made by Wally Ben with a little help from his mom, and then we worked. (I work from home, and one day a week my mom comes to watch Wally Ben all day so I can get a full day in. That was my full day that week.) My mom insisted that we should do dinner and an actual date. She offered to take Wally Ben for the night.

When she offered, I immediately turned her down. No, thanks—husband Wally and I both felt sad about it. We’d have fun on our date, but when we came home and the baby wasn’t sleeping upstairs, the house would feel empty. I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep without one last peek at the monitor. At night, when I rolled over, I was sure I’d feel the emptiness across the hall. And worst of all—in the morning, when he didn’t make his usually meeps, peeps, and coughs to wake me up, I’d likely cry. Sob even. No, we didn’t think the payoff of an actual date would be worth how sad we’d feel.

But the next few hours whenever I’d think about it, I started to come around to some of the perks: a real actual date where we could stay out as late as we wanted; a practice run for the many days in the future when Wally V would spend the night somewhere; and my first time sleeping in as late as I wanted since October 27, 2009. And seriously, Mollie, get a grip on yourself. It’s not like you’re sending him off to baby boot camp (Is there such a thing? Do they teach how to ask nicely for your food and how not to go after every dog toy and wire in sight? Appealing…). He’s not going to baby prison to wear a little black and white striped romper (Aw, cute!) and have hard boiled egg eating challenges. Or worse, in his mind—he’s not going on a 24 hour car ride with no entertainment or breaks or bottles to pass the time. He’s spending the night at Mama D and Gramps’s house, who are super fun and will take great care of him and have a whole new set of toys, and new toys are always a bonus after spending 2 minutes at a time with all of your toys all day every day, rinse and repeat.

So I came around, and I started to work on Wally IV. And it was a difficult sell! He kept saying, “I’ll miss Wally Ben too much,” and “I’ll be too sad,” and I kept saying, “But just think, you get to spend time with me, your wife, remember me?” And he said, “But Wally…” And I convinced him, I think, with a, “Believe me, I’m not that bad.”

After a drawn out goodbye, with lots of kisses and hugs, and Wally Ben saying, “Get out of here already, dudes, I want to go on my first overnight,” my mom pulled away with Wally Ben.

Wally and I jumped in the car. (No, not the car with Wally Ben and Mama D. A separate car. Come on, we were dramatic about him leaving, but we didn’t go chasing him down the driveway and out the neighborhood, for goodness sake!)

We looked at each other, and said, Now, what do couples do? We figured we had to eat, so our easy decision was to try a new, classy sushi restaurant that was 20 minutes away. (Usually we stay in a 5-10 minute radius to keep the car rides short for the little man.) Then we enjoyed each other’s stimulating conversation about—believe it or not—more than Wally Ben. And we ate slowly, paying attention to our own food, and enjoying every bite (no baby spoons, dropped toys, one-handed eating with the other hand holding a bottle).

After dinner, we both agreed the date was going well, so we should continue. We thought back to the days of yore, and remembered at some point we enjoyed shopping together. We went to DSW, and Wally picked out some cute shoes for me for my birthday present (my birthday was June 4, and Wally wanted to shop with me since it’s hard to buy shoes without having the feet present to try them on. See what I mean about birthdays not being that big of deal to us?). We found the shoes right away, but did a few extra laps around the store browsing, just because we could. (Lingering is a major luxury—who would have thought?)

We then thought again—what do couples do? And mini-golf came to mind. We took on Congo River’s 18 hole course, and Wally really enjoyed it, as he beat me by 6 strokes. He hung the scoresheet on the fridge when we got home to preserve the memory of his big win. (For an idea of how competitive my husband is, yesterday I told Wally Ben, “Don’t ever be a sore loser.” Husband Wally finished the lesson with, “Just win every time and you won’t have to worry about it.”)

Our date was so date-ish. (We even stopped at the door, looked at eachother, and awkwardly said, “That was fun, we should do that again sometime.” “I’d like that.”) I think we both remembered that we were fun people to hang around with—the other person, and some self-realization also. It was a feeling like, hey, I’m dateable. I can hold his hand now because I feel like it. He’s a funny guy, and I can make him laugh, too. It’s not like those feelings had ever gone away—don’t get me wrong. It’s just not as easy to take a moment to reflect on those things—to pause the moment and actually think about them as they happen—when you’ve got a little human being who’s yours and you both love and who needs your attention.

And I was surprised how solidly I slept. I talked to a friend at work a few days later who pointed out that this is a common parenting experience. You sleep better when the baby isn’t in the other room because you don’t feel on call, like this little person may need you any second. In the morning, I slept in until 8:20. To use one of Wally Ben’s favorite words: Wow! (Cue big smile from Wally Ben.)

So, yay to actually celebrating our 2 year anniversary. Yay to my husband. And yay to how much excitement we’ve had in our first two years: a beautiful beach wedding, a house, a pregnancy, and a pretty cool little baby who is currently working on his second hour of a great nap. Wow!

Privacy Preference Center