I get it, date night is important. But I honestly can't remember the last time my husband and I went on one. We've just never been able to make it a priority, especially in the six years since we've had kids. And honestly, as a parent of little ones, date night just doesn't make much sense to me.
By the time I get to the end of the day, having survived a 5-year-old, a 3-year-old, and a 1-year-old, and cleaned up Magna-tiles and crushed Cheerios for the 17th time, the actual last thing I want to do is get dressed and leave the house. What I want even less is to return home far past my usual tuck-in time, which is perfectly selected to ensure I get enough sleep to survive again the next day. And as much as I love eating a meal that wasn't thought of, shopped for, prepared, and cleaned up by yours truly, I sincerely do not want to go to dinner.
Nope, I do not want to put on real clothes and makeup for the first time at 7 p.m. I want to put on another pair of pants with a stretchy waist band, retie my messy bun, pour a glass of wine, and zone out in front of the TV while simultaneously catching up on Instagram. I want be in my house to enjoy the precious hours of quiet that only occur after bedtime. So yeah: sorry, date night.
But, I get it: spending time with your partner connecting and having real, uninterrupted conversations is important, especially after you have kids. Enter: the day date!
The day date solves all your dinner date problems. It doesn't begin at the exact moment at the end of the day when every ounce of energy, excitement, and affection you have has already been sucked from your body. It doesn't force you to calculate how the distance to your destination and the time of your reservation will affect your precious sleep schedule. It doesn't risk last-minute cancellation due to work meetings that run long or unforeseen public transit issues. Nope, the day date is perfect (assuming you can squeeze it in between weekend soccer games).
It occurs at a time when you haven't yet been beaten down, worn out, touched out, or frustrated by little humans. You are wide-eyed and perhaps even still optimistic about the day ahead. It happens while your kids are awake, and their wild antics, constant snacking, and never-ending messes are someone else's problem.
You are free from yet another trip to the park and unchained from the burden of wiping down the high chair once more. While your kids are bothering the babysitter with their never-ending needs, you are wide awake, enjoying all that daylight has to offer. Brunch! Hiking! Wine tasting! The possibilities are endless.
With day dates you can return — if just for a few hours — to your pre-baby glory days. The ones where you used to go for a leisurely brunch and then see where the afternoon took you. You can drink your coffee while it's still warm and finish your mimosa before someone spills it on the floor. You can catch a movie and be pretty sure you won't fall asleep in the theater. You can go to a baseball game or spend the morning getting spa treatments. The bright, daylight hours are your oyster.
And the bonus is, the excitement and connection (and maybe cocktail) you feel during the midday outing often lingers well into the night — even after you've returned home to your little monsters.