Saturday, January 20, 2007

Five Reasons to Keep Dating


Well, we were practically kid-less last night. Dustin ended up spending the night at Steven's and Savanna at Molly's. Larry said, "let's go on a date." So we did! Jordan played Guitar Hero while we were gone and then we came home after our date and watched American Idol with him. (We always Tivo.)

 We laughed ourselves silly. At one point I laughed until I cried. I wonder sometimes, "If I couldn't sing, would I still find these people funny?" It just boggles my mind that they do not know they can't sing. I mean, I know I can't play softball to save my life. I'm terrible at it as I am with most team sports. I like things like skating, dancing, aerobics, walking, biking, etc. to stay in shape. But I have zippo talent as far as team sports. Trust me, if you are playing sports, you do not want me on your team. I was always the last one picked in gym and there is a good reason why. Do not try to patronize me, don't think you are doing me any favors by including me. Just give me a chili dog and a coke and let me sit on the side and watch YOU play, and I'll be happy as can be. So will you, believe me. So I know this about myself. Why don't these people know THEY CANNOT SING???!!! It baffles me.

While on our date Larry and I talked about favorite dates we've had over the years and our favorite places to go. And we made plans of a lot more things we want to do in the future. Here are five reasons I think it's important to date:

1) Dating was something you did to get your spouse in the first place, and a means by which you got to know them. Why stop? It just stands to reason it will continue to help you in building the relationship.

2) Dating creates an atmosphere that is conducive to sharing and talking about things (provided you don't always go to the movies...I always say regular dating shouldn't always just be a movie because you aren't interacting, you are both focusing completely on something else besides each other for 2 hours. But I think a movie as part of a date is good, just not the whole thing.) Even if you don't have money to do dinner and a movie, it's good to do the movie, then go somewhere quiet and spend some time together talking (and whatever else you want to do!) before going home.

3) Dating shows that you still prioritize one another. It takes a lot of work to plan a date if you have kids. Of course sometimes it just works out that the kids are not home, such as it did last night. However most times, that's not the way it is. The majority of times it takes a lot of planning to have the evening to yourselves. For many it's just easier to give up than plan all the child care arrangements. I know, I went through that for years. When we would have a sitter cancel at the last minute I would cry my eyes out because we just needed time together and hardly ever got a break. Most times I was just hanging on for that date and looking forward to it for a whole week, sometimes more. Anybody who plans and perseveres through sitters canceling, quitting, tight finances and all that -- is committed to their marriage. Dating when you have kids in the home says, "Yes, it's stressful to plan around all this, but I care enough about you to do that. You are my priority." 

4) Dating helps you to remember - you are not just Mom and Dad. You are husband and wife, Mr. and Mrs. (Rev. and Rev. in our case as well!) Dating helps you to not lose your identity as a couple.

5) Dating helps you to focus on your goals as a couple. Part of our dates is always discussing future goals and dreams, sometimes individual, sometimes as a couple. We might talk about our next ministry goal, or our next house project.

Do you get the picture that I think dating is important? More on this in future blogs...

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