Nick & I decided to celebrate our 4th wedding anniversary by going out on a date, sans Xander. It was a big deal. I’ve never left my little baby in the care of anyone else besides Nick. And even then, only for a couple hours while I went shopping or had my hair highlighted. I fretted over the ‘what ifs’ but ultimately decided that I needed to let go and trust my parents. They raised three kids, after all.
So, on July 5th at 7:20 pm, Nick and I said goodbye to Xander and walked out the door for our first date as parents. It wasn’t hard for Nick, but it was horribly hard for me even though I left my parents with a list of specific, flawless instructions (start bath at 8pm, put lotion & PJs on at 8:15pm, let baby kick on changing table till 8:30pm. Put to bed, cover with blanket, turn lights off, call Leigh when baby is asleep). We got in my Mom’s car, looked at the empty carseat in the backseat, sighed, and then looked at each other. Now what? Where should we go? Well, one of the closest restaurants to my parents’ house is Outback. So that is where we went. In the end, it was kinda a symbolic decision. In December 1999, we ate dinner at that exact restaurant for one of our first dates. We haven’t eaten at that location since, so there was some meaning behind our selection.
After the 1.5 mile drive to the restaurant, we walked in, and were immediately seated. I quickly took my cell phone out, double checked that the ringer was turned on, then set it on the table next to me. Nick reassured me, but I quickly demanded a cocktail to calm my anxiousness and the ‘what-if’ scenarios that were swirling in my head. After a couple sips of my sour apple martini, I relaxed and was able to have a great time (okay, I did sneak several glances at my cell to see if I had missed a call).
Our dinner was completed by 8:45 but still no call from my parents. I was worried so I had Nick call my Dad. My Dad reassured Nick, saying Xander had just fallen asleep after a happy evening with the grandparents. <insert a sigh of relief from me> In the end, Nick and I returned home after our less than 2 hour date feeling reenergized and satisfied. It was a big step for me- to trust someone else with the care of my son and to take time out for Nick and I. We needed it.