On Monday, my husband celebrated his 28th birthday.
In the days leading up to his big day, he bragged about being a young 28. He said he looked good — which he does — and he said he felt even better.
Well, I am three weeks shy of my 27th birthday, and I feel closer to 57.
The only young thing about me is my face. I have always been the adult mistaken for a kid. When I was playing Amateur Athletic Union basketball in high school, a lady once directed me toward the gym where the 12-year-olds were playing.
I was 17.
I am sure my 4-foot-11-inch stature has a lot to do with the mix up. And with a baby face, as many would call it, I should feel younger than I do. But I don’t. Recently, I made a list of things I felt contributed to the old lady in me.
• Giving birth to two children (both via C-section)
• Being a military wife
• Living in a city without family and friends
• Stubbornness and guilt
I blame the latter of the four. My husband and I attended a marriage class last summer. The instructor suggested every married couple set aside time for date nights. My husband and I laughed at the idea as we talked about not needing or even believing in such a thing. As we conversed, I hid the inner person in me who wanted to confess otherwise.
And when I thought back to the last time I felt young, it was before we moved to Omaha. Before Saturday, my husband and I had only been on two date nights since moving here.
We have lived here nearly three years.
More than just an address change, it has been a lifestyle change. My husband and I, who were parents before we moved here, always made time for date nights. We didn’t call it by that name, but that’s what we did. We saw every new movie at the theater. We went to comedy shows, lounges and out to dinner frequently.
But since moving here, with no family also known as free babysitters, we shifted our focus solely to parenting. When co-workers or others insisted we find alone time, we were too stubborn to even flirt with the idea. And with careers that force us to put our children in daycare every weekday, I felt bad for wanting to send them to a sitter’s on weekends.
But this past weekend, I pushed aside stubbornness and guilt as I searched for the 26-year-old young woman in me. I hired a babysitter. I bought tickets to a show at the Funny Bone Comedy Club. And on Saturday, my husband and I went out alone.
Aside from the 20 or so times I checked my phone to see if the babysitter was calling, we had an amazing night. For a second, I thought I saw the 26-year-old in me laugh at a joke. While my husband and I cannot afford to pay a babysitter $36 or spend more than $100 on a comedy show and dinner every week, we can do this once a month.
And just maybe, the 57-year-old in me will wait 30 more years before resurfacing!
Tunette Powell is married with two children. You can read her every Tuesday on momaha.com
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