I'm going out for dinner with my husband tonight. Just the two of us. And while every cynic out there is bemoaning the obviousness (is that a word?) of this Hallmark holiday, I, personally, am thrilled to have a half decent excuse to spend a bit of time alone with the man I love.
I realised last night that the last time Shane and I went out for dinner, on our own, was last March when we celebrated our second wedding anniversary (and my mom was conveniently visiting for a few nights). Before that was New Years Eve 2010 (Shane's folks whisked Ezra off to a braai with friends and we were left at a loose end). And before that, it was the night I was admitted into hospital to have Ezra's birth induced. Three evenings to ourselves in two years. Pretty dismal, right?
We were in Cape Town a couple of weeks ago and managed to fit in a few hours (between me freaking out on the cable car ride up Table Mountain and me turning green on a boat out to Seal Island - Shane & Ezra loved both completely) of visiting with a school friend of Shane's who has recently fathered twin boys. These little munchkins, all of four months old, spend every Wednesday night in the company of a local midwife whilst their parents go out for drinks, dinner, movies - whatever they want, actually. They kindly offered to include Ezra in the babysitting programme so we could join them for a few hours of adult company. I said no. Not because I didn't want to go, but because our boy would, in all likeliness, simply not cope. Not because he's a ninny, but because I've just never really put him in that sort of situation before.
I've got to admit, I felt like a bit of a fraud having all this angst over my almost-two-year-old's welfare in the face of two cheerful and clearly thriving infants. The reality is, however, that we don't really have a support structure here that includes friendly neighbours or midwives or grandparents that offer to spend a night in our home while we going skipping off on our own. Our parents are all very keen but live far enough away that it would have to be a special occasion to ask them to get involved.
Chorina, our maid / domestic worker / char / nanny / whatever-the-correct-term-is, lives with us from Monday to Friday. It would seem logical to ask her to babysit, since she is a person that Ezra knows well, and who, conveniently, is on the premises when we want to be out. I struggle with the fact that she is not particularly maternal in dealing with him. Not that she is in any way unkind, she just doesn't seem all that interested in him, as a person. I don't know if that's exactly what the issue is, I just don't really have a sense of him being cared for by her, although she does everything she is expected to. This could, of course, simply be paranoia or delusional parenting at work. We're leaving Ezra with her tonight, and we'll see how it goes. I'd love to have a standing arrangement to get out once a month with Shane, particularly if our plans to increase our family this year come to fruition.
If you're wondering where I've been or why I haven't been blogging, I've been here, watching, waiting. I'm getting my daily work / mother / work / cook / work / eat / veg / sleep routine sorted out, I'm making time for myself. I'm making time to be energetic for myself. So, out with the excuses, in with me and my 2012.