Clothing optional

Photo of Sarah Badat Richardson with husband Burton Richardson
Hubby and I enjoying date night

I’m going on a date tonight. He’s handsome. 6 foot 1. Lean. Muscular. Jet black hair and hazel eyes. He has full pink lips, and great big hands. It was almost love at first sight and 19 years of marriage have not curbed the appeal. Lucky me.
We haven’t been out, just the two of us, in a long time; six months to be exact.
Last February, when my friends were visiting from Germany, we left our daughter with them at a hula show and stole one hour away to go have a Japanese dinner nearby.

Tonight our neighbors have taken on the babysitting duty. Their daughter and mine are good buddies and they are both looking forward to a special screening of the Wizard of Oz. We will have 4 hours to ourselves. Swoon…

We’re going to a new (to us) restaurant. A fancy one at the edge of Waikiki, with panoramic views of the Pacific ocean. I’ll be wearing a brand new outfit, complete with heels and jewelry (but probably still no make up) and he might actually wear pants and shoes, a stark contrast to his usual attire. Not that I don’t like his casual style but let’s face it, no fairy tale prince ever showed up in board shorts and flip flops.

We won’t even have to gulp when the bill comes as we’ll be using some gift cards we received last Christmas. I’m so excited.

My husband and I work together, workout together and generally spend a whole lot of time together but we still have to be mindful about staying connected. We may be in the same room but each busy with our own thing. We may both have breakfast, lunch and dinner at home but rarely at the same time. He goes to bed later at night, wakes up later in the morning and thus our stomachs are usually not in sync.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, he drives to Honolulu to teach classes and doesn’t come back until after my bedtime. On Wednesdays I’m off for my Mommy day alone.
Most of my mornings are dedicated to homeschooling our daughter.
A lot of his nights are spent video editing or writing.
If you add all the other stuff that make life: my hours in the office, cooking, cleaning, laundry, chauffeuring our daughter to activities and playdates, quality one on one time between husband and wife is a scarce commodity; something that requires deliberate planning.

It doesn’t always have to be high heels and a fancy meal.
Sometimes it takes ignoring the to do list of the day to just hang out together after we’ve dropped off the kid to science class.
Sometimes, it takes postponing doing the dishes to cuddle on the couch and watch a movie after we’ve put the kid to bed.
Sometimes, it takes using the TV as a babysitter to take advantage of a mighty fine hormonal day after we’ve locked ourselves in the bedroom. (Thou shall not waste perfectly good hormonal days).

Intimacy doesn’t just happen.
It must be cultivated.
It must be protected.
It requires creativity.
It requires intentionality.

Money is not essential.
Clothing is optional. 🙂

Next week’s essay is about my most recent trip to Australia. Subscribe using the widget below so you are notified when a new post goes live. Thank you for reading.

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