Each year, our family of four writes down their New Year’s resolutions. They are then tucked together into a sealed envelope for opening the following year. We don’t share them with one another and only seem to acknowledge aloud the ones to which we stayed true.
When I ask Swenny about his, he always tells me what they are, and while some could belong to anyone – to get a better job, to save money, to eat better – two are unique to him. To be a better husband. To take Cher on more dates.
Over the years, Swenny and I have gone out together less and less to the point where we never spent time together as a couple. When I would ask if he’d like to go to a movie, the answer was always no. Would he like to go for a walk? No. Dinner? No. To look at Christmas lights? No.
Why? Because he didn’t want me to smell alcohol on him. So I stopped asking. We entered into an existence of two people who were losing interest in each other and couldn’t be bothered to recall what it was they once enjoyed about being together. We let years pass by sitting on adjacent chairs watching Friday turn into Saturday and then into Sunday. Letting August carry us to September, October, and November, and noting that 2009 had become 2016.
While we can’t reclaim that time, we can begin anew. Encouraged by his continued sobriety, I asked my husband for a date. His answer? Yes.
So on Friday night, we browsed galleries at our city’s art museum, walked among the crowds of others who like us, were out, and stopped by the local public market to pick up dinner to make at home afterwards. We talked about art, our amazing city, and the price of fresh water perch.
We laughed. And felt like a couple once again.