I remember a time when I left a restaurant arm in arm with my husband. Maybe he'd have his arm around my shoulders, or he'd be guiding me with his hand against the small of my back. I'd be looking up at him, smiling or laughing at one of his goofy comments. He'd open my car door and tuck me safely inside; I'd wait for him to take his seat beside me. It was just the two of us.
And then there's tonight. When we left Texas Roadhouse, me ten feet in front of him trying to keep Little Mister from running off toward the car, him with an armful of Little Miss and the birthday presents from the evening. I opened the passenger side sliding door and helped Little Mister into his seat. Daddy opened the opposite door and buckled Little Miss.
Life is so very different now than it was 4 years ago. Blissfully happy, but almost unrecognizably different. We just fit together, my husband and I, we worked. Now we're like a well-oiled machine. We have to be, but the mechanic evenings that we have sometimes... No, there's no real room for spontaneity. Not like there used to be. The kids have us running in seventeen directions, leaving little time for simply smiling up into his face.
But I suppose I'll have that back soon enough. Before long, we'll be missing the craziness that is our life right now. Before long, we'll walk arm in arm from restaurants behind a group of kids too old to want to run off into the street. I'll let him open the car door for me because we won't have to help the little one into their seats. And we'll miss the days when we had to put so much effort into keeping control of our life.