By: Justine Brooks Froelker
Think back to your wedding day or the day you publicly declared you were choosing one another.
What do you remember thinking?
For most of us, we dreamed of children in our future. We for sure did not dream of the struggle of infertility and loss throughout that dream.
However, I would also bet children were not the only reason you stood across from one another on that day and choose each other. On that day, you chose to do life with your spouse or partner. You chose to be the witness to their life.
I am willing to bet you did not choose each other to only procreate.
But I must ask, especially for those of us who have walked the road of infertility and loss, are you still choosing each other?
No matter what your life looks like now, the struggle to conceive, children, loss, and so much more, are you choosing each other?
Chapter 6 Reigniting the Spark is one of the most commented on chapters of my book Ever Upward. In the chapter I write about how I planned a whole year of dates for my husband Chad and me. I gave it to him as his Christmas present after our infertility and loss journey ended without our own children. I planned a date for every month of the year, tickets were purchased and dates chosen.
Four years later this is a tradition, albeit a priority, we still practice, although it looks a little different.
January is our annual at home wine tasting date. I purchase several bottles of wine under a certain price point and we do a blind tasting at home together over dinner. The idea is to find our favorite cheap bottle of wine for home. While we eat and drink we plan the year of dates ahead of us together.
No matter what is happening in life, that date will be observed and made a priority.
Sometimes life does get in the way and our date has to be a day of working in the yard together followed by dinner and our favorite show. Sometimes, your dates will have to incorporate real life. The difference between a real life day and that date though? You are actually truly present and engaged with your partner.
It is true quality time.
So whether it is something more extravagant like a nice dinner out before the symphony or a night in watching Netflix, we choose it together. We are present together. We are loving and choosing one another.
When is the last time you did that for your partner, for yourself?
If you need ideas feel free to follow me on social media as I post our monthly dates and I’d love to hear your ideas for a great date night!
About Justine Brooks Froelker
Hi! My name is Justine Brooks Froelker. In February 2011, my husband and I began our journey in the world of IVF. Gestational surrogacy was the safest way for us to have our children since I had two back surgeries in high school (including a year of my life spent in a body cast). IVF and 3 babies never to be born later, Ever Upward was conceived. After much mourning, confusion, anger and sadness, I got back up and started doing the work. The work to redefine; my life, myself, everything.
I live in Saint Louis, Missouri with my husband Chad and our three dogs Bosco, Gertie and Gracie. I enjoy spending my time with friends and family, practicing creative self-care, laughing my ass off (sometimes at myself) and building butterfly gardens on our acre of land, which has made me an accidental butterfly farmer.
Learn more about Justine’s story on her blog, Ever Upward.