Leading up to Liam being born, everyone told me how it gets hard to focus on each other and how it was important to continue to date your husband. Well duh, of course we were going to do that! We’d make time for date night at least every other week if not once a week, still go out and be social and be cool parents! Right? Wrong!
We had great intentions but let’s be real, life gets in the way. The newborn days are rough and while we did have our first date night 2 weeks after Liam was born, it lasted maybe an hour before my mother-in-law called and said Liam was getting hungry (he was exclusively breastfed at this point) and we needed to come home. But, it was something and that’s what counts.
Before you have kids, it is just you and your spouse. You have the luxury of being spontaneous and going away at the drop of a hat or heading to a festival around town for hours on end. But once a baby is thrown in the mix, you have to think about nap time, if you need to pump, will there be anywhere you can change a diaper, etc. and it makes your previous lifestyle seem rather cumbersome. Almost a year (can someone explain to me how that’s possible?!) into parenthood, I now understand why everyone tells you how important it is to make time for each other. After all, your marriage is the reason you have that beautiful baby/babies. Without each other, there is no family unit.
I frequently catch myself telling Tyler that sometimes it feels like we are just two ships passing in the night. We both work full-time so after we get home we get into our routine of dinner, cleaning up dinner, a bit of playtime before bath and the bedtime routine and then watching a few TV shows and/or blog work for me and some work for him on our respective computers and then lights out. All to just wake up and do the same thing the next day. While some routine is inevitable, it is imperative to a healthy marriage to invest back into your relationship and break out of that rut so that, whenever your kids are out of the house, you don’t look at each other and realize you hardly know each other anymore.
If we are overdue for a date night, I have noticed that we start bickering more frequently which ultimately causes us to feel more like roommates than husband and wife. But once we have some time to refocus on being Ryan and Tyler the couple and not Mom and Dad, we automatically fall back into sync and get back to our “normal”.
This past weekend Tyler and I went on our first weekend getaway since Liam was born. Which, for me, was the first time I had spent even one night away from Liam let alone two in a row. While we missed him like crazy, it was more than necessary for he and I to have some one-on-one time together to reconnect and refocus on our relationship. Or as he would say, to “rekindle our love.” After a weekend away, we were more than ready to get home to our little guy feeling refreshed and recharged but like better parents because we invested that time in ourselves.
So, regardless of your circumstance, always make time for your spouse. Your kids will thank you for it, your spouse will love you for it and your marriage will be stronger than ever!