Nate and I had a date night planned last night as a belated birthday celebration for him, since we were both a little too busy on his actual day to celebrate. Nate wanted to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (a movie that we both ended up absolutely hating, but – hey – we got to sit down for two hours, so it wasn’t all bad). 😉 And we had reservations for a restaurant that we’ve been wanting to eat at forever.
You guys, I was giddy with excitement all week long in anticipation. You’d think that instead of a night out, I was packing up my bathing suit and hopping onto a cruise ship for a trip to the Caribbean. I’m not even kidding, I woke up yesterday morning and jumped on top of Nate and exclaimed, “Our date day is here!!!”
I know, it sounds kind of sad. But welcome to the life of a mom with a toddler. I’m busy… I’m preggo… I’m broke… I don’t get out much. 😉
On a positive note, however, not being able to go out as often definitely has made me and Nate appreciate our date nights that much more. We definitely used to just eat out without giving it a second though. But now, with finances being what they are and life being so busy, the odds definitely aren’t in our favor when it comes to ‘going out’. We definitely appreciate – and maybe even enjoy – the romantic moments so much more.
One of my biggest fears before Brady was born was over how having a child would impact my relationship with Nate. We were in such a good place… We were loving life, traveling, experiencing new things all the time. We knew that it was all going to change… And it has. And honestly, as with every couple who steps into the role of parenthood for the first time, we struggled sometimes.
Our marriage was never in danger, or bad, or anything dire like that. But it definitely hit a bit of a rockier patch. We were just exhausted, tending to a newborn all day and all night. We couldn’t easily escape for ‘us time’, and there wasn’t even such a thing as a relaxing night’s sleep together. Brady would wake up once every two hours, so there was no release even at night.
We kind of just fell into survival mode and there definitely wasn’t the passion from before. And oftentimes, we’d fall asleep without saying “good night” or “I love you.” Kisses were oftentimes quick pecks before we’d crash in front of the television once Brady fell asleep, because doing anything else just required too much energy.
And as horrible as that might sound to a couple who’s scared of the same thing happening to them, it really wasn’t all that bad. It all happened just as gradually as it ended… It was us getting through an exhausting and extremely new experience together. Could we have done better at making each other feel special? Yes, I’m sure we could have. But at the same time, we made it through every single day together. And the way we had each other’s backs may have not been glamorous, but it was solid.
And we both learned how to better support the other, even if sometimes we did have to learn the hard way. (Ladies, don’t ever be afraid to tell your husband what you need help with. They really don’t have a clue sometimes. And I know you want them to ‘just know’, but save yourself tears and frustration. Just ask him for help). 🙂
As Brady has grown and slowly required a bit less supervision (and now regularly sleeps through the night), I can honestly say our marriage has slowly found a new normal. And we’re at such a good place again. The new normal doesn’t require the nights out as much as the old normal did. I mean, one day, when the kids are grown, I’m sure we’ll enjoy that kind of life again. 😉 But for now, we take advantage of the nights out that we do get. And we’ve found other ways to keep the ‘romance alive’ and to keep our marriage fun. We love watching movies together, or screaming at the TV over a game of football, or even silly things like belting out songs while we do the dishes.
I feel as though we’ve found a niche for our little family, and life just feels comfortable and good. Our marriage feels good. Really good.
Just in time for a newborn to arrive in May… 😉 But I’m not worried this time! Because I know that even if the beginning is a bit rocky, we’ll settle down and find smooth sailing ahead. We always will. 🙂