Marriage and Babies

I’ve always heard that being a parent is a full-time job…  But can we just all pause a moment and agree on the fact that this doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface?  I mean, let’s face it, even the most time-consuming of careers allow for sick days or a vacation here or there.  Parenthood, on the other hand, is more like full-time breathing.  Calm and even-paced at times; maybe a bit more ‘I’m-running-a-marathon’ type at others.  😉

But it is 24/7.

That’s probably one of the toughest adjustments for new parents.  For me, every stage has gotten easier, because Brady becomes more independent.  (And his sleeping through the night doesn’t hurt things either).  😉  But during those first few months (and even maybe through the the first year), you’re tired.  Tired ALL the time.  You’re figuring things out.

And you’re needed.  Needed ALL the time.

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You’re giving so much that sometimes you don’t feel as though there’s anything left to give.  It’s really easy to lose focus.  Because all the baby books, and the attention from family, and the never-ending articles are centered around one thing:  your beautiful baby.

It is ridiculously easy to get frustrated with each other when things go wrong.  To find excuses as to why you don’t have time to cuddle, talk, laugh, or be intimate.  To be condescending when the other does things differently than you would do.

But that is when a tough stretch for a marriage takes a turn towards the dangerous.  When you forget that your love came first.  And that your love needs to always come first.

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I firmly believe that a safe, loving home for a child begins when they see just how fiercely their parents love each other.  And respect each other.

Respect is huge.

Brady is only two, and some of these goals that Nate and I hold close have already been tested.  But it is always our main focus.  We make sure Brady sees us hug and kiss.  We never disrespect the other or talk down the other to him (this includes sarcasm).  If Daddy or Mommy says ‘no’, than the significant other backs them up.  And just as important as we view quality time with our little guy, we treasure our quality time together.  Although it doesn’t happen enough, it is a priority for us (whether it’s our monthly date night out or even just putting aside social media and playing a game / snuggling on the couch to watch a movie together).

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I have to say that as Brady gets older, especially over these past few months, I find Nate and I slipping back into some of the comfortable routines we once held.  Or maybe our  new efforts to make time for each other, despite the craziness of parenthood, are starting to feel familiar.  Whatever the reason, it’s an incredible feeling.

With another baby on the way, we fully realize that things are about to jump back into unfamiliar, and exhausting, territory.  But I have to say that – this time around –  I’m not worried about how a baby will affect our marriage.  I’m really not.  I know that things will be tougher for awhile, but I also know that we’ll get through it together.  That we’ll make time for precious moments…

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And that we’ll only grow more and more in love during the entire process.

Of course, we have to make sure that we keep our priorities straight!  🙂  And what better way to keep our focus right than to go on a one-night Babymoon?  (Babymoon post coming next…).  🙂

 

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7 thoughts on “Marriage and Babies

  1. I so identify with this post! I’ve watched so many couples just leave their marriage in the dust when their first child arrived. I’ve actually heard someone say that their child is their life now, with no regard for their husband. I also agree with always putting your marriage first. After all, it’s what will be left when the kids leave! With our first child, I was very nervous as well, but now I have 2 postpartum experiences under my belt, I know it will be rough for a few months, but we’ll get back to being ourselves eventually. 🙂

    • I saw a Facebook post the other day that broke my heart… A mom basically admitted to everyone reading that she doesn’t feel as though she has any love left to give her husband, because she gives so much to her kids. I understand the exhaustion at times and that the romance isn’t there every day (especially on the tough days). But I just felt her giving in, and it really did make me so sad for her. It really can be easy to lose focus and to think the kids always have to come first, but – like you said – when the kids are gone, you and your husband are left looking at each other. Your love started the journey of parenthood, and I think it’s so important to keep each other a number one priority.
      Like you said, the beginning months are rough. But if you hold on and keep your priorities right, things really do settle back to where they should be. 🙂 And I truly believe that the kids are happier for it!

  2. I read a quote one time that was something along the lines of a family only being as strong as it’s two founding members. ie: mom and dad. It’s so good for kids to see mom and dad as a united front and affectionate and in love. Definitely worth prioritizing! Good reminder!

  3. I love this! You know that this is definitely something that is on my mind as Christopher and I are welcoming our first daughter into our family this year. We’re so excited about it, but also definitely having lots of conversations about what we want our relationship to look like after baby arrives. Love this post!

    • As you already know, I thought about it a lot too when I was nearing the end of my pregnancy with Brady. It is scary, especially when all you’ve known is just the two of you. When things are going so great, it’s completely normal to fear something that’s going to bring such a huge change. I definitely found that marriage took more work (more determination and planning to make time for the fun), BUT Nate and I did make it through stronger than ever before. And now we’re settling back into an easy stage, right before things get crazy again. 😉 But it really does turn out amazing in the end if you keep your love a priority. There will probably be rough days, but communication and understanding is key. You and Christopher will do GREAT!! 🙂

  4. This is such a great post! You are so right that it can be very challenging to put your marriage first (especially in the exhausting times) but I really don’t know that there is another option if you want a marriage that will last. You guys are doing such a great job keeping your priorities where they should be. I love that you mentioned things like even just finding a few minutes together (putting social media away). It seems like many parents seem to think that we don’t have the time for our spouse, but could spend an hour on facebook without thinking twice. This was a great reminder to keep your spouse as your priority.

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