One evening we decided to take a family walk around our neighborhood. So all 7 of us, (yes, we’ve become one of those families that includes our dog in the number count) hit the sidewalks to go “exploring” or better known to mom as “getting out of the house!!”. The kids were running to keep up with the dog and chattering away. My husband and I walked behind the brood, making sure no one was running out into the street or messing with someone’s lawn ornaments. He took my hand and I realized something… when was the last time we held hands?? It actually felt kinda strange. I’m used to hands in mine that are much smaller and usually pulling me in another direction. But a hand larger than mine, simply holding mine because they wanted to… what’s this??
As we walked I asked him, “Do you ever feel like we’re just…. “eh” as a couple? Cause sometimes I feel like I’m so busy wrangling the kids, keeping the house together, I don’t have anything left for anyone else.” His response, “Yeah, I do. Let’s face it, we are getting each others leftovers right now.”… I have to honest. I had two reactions to this response. First I was frustrated that that’s how it is right now. Second, I was relieved that I’m not the only one feeling this way. It was almost like, “Hey, I’m not the only one that’s totally overwhelmed with parenthood and can’t seem to find any energy beyond that!”
It’s amazing to me that ANYONE keeps a marriage together after raising kids! They take so much out of you! Life can be full of conversations that start but never get completed because a fight needs broken up, quiet times that are interrupted by that child coming down the stairs who SHOULD be sleeping, the date nights that don’t happen because you can’t find a sitter… the list goes on!
Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband! But sometimes I can go an entire day or more and not have a complete conversation with him… we wave at each other over the dinner table, bump into each other in the middle of the night or find ourselves prisoners in a mini van with 4 monsters (we created, mind you) in the back!
Like everything, I’m guessing it’s a season.. a time in our life when this is just how it is. A time when you just pull up your boot straps and keep at it. Taking those small moments to look at each other and say, ‘What the heck? Are you as exhausted as I am?”… A wink across the table, holding hands on a walk, a text that says, ‘I love you”,… small things that somehow have a BIG impact in a life overdosed on the every day stuff. This is the approach I’m taking. We don’t have money or energy for the BIG stuff unfortunately… But I think we’ll be ok. I can imagine that in the next season of life, we’ll look at each other and say, “Hey, you look familiar to me, wanna go out on a date?”… 😉