This is what I was thinking, while my husband and I were drywalling last weekend. Not because drywalling is so much fun and makes me happy! Not at all. It wasn't the drywalling, trust me.
Let me paint the picture for you. We left our little ones with the grandparents for the weekend. When we woke up in the morning (with no children in our bed) we were laughing, we made jokes while getting ready in the bathroom. I said some comments I would never say around my children. My mommy hat was off! He grabbed me like we were dating again. After the morning giggles, I looked over at him and said, "Why is it that we are funnier when the kids are not around?".
He looked at me, a little alarmed at first, but then said something that made so much sense.
"It's not that we're funnier, we're just not focused on parenting right now. We are not pulling our kids off of each other, or rushing to get breakfast to table before a toddler meltdown".
This really got me thinking. Of course, I opened my laptop to hash out these feelings (leaving my husband alone downstairs with my father and drywall).
You see, he is so right. We are always focused on the kids, that we somehow keep loosing US and ourselves in the process. Parenting is such a selfless act and the job I am the most proud of. The reality is, when you stop caring and thinking about yourself and your own happiness, after awhile you start feeling a lot less fun and happy. That is compared to someone who is giving themselves alone time, self love, showers. LOL. All that good personal time. I find when days get hard, I am reminding myself that these babies are my life, that I want nothing more than to cuddle with them, pick up after them, sit beside them during the temper tantrums. I want all of it!
But, what about ME?
My husband and I used to workout everyday together, we used to cuddle on the couch before bed, we used to go out to the movies and have date nights all the time. Now I workout at 5am before the kids get up and he is lucky if he sneaks in a workout during the day, because after work, now equals "after school programs". We almost rush to bed once the kids are sleeping, because we know that our toddler will require water, a pee, lip chap, or another "rock a bye baby" after a bad dream about CATS in the middle of the night (don't ask). Date nights and movies got pushed aside to save money for lacrosse, hockey and special lunches at school.
So here we are hanging drywall and it somehow has turned into our own little STAYCATION!
See this is why they recommend couples to take TIME OUT. It's why they tell you to:
- Take a baby moon before your child comes.
- Have a parents only vacation.
- Make sure to lock down a date night, no matter what.
Do my husband and I think we are invincible? We rarely do any of these things. Mind you we are on a tight budget, so vacations are not an option, which is common for most parents these days. But that leads to excuses. It should not mean we can't afford time for each other. When did time cost anything?
(Side Note: Ask any parent out there juggling work, family, chores, activities etc...sleep is pretty valuable.. so I guess then, time does cost something)
Vanessa is way better at this than me. I have a million things going on in my life and in my head that I have to admit, I forget to take the "parent" out of Melissa sometimes.
So here is my new years resolution. I'm going to LOVE ME more and try to have more fun with my husband, which will allow us both to be better parents. While I am truly happy as a mom and I love my babies more than anything else in the world, I need to make more time for FUN! I think all of us moms need to make sure that we make time for FUN in our lives!!