We’re going away this weekend. Just the 2 of you, everyone asks? Mais non. I just got my fulltime mom life back–I’m not giving my baby up for a night. However, while this is a family trip, Sky and I are super excited about this weekend for us as a couple. Can we talk for a few about marriage, relationship, baby, work, how to make it all fit into a life?
Everyone said, and we prepared ourselves for it, that having a babe is intense on a relationship. And sure, that’s true. We have been rightly obsessed with our child. As much as we promise not to talk about schedules and feeding and what’s next in her development on those few dates that we have, we of course end up talking about how much we love her which leads to talking about schedules and sleep and childcare and all of it. And Luciana doesn’t sleep through the night yet (the sleep topic is a separate post and one I can’t wait to talk about) and when I was working she ended up in our bed most nights because 1)she went to sleep so much faster and mama needed every wink she could get and 2) we love it. WE LOVE IT. There is nothing sweeter than waking up next to her little face. And we know this isn’t something we want to do forever, and in fact the time is coming really soon where it won’t be happening much at all, and yes, some could argue we’re putting hard-to-break habits in place, but I’ll say it again: we love it and she loves it and it’s just what we’ve chosen to do during this time. All that to say that our time as a couple has been extremely extremely limited–even our time as co-parents. We had one day off together in January and February.
So everyone said this would happen, and we were onboard til I’d say the end of February when it just started to hurt both of us how little we were seeing each other. This is more a function of both of us working really hard for those two months than anything. I see now that if I was working full time all the time and wanting to be with our daughter as much as I do, it would take some serious discipline and scheduling to find time for each other. We didn’t do much of that because we knew it was finite: my work had a definitive end date and Luciana’s wellbeing came first, so it was 1)Luciana 2)our jobs 3)ourselves 4)time for each other. Would gurus tell us to put ourselves first, relationship second, baby third and job fourth? Probably. And I am here to tell you that all the knowledge of what you SHOULD do is lovely; then the moment comes and you make your decisions. I am so proud of us as a family over the last bit of time. And the only way we could have done it is, again, that we knew it was temporary (til Mama does another play).
But I miss Sky. A lot. And he misses me. A whole lot. What I’ve noticed about myself, too, is that when suddenly we’re fending for ourselves, it’s easy to fall into patterns that maybe aren’t so great. For me, when I’m busy and have a lot going on I can get distant. And a little critical. And hung up on the little things. I’ve always been that way. It gets harder and harder for me to open up—I get used to being on my own, or in this case on my own or with Luciana, but where I haven’t been is intimately talking with and connecting with my husband. So in that first moment that we have to be quiet together, I don’t jump with readiness; it takes me a bit to come out of my shell. That resistance to intimacy is something I’ve worked on a lot, but that doesn’t mean it’s gone entirely. Sky and I know that for both of us it’s so important that we don’t go long stretches without connecting because it’s not always fun clawing our way back to togetherness. We went a really long stretch. And I’ve been a little withdrawn. We both know it and it’s OK but it’s not where we’re our best. Obviously.
Sky and I are not alone or unusual in that getting away makes getting back in sync with each other a lot simpler. He’s not sucked into work and I’m not sucked into laundry and cleaning the garage. But I can’t just show up in Santa Barbara and assume that’s the only missing piece. There’s that commitment to connecting that I know is vital. It is my full and 100% intention this weekend to be present and open to my husband and our relationship, and also to the experience of parenting together. Maybe we can talk more about our hearts and less about how much Luciana is eating. Maybe we can daydream instead of remind ourselves we need to hire a CPA. Maybe, in the midst of being more grown-up than we’ve ever been with our travel crib and baby spoons and nap schedule and super-moderate alcohol intake, we can have a few days where we play like kids and channel the carefree versions of ourselves. We have this gorgeous ball of light called our daughter to remind us how life is not about the logistics, though wow, do we act like it is sometimes.
us, figuratively anyway