If you’ve been married, and especially if you lived together first, you know how stressful and insane the last 40 days and 40 nights before the wedding can be. I’m not writing about those today, although, let me just say, they were epically INSANE!
On June 1st, 2018 I married my Husband. I woke up that morning, virtually stress free, as crazy as that sounds. My amazing Mother-in-law that I gained from marrying this hunk set up a “waffle bar” with my new brother and his fiance, my new sister, that I also inherited. Everything kind of just went, not exactly according to plan, it never does, but we rolled with every hitch and misfire that came at us that day.
An hour and a half late, I was staged to leave my cabin door, with my three little men giving me away and my beautiful maid of honor helping me with my dress. All 4 of my babies walked toward this man that we were all marrying in a sense. He became their father and my husband in one fail swoop.
We said some things, my gorgeous sister in law read a beautiful reading, and cried lots of tears, and then we signed our marriage certificate.
40 days later……
We were fortunate enough to get our first 6 weeks to ourselves. (I say fortunate, but we missed our children dearly the entire time.) We had all these plans to do these great things every weekend, when is reality, we just soaked each other in and laid around the house.
We are a couple that spends 99% of our time with our children, we do things as a family more often than not and because of this, I don’t think we have ever gotten to know ourselves as a couple….until now.
Our last 40 days have been riddled with all kinds of emotions. The first 14-21 were mostly arguing. We missed the kids, my husband is a stay at home Dad, so without them he was kinda lost while I was at work. These weeks strengthened our relationship more than any other time in our entire 2 1/2 years.
We had to get to know each other, we had to understand who we were without four little monsters taking our time and attention 24/7. I looked in to our future, where would we be in 10 years when they were all grown and out of the house and we were left to ourselves?
Have you and your spouse ever asked yourself that question? Have you thought about it? I don’t think that this is something most of us think about until it happens. I have asked couples that have divorced after their kids left, why? The answer? They didn’t know how to be a couple without their children and lost their connection when they left.
I’ve been married before, and it didn’t work and I am bound and determined that I will die in bed at some ridiculously old age laying next to this man. So…..the journey began.
I realized those first couple weeks that we were having this exact issue, who were we without our children? I began to try to do more as a wife, cook more, cater more, really take care of my husband. Ask him what he was feeling, what he needed, when I would notice his mood low, but give him space when he looked like he needed it. In a time when I might have been able to completely slack off, because there weren’t children to take care of, I focused on my Husband….
I know Feminists, calm down.
It may sound like I became a servant, no that is not the case. I did start focusing more on him, all that energy I usually put towards our kids, was sent in his direction instead…and guess what ladies! His started coming to me, he started being interested in what I was doing, what I needed, how I felt. We went from arguing frequently that first few weeks, to living in bliss with each other 95% of our time.
We went and started doing things together, even little things like sunset walks at the river, or shopping trips, dinners at our favorite places and movies. We stopped arguing and discovered who WE were as a couple.
This is no longer a scary thought for me. I know that when our last child graduates high school and heads to college, that we will travel and experience a new type of life with each other. I also know that when my children return, that I will still cater to him, I will still direct that attention to detail towards him, and not only our kids. I believe as parents, we sometimes forget we are Husbands and Wives. I know up until this 6 week honeymoon without them, I had forgotten.
I also know that the more I dote upon my husband, the more he dotes upon me, it isn’t a one way street. It is a mutual respect and appreciation for each other. Love is not something that comes and stays easily, it is a choice to continue loving, continue working on it. Marriage is work, if you ask a couple married for 30-50 years, they are going to tell you that there were times that they had to CHOOSE to love, CHOOSE to stay, CHOOSE to work on it. Don’t forget that it is ok to be vulnerable and to show your spouse how much you care. We live in an age that vulnerability is not celebrated, but shamed. Be Vulnerable. Get to know each other as a couple.
I love you my readers! Let me know what you think about all this craziness.