"Mommy is Daddy's best friend.
Daddy is Mommy's best friend.
And Milo is my best friend"
Sometimes her story changes but usually I am everyone's best friend. At times I'm Daddy's, sometimes hers and sometimes Milo's. It depends on the day I suppose. I'm sure I can get an amen on this but as a mom, isn't it so hard to keep Daddy as your best friend when your energy levels for your kids have to be at their highest. During the day I chase after two kids, keep my business alive, keep the plants alive, cook, run errands, keep myself alive and clean, plan for the week that by the time the kids go to bed I crash. The moment they go to bed I feel like I can allow myself to own the tiredness that I can feel welling up within me. I'm exhausted, y'all. But then there stands my sweet husband wanting an ounce of my time and it's so hard to give.
Every night that I put Isla to bed (we take turns putting one or the other children to bed) it always ends in her begging me to stay by her side and me trying to teach her that she needs to let me have time with Daddy, that she has to share me. I am trying to teach her that everyone in our family is so important to me but that Daddy comes first. But as I'm teaching her that, I'm also trying to remind myself that Daddy comes first. That before there were kids there was him and me, best friends through it all. That without the him and I there would be no children and there would be no family unit. But gosh it's hard, isn't it?
How do you create an environment that gives your children what they need but also leaves room for your husband without giving him the scraps of your time? Scott and I discussed this last night and decided that we are useless come nighttime. He's been working all day and I'm exhausted and so the possibility of any meaningful time together in the evening is pretty much impossible despite our best efforts. Therefore, our plan is daytime. Have family watch the kids during the day, one day a week at least so that we can have some meaningful kid-free time together. We're trying to find a way around the catch that I feel so many of us with kids fall into with our spouses.
I have this vision of my husband and I being inseparable best friends taking on the world with laughter and love and joy. I have this vision of us finding fun in the mundane daily tasks and having that delight in life rub off on our children. I want my children to witness a happy marriage that practices putting each other first, healthy conflict resolution and a dependence on each other to have each other's backs. But how can we do this if what we give our husbands at the end of the day is the tiny portion of ourselves that is not used up earlier in the day. I know for me that that portion is incredibly small. I have nothing left in the evening.
This is a crazy learning curve right now and I certainly don't have answers! I just know that there are going to be some others of you reading this that completely get me and this is just our attempt at trial and error. Marriage with kids is hard. It's really hard. It's the best adventure ever but it comes with unexpected hardships but for the sake of our marriages we have to remember that before there was a 'we' there was an 'us'.