17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Don't I know you from somewhere?

Unfortunately this is a line I often utter to my DH since Baby T was born. Ugh, how to find time together post baby? I have no idea how people do it with many, many babies. Maybe it's the onset of Valentine's Day, or perhaps that our anniversary is approaching towards the end of the month, but I am dying for connected DH time.

Now nursing has kept us from getting away for a weekend, and an empty wallet has kept us from getting a babysitter every week. Don't get me wrong, since the baby was born we have made it a priority to spend quality time together - just the two of us. We've had friends watch T and occasionally hired a babysitter for the evening. Unfortunately we don't have family that lives nearby. I think we've done a pretty good job at having date nights. But what I'm getting at aren't the times when you leave the baby and go out for the night. That's easier. I know how to connect with DH when it's just the two of us... when we slip away and seem to be (for at least a few hours) the "old us". But what about the new us? How do you connect to your DH on a daily basis? When babies are around, or when they are sleeping? When money is tight or no babysitters are in sight? What are some sweet things that you do for your DH to keep romance alive when it's hard to ignore the spit-up stain on your sweater, the pile of laundry in the bedroom, not to mention his list of to-dos for work? Give up your secrets and help inspire some wives & mothers out there to find some QT with DH.


  • I still do a lot of the little things I used to do before our baby joined the fun. Slip little notes into his pocket, put his favorite candy into his computer bag, make a yummy dinner, or play Dr. Mario or scrabble. Probably not super romantic and maybe even a little cheesey, but it's "us". For me, keeping up a strong friendship with him is key.
    Also whipping out old pics from when we dated or our life before L - our son likes to look at pics of us and video and it is a cool reminder of how much we love each other, how much we enjoy each other and how because of all that we have L in our lives.
    posted by Blogger Melissa at 1/18/2007 08:42:00 PM  

  • We stay up late together... watching movies, making stuff (we like to paint-rooms,furniture, etc) for the house, doing OTHER things.. ;)Hey, having a tired morning is all worth it if you have accoplished somthing fun, worthwhile, etc...the night before.

    We also never stay mad at the other for anything. Forgive, forget, and give eachother a break!
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 1/18/2007 10:19:00 PM  

  • One of the many reasons I fell in love with my DH was because of how much fun we had together. He could make me laugh and giggle like a little girl again. So one of the things we still do post kids is play together. Whether it's a game of hide and go seek with Googie, or a board game with friends. We consider it a good month when we get out of the house on a real date.

    It takes a while to get used to having a new baby, trying to find your groove with them. But once both of you do things get easier. Finding quality time together doesn't have to be alone, and for me doing things as a family turns out to be just as romantic a lot of the time.

    Now the intimate part, that's slightly harder. Especially with a nursing baby that would rather sleep in your bed. After Googie we didn't really get back into our rhythym until she was almost a year old . . . and got pregnant with number two, 2 months later. Oops :)
    posted by Anonymous Trivial Mom at 1/19/2007 07:43:00 AM  

  • Those "young children" years are hard to be sure! I often felt totally ripped off that during the years you need money (and a big home) to raise the children it is so inconveniently lacking. I sadly admit that my husband and I probably just endured those years more than we made the most of them. We had many years together before kids so we looked at it more as a time of personal growth--he did career stuff and traveled a lot, and I did the stay-at-home-mom stuff and connected with women friends. I think it takes a little while to settle into the "new you" and the relationship does change. But I'm happy to admit that it is better than I could have ever dreamed. I think it has to do with the principle of work. It was a hard several years--for a lot of reasons: he was sorting out his career which required a lot of his time, I was settling into mommyhood and trying to make friends, we had infertility issues so just getting kids was difficult (not mention then having them), and of course all the reasons you mentioned... It was really hard! So what we've built is hard won and all ours. We treasure every single dissconnected moment because it showed us how wonderful and full marriage can be (in an opposite sorta way). And really we only remember the good times now (your post just brought back some of the difficult times--and for that I'm grateful because I can see just how far we've come!).
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 1/19/2007 09:36:00 AM  

  • Date night for us is hard. We have a lot of commitments to our callings and our kids, so we just find ways to connect after the kiddies go to bed. Even if it's just sitting by each other as we work on different things. Or watching our favorite TV shows or movies.

    And I'll tell you, nothing turns me on more than to see my husband spending time with our children, whether it's daddy/daughter dates, playing Mario Party with them, or showing our son how to make cool things out of legos.

    The thing is, you might not be able to "connect" with your husband on a daily basis. Some days will suck. And some days will be great. Romance doesn't have to be about everyday, nor does it have to be about perfection. Heck, sometimes it's just romantic when DH makes sure I get a shower in the morning.

    Children change everything. EVERYTHING. Nothing will ever be the same again. However, it doesn't have to be "worse" or "bad" like some couples think it is --just tweak the perspective a little and I'm sure you will see that "romance" can be defined a little differently.
    Good luck! :)
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 1/19/2007 11:12:00 AM  

  • Beth,

    I think you are not alone in this feeling. My dh often works long hours. A week can go by with hardly more than 5 minutes of conversation a day (that's when work is at it's worst). That's when I really feel like saying "Don't I know you from somewhere?"

    We like to send e-mails to each other during the day. I know, so romantic. But it does help us stay connected without me worrying about catching him at a bad time or him calling in the middle of a child meltdown.

    And starting our new mountain bike hobby has been fun as well. We can do it with the kids or sometimes we try to get a babysitter so we can go by ourselves.

    I do think as kids get older, it can get easier and harder to connect. The older my girls get, the more I feel like it's a fight to get "Daddy's attention" when he is home. It's hard to even have a short conversation without getting interrupted - something that we are working on.
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 1/19/2007 03:15:00 PM  

  • I try to go out once a week to my husband's office so we can get lunch together sometimes I get a sitter and other times its the whole family, but its nice to have something to look forward to during the week....plus its usually cheaper than going out to dinner
    posted by Blogger trimama at 1/19/2007 03:25:00 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
    posted by Blogger Beth at 1/19/2007 04:46:00 PM  

  • Melissa - I love that you leave little notes for DH. I need to do more of that. Very thoughtful.

    Rachel H - DH and I also stay up late together. Sometimes I think that my morning would run smoother if I went to bed at a reasonable hour, but when DH doesn't come home sometimes until 11pm, it's hard not to wait up.

    Trivial Mom - I think that is a great idea to play games together (with or without kids). Sometimes it's hard to turn of the TV at night and do something like that, but it's really worth it when you do.

    Anon - "We treasure every single dissconnected moment because it showed us how wonderful and full marriage can be (in an opposite sorta way)"... I like that idea.

    Cheryl - I totally get that we won't connect everyday. I just wanna make sure I don't use that as an excuse to be lazy about putting effort into being more thoughtful.

    Carrie - I like the email thing actually. Very sweet.

    trimama - Visiting at the office is a great idea.

    One thing I really like to do is every once in a while shop at this little gourmet grocery store down the street (but you could obviously go to any grocery store) and buy some different foods - bread, cheese, fruit, olives, yummy dessert & drinks - and once Baby T is in bed DH and I have a picnic in the living room. Very nice.
    posted by Blogger Beth at 1/19/2007 04:48:00 PM  

  • My DH came up with a phrase about keeping time for eachother--he wants to "protect our time" together. So, each evening when it's our time, it better be something IMPORTANT if it's going to keep us apart. We had some pretty busy and hectic times and now that we've moved and are "starting anew" so to speak, we are trying to place a higher value on our time together. Cutting down on pointless TV or internet has helped. We've been doing home-improvements together, and just relaxing more. But church callings just came...HT, VT assignments ... aaaaa! But that's another topic! So, though it can be hard, we're trying to protect our time and have fun with it. :) Keeps our relationship closer and happier, that's for sure.
    posted by Blogger Katie at 1/20/2007 08:21:00 PM  

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