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.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

A Valentine

The first time my DH took care of Noe (now 4) by himself, I returned to find my precious newborn wrapped in a bath towel, with his diaper and onesie on backwards. It took every ounce of willpower to stay quiet. I clenched my teeth, grinned tight, and asked how his night had gone. And decided that I could never leave him alone with our baby again.

When I related the experience to my mom, she pointed out that Noe had been clean, changed and warm when I arrived home....did anything else really matter?

Of course she was right. An only child, my DH had no experience with babies and young children before he became a father. But he was determined to be an involved father and have a strong relationship with each of our children from the very start.

Four years and another child later, I have learned that when it comes to our boys MY WAY isn't the ONLY way, or always even the BEST way. Maybe when I come home from my part-time job (he watches the kids on those evenings), the boys are asleep in their play clothes. But I know they've gone to bed on time. Maybe their toys are still spread across the play room. But I know that he's been playing with them rather than watching TV.

He has a gentleness and patience with the boys that I envy. He wrangles the two of them on shopping trips much better than I do. The boys obey him when they often ignore me. He almost singlehandedly potty trained Noe in a matter of weeks....and trust me...it is no small feat potty training a 3-year-old with autism!

With all of my rants about "giving up a career for motherhood...", most of the time, I think I am the lucky one. I get to set my own schedule. I get to choose when and in what capacity I return to the workforce. I get the morning cuddles and goodnight kisses, while DH is either working or recovering from long nights in the newsroom. His time is not his own. When he isn't at work, he is expected to be helping with the kids, and he does so gladly, without resentment.

I can't remember the last time he picked up his guitar or called an old friend to chat. One of my New Year's Resolutions was to give DH more of the ME time I demand for myself. Just like a lot of my resolutions, this one has fallen to the wayside a bit. But on this Valentine's Day, this cheesy Hallmark holiday, I hope he knows how much I love and appreciate him. And what an amazing father he is to his two little boys!


  • Here here for the Husbands! I have felt the same desire to give my husband some of the "Me" time that I fairly regularly claim! I feel like the luckiest girl in the world, because not only is he a doting and loving father, he is the sweetest, most loyal, most complmentary man in the world. I could NEVER have a "bad hair day" to him. He treats me undeservingly well. What a blessing to have such good and wonderful spouses!
    posted by Blogger Rachel H at 2/14/2007 05:41:00 AM  

  • I woke up this morning to a dozen roses and a V-A-L-E-N-T-I-N-E scavenger hunt through my whole house... (each letter being a clue). I am so grateful for a loving, caring, romantic and compassionate husband. Jen, you r eally made me realize that I RARELY ever give him "me" time to do what he wants. He gives it to me freely so often. Hmmm.... I am feeling a golf gift certificate coming on for his Valentine's Day present! Thanks Jen...
    posted by Blogger BJHBHB at 2/14/2007 06:32:00 AM  

  • Such a sweet post Jen. Thank you for helping to remind me of all the little things. I think it really is easy for men's needs to get pushed to the wayside sometimes (they're not always great at expressing what those needs are, too.... at least not in the same way as women are). Yeah for husbands! They work so hard, and I often forget just how hard mine is working. And he could DEFINITELY use some "ME" time.

    Happy V Day!
    posted by Blogger Beth at 2/14/2007 08:38:00 AM  

  • Oh, Jen, you made me cry...

    This week has been so hard for us--we had our new baby and our other son had a terrible stomach flu. Dealing with that and having to take care of our 2 daughters as well as been hard. My DH has been up all night the last few nights with our 2 yr old while I've been up all night with our newborn, and yet everyday he jumps at the chance to make dinner or take the kids places. He's quick to clean up and to get me whatever I need.

    Your post just reminded me how much I love my husband, too. I truly married one of the best men out there, too, that's for sure!
    posted by Blogger Cheryl at 2/14/2007 12:12:00 PM  

  • Cheryl, what a week! Wow. Congrats on the new baby. Sounds like your hubby has been a great help through a trying time. Best wishes for sleep and less illness in your future!
    posted by Blogger marian at 2/14/2007 01:16:00 PM  

  • Wow, do I relate. I am constantly having to remind myself when I come home to a dirty house and children sleeping in their playclothes that I am lucky to have a husband who supports me and does his best to make sure our children are happy and safe. Thanks for the post!
    posted by Blogger Corinne at 2/14/2007 04:54:00 PM  

  • marian-
    Thank you! It's getting better; always does, right? :)
    posted by Blogger Cheryl at 2/14/2007 06:13:00 PM  

  • THanks for this great post Jen. Dh and I have been working to making sure we both get enough "Me" time and "We" time and "family time" and "one-on-one" time with each kid. It's not an easy task. There doen't seem to be enough time to go around.
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 2/15/2007 09:25:00 AM  

  • What a sweet post. It's nice to be reminded of all our loving husbands do for their families.
    posted by Blogger Melissa at 2/15/2007 11:06:00 AM  

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