This week’s Ordinary Moments is in part inspired by Laura from Five Little Doves’ recent post I’m Sorry if I Fooled You (which is a must read by the way). Her post tells the story behind some of her instagram photos and this week I feel like I need to do the same with one of mine too. Because I think we all know, if you dig a little deeper or tell a bit more of a story, there’s much more to a photo than its first appearance.
I sent LPD a text at 4pm saying ‘If I feed Pickle his dinner a bit earlier, and fill a flask up with tea, do you fancy a stroll around the lake as soon as you get home?’ He said yes. And we did just that. And even though it rained a little bit, it was bloody lovely. Cup of tea outside: bliss. Bring on the family camping adventures this summer!
I wasn’t lying: it really was a lovely midweek evening treat and one I’d definitely want to do again, and hopefully with more frequency now the nights are getting lighter. But what I didn’t share was what had prompted me to do this in the first place.
It seems I don’t suffer from Mom-guilt as much as I suffer from Wife-guilt. I have very easily and naturally gotten myself into the habit of putting Pickle’s needs and requirements ahead of my husband’s. And I feel totally justified in this as let’s be honest, Pickle is only a baby and he can’t fulfill his own needs in the way that an adult can, but every now and then, it hits me with how much I’ve neglected investing into our marriage. We’ve only had two date nights since Pickle was born, and one of those I wouldn’t really count as a proper date night as we spent most of the evening with my parents – although our wedding anniversary is upcoming so we do have another future date night planned.
As I’ve been breastfeeding, I’ve found it more difficult to ‘get away’ for the evening than I thought I would. Sometimes, the thought of not only have to organise a babysitter but also expressing milk beforehand like some kind of dairy cow is really off-putting. BUT I know I need to make more of an effort. An effort to make sure as well as being parents together, we can find the time to just be us. Enjoy time together the way we used to. To take the time to see the qualities we love in each other. To appreciate the things that make us unique. To laugh.
All too often, after the rigmarole of bedtime routine, we sit exhausted on the sofas (not even together on the same one, but sat on adjacent sofas), mindlessly watching a bit of TV or scrolling through News Feeds on our phones. Too tired to make more of an effort. Too beaten by the day for anything more. Too anxious for when the next cries from upstairs will come to settle for long in case of interruption. Night after night.
So this was me trying to make more of an effort. It wasn’t a full blown date night because, let’s be honest, we can’t afford to do the whole meal out/cinema thing as much as I’d obviously like, but it was fresh air, time to chat about our respective days and a chance to walk hand in hand. A chance to rekindle. To reconnect. And to just focus on the two of us. And it really was lovely.
Carie @ Space for the Butterflies
We’ve been in the same boat for many a year – three breastfed babies and no family around to babysit, the eldest was 5 before we managed a date night, but an effort never needs to be big things – for us it can be as little as getting up to get something from the kitchen when the other has just sat down, it all makes a difference. Your cup of tea walk looks amazing – and yes, roll on the summer, we’ve got some camping adventures of our own planned!
Sarah | Boo Roo and Tigger Too
It’s so easy to plough efforts into the children and forget about your partner from time to time. Just makes the time you do have together more special.
All the love for this post. I read Laura’s yesterday and it totally resonated, don’t beat yourself up – we all do it. In fact it took me 4.5 years and a friends seperation to make us realise we needed time for each other. We now have a husband-wife weekend every quarter to reconnect x #TheOrdinaryMoments
That’s such a lovely thing to do. It is so hard to get time as a couple after little ones, I’m still breastfeeding at night and it can take up to 90 mins to settle him to sleep so we end up having about 30 mins as a couple before I give in and say I’m too tired and going to bed. Definitely going to make more of an effort x #ordinarymoments
I really really really understand where you are coming from. And I can say, I think loads of other parents do too. We may read of perfect family moments all over the place, but when we actually look at how complicated it can be, there is no way we can have things just so. With that in mind, the days, or evenings, or the hour we actually do get to have “off”, are the moments that make all the difference. I was out all day Friday, and Mr Jen had texted me while I was on the train coming back, and asked if I wanted to go for drinks. A rare night off for him. I would have loved to have popped my new Julian MacDonald top on, dusted off the heels and gone for cocktails, but I was just too bushed. Instead we had chinese, and fell asleep on the sofa supposedly watching a film we wanted to see. Hardly romantic or a treat, but at least we did it together.
Musings of a tired mummy...zzz...
Great that you found time for each other, even the little things matter!
Laura | Little Ladies Big World
It isn’t really important to remember each other isn’t it? But really hard too, a cuppa outside without big expectations of date night sounds perfect to me x
Katy - Hot Pink Wellingtons
I totally understand this. I think in those years when your children are young it’s inevitable that your relationship takes a bit of a knock. But I think it’s the little things like this that are so important to show your partner that you do care, and you do want to make the effort. I’m so glad you found that time together to reconnect – and you’ve reminded me that I probably need to do the same with my husband!
Totally agree with this post – it is so easy to forget about each other as a couple when you have small children to look after who require all of your attention! Spending time together doesn’t always have to be an expensive night out, a peaceful walk sounds just as lovely 🙂 xx
Five little doves
Aww thank you for the mention, that’s so lovely of you. I think we are all guilty of this. When I met Gaz I had a 6 year old son so we never really had much time for just us to begin with, and then throw in three children in two years and before you know it five years have passed and our lives are crazy and hectic and focused solely around the children. Sometimes Gaz comes home from work and I don’t even look up, I’m cooking the tea, dealing with clothes mountain, wiping up a spillage and helping lewis with his homework. And we have definitely become stuck in a rut, one which is so hard to get out of. We are trying to make more of an effort to spend time just the two of us, but it’s hard when money is tight and babysitters are sparse! One day when the children are grown we will have all the time in the world for meals out and weekends away, but for now I’ll make do with a takeaway and a film together, and if he’s very lucky an early night. Hehe. Fab post lovely. Xxx
I guess breast feeding can be really restricting in terms of going out etc but your right you deserve some time out my lovely x
Rhiannon-Skye A Boden
This sounds like such a lovely evening, and well deserved as well! Now the evenings are getting lighter I’m trying hard to get out and about more, as it’s really easy to stay looking at a screen all day!
Fashion and Style Police
Awww what a lovely post. I bet many wives suffer from this guilt especially when the kids show up.
I am a coffee drinker, but there is just something about drinking coffee from a flask, outdoors that makes it taste so much better! Its so hard isn’t it, to have quality time once you have children in the mix. I thought it would get easier when the children got a little older, but they need help in different ways, like homework, reading and projects. I find when I am free, he is helping one of the others so evenings are our only time together and with the kids getting older they are being pushed back a bit too! Lovely post, and a good reminder, I might try and surprise my oh and kids with an evening walk after work xx
I loved this post. It’s so important to make the time whenever you can – and I do love a nice cup of tea! x
Good idea. I’m going to make sure we do have some time each week that is just us an no distractions. Getting out of the house is a great idea. Hope my resolve holds! I might need reminding!
I think because when they are so little they need 100% of our care and attention we just get used to giving that and it’s to forget as they get a little older that we can divide our time up a little more fairly throughout the family.
Enjoy your anniversary xx