Thursday, September 27, 2012
Making Time For Each Other
I feel strong enough about this subject that I wanted to inject my thoughts into my wife’s blog. We have triplets – infant triplets, no less – and that makes our life like organized chaos at times. There are schedules and routines. The babies require a lot of attention. Georgia, Mickey, and Jolynne are absolute treasures and I love doing everything with them. One of the best feelings in the world is when I walk into the nursery in the morning and they are all awake (talking to each other and happy) when suddenly they realize Dad is there…and they all grin ear to ear. The babies do take a lot of energy out of you and there are times at night when I am so exhausted all I want to do is sit in a chair and not think/do/say anything. Honestly, the physical exhaustion reminds me of being at West Point and trying to find pockets of time when I didn’t have to go do anything. Those moments were crucial to staying sane. Those are the times, though, when I try to do things for my wife. I will often rub her feet (ok, sometimes she has to ask me); I try to ensure the house is cleaned up, dishes are put away, laundry done, and formula made so she doesn’t have to worry about it; and I try to make her feel attractive because she is so incredibly amazing in every way.
We recently went across the country with everyone and had a ton of help. It was quite a bit of fun and we were able to create memories that will endure the rest of our lives. We were able to take the babies to the beach a few times and spend a lot of time together. However, there were also commitments for us without the babies. My wonderful mother-in-law was sweet enough to come to Florida with us and watched the babies so we could visit with the bride/groom at their house (we went there specifically for their wedding – Kara being the Matron of Honor). We were able to go on a dinner cruise for the rehearsal dinner. My parents came in that night to also help with the babies and spend time with us. Saturday night I went to the wedding with Linda (my mother-in-law) and we joined Kara who was already there. That’s three nights essentially without the babies. It isn’t easy and would not have been possible without three grandparents and my sister (Ryan) joining us. Yet, incredibly, I still get asked by people how we’re able to do those things. Really? I didn’t realize it was a secret but here goes…It takes planning and work, but I don’t believe our “To-Do” list is only the babies.
It has become almost cliché for couples who become parents to suddenly stop doing all the things they used to do together before kids. To a large extent it is true. Kara and I used to go out to eat literally every Friday night. There are lots of little things we could do that are simply not an option when you have kids. We understood that going into this adventure and we firmly believe the babies are the absolute number one thing in the world to us. But do you know what #2 is? It is my wife…and our marriage. I believe our marriage is important enough that we need to still make time for each other. I enjoy having 20 minutes of uninterrupted conversation each day…I like having long conversations with her every week. With good planning and a solid support system, we like to occasionally have overnights by ourselves every few months. It is also part of our plan to have a few weekends to ourselves every year.
I didn’t get married for just for heck of it…I didn’t get married because of any pressures to do so…I didn’t get married for any reason other than the fact that I think Kara is the most unbelievable woman I had ever met (and still is) and I couldn’t imagine my life without her. I plan to keep making her know that, any chance I can. And that is going to occasionally mean the babies will be with someone else so we can spend time together just the two of us. In the long-run, our marriage will be healthier and stronger…which will lead to happier times at home and happier babies/kids/teenagers. So I guess the short answer to the question of how do parents of infant triplets get out of the house and go do stuff together is this: we make it a priority and utilize the wonderful family/support network we are fortunate to have. No secret formula to it…planning and committing to it. So for everyone reading this blog, whether you have kids or not (or whether your kids are grown up and not there every day) – whatever the situation happens to be – make time for your significant other. I do…and will continue to do so.