I found a new blog to follow, Scissortail Silk. In January, she posted an entry titled “To Wives: Before You Were ‘Mommy’” and it made me think.
My husband and I didn’t have a great deal of time as partners before our son was conceived; we moved very quickly from an us of two to an us of three. And I went right along with it. I adopted the role of “Mommy” and almost everything that came with it. I had grown up around children; I’m the second oldest grandchild out of 50 and counting. At family gatherings, there is always a baby cousin to coo over and hold. And Mommy was always something that I planned on, without or without husband.
I am the one who thinks about bedtimes, feeding times, things for our son to do. Are we going somewhere that he will be able to run around or will he be confined to his stroller, high chair, car seat, etc.? How long does it take to get there and how long will it take to get home? How late will we be out? How long will we be out? How many diapers do I need?
I am not perfect; I often forget a spare outfit; once, I forgot his juice cup. Sometimes, we forget that he should eat something, even if my husband and I aren’t hungry. But I try to cover all bases.
My husband is a bit different. He is more likely to think of the “two of us” than the “three of us.”
No finger pointing!
This is a good thing.
It means that he thinks of time for us as a couple and time for us as individuals. He is the one who gives me time to sit down and work on writing or photo books or whatever else I want to do with just a few moments. He is the one who remembers that sometimes, I need to get out of the house, even if it is 6 o’clock at night. He thinks about date nights and flirting and teasing and being “husband and wife” in addition to “daddy and mommy.”
Yes, occasionally, we step on each other’s toes. I think that he is not paying attention to our child’s needs and that he is putting our wants first. Sometimes, he believes that too much of my focus is centered on the baby rather than on myself and him. And we are both right. And we are both wrong.
We sort of balance each other out.
Because of my husband, I remember that I am “Partner,” “Wife,” “Helpmate,” and “Lover,” not just “Mommy.” And he picks up the role of “Daddy” in addition to “Husband,” “Breadwinner,” and “Friend.”
We might not have had a great deal of time before “mommy and daddy” but we do understand how to be “lovers and friends” in addition to our other titles.