Falling BACK in Love with Your Spouse

Linda Sharpby Linda Sharp

Valentine's Day is just around the corner, and as most women, you know what my thoughts have turned towards. CHOCOLATE. A big, heart shaped, bow festooned box full of luscious, filled, chewy, creamy, nougat centered . . .What? Oh, well, certainly I think about LOVE too. What's there not to LOVE about a two pound box of sin with my name on it? Ok, ok, yes I think about how I love my husband too. In fact, this year I probably love him even more than that anticipated gift of Godiva. Why you ask? Has he begun to put his underwear in the hamper instead of on the doorknobs? Has he been picking up items discarded on the floor instead of walking on top of them? Has he bought me some expensive diamond-y frivol? No. Simply put, over the past year, our children have been giving Rudy and I back to each other, and we have fallen in love all over again.
 
You all know how it is. You meet, you court, you are young, passionate, vibrant and alive. You are also the only two people in the scenario. You then get married, get pregnant, and bring forth a third person whose job it is to divide and conquer the two of you. How well I remember our first daughter's arrival. So caught up in learning about this tiny creature and how to care for her needs, OUR needs were put on the back burner. Exhausted from all nighters and nursing, we were almost like ships passing in the night. We would still acknowledge each other on the ocean, but passion, loving and communication were drowned in the wake of the S.S.

Screaming Baby.
When baby number two entered the scene, it only got worse. Our needs were not put on the back burner, they were shoved clear off the stove! With a toddler of 18 months and an infant, I was so tense, stressed, exhausted at the end of the day, I did not want to be looked at, talked to or even touched. What happened to the romance? What happened to the passion? I could barely remember the last time we really conversed, let alone really kissed each other. But onward we trudged through two years of poopy diapers, fevers, stress. And then, just as we thought there may be some light at the end of this tunnel, another train ran over another rabbit and we were pregnant again.

Now while our parenting skills had gotten much better and we were a lot more laid back about a new baby, our skills as an in-love couple were nowhere to be found. We have always LOVED each other, but something had happened to that IN LOVE part. The part that makes your heart race a little faster when he enters the room. The part that makes each other your "safe place" in the world. The part that just wants to leave a trail of clothes on the floor to the bedroom and . . . well, you get the point I'm making. And while we both desperately wanted to get back to that, there were always three little people in between us, and when measured in love miles, that's roughly 4,900,647.

As our youngest started nearing three, something began to happen. Our daughters were playing together more. The older two were including the youngest in their games, their dress-up, their make-believe. Suddenly, Rudy could come home and he and I would actually greet one another, the girls too busy to even acknowledge his presence. After dinner and homework, they would disappear to their rooms and play together till bedtime. What was happening? We weren't sure, but it was almost like a silent gift. Wordlessly they were saying, "Mommy and Daddy, we're ok. You can have each other back." It has been wonderful. We go on dates and there is a sparkle back in our eyes and a spark back in our hearts. We are not too tired to talk, to laugh, to . . .well, you know. And when I hear the garage door open at night?. My heart does beat a little faster. He might still leave his underwear in the wrong places, and walk on top of toys instead of picking them up, but that's ok. They say that "Love is blind". And after walking through the dark for so long, I am thrilled to have found the light of our love again and I am more blinded than I was

11 years ago. Happy Valentine's Day, Rudy.

Linda Sharp is an internationally published humorist who writes regularly on the joyous and frustrating world of parenting. Her work appears across the Internet and wraps around the globe in parenting publications from Canada to Malaysia.
Linda is co-creator of the award winning website,
Sanity Central — A Time Out From Parenting! Located at http://www.sanitycentral.com, it is totally irreverent, hysterical and packed with enough laughs to brighten even the weariest of parents! As a mother of three children (four if you count her husband), she firmly believes that laughter IS the best medicine. She may be reached via email at lsharp03@aol.com.