Two Under Two: Marriage Survive and Thrive Tips
Granted, we don’t fall quite under the “two under two” category anymore, but still thought there was some super useful information to share here..
It has been our greatest joy and our greatest challenge. And I don’t mean that in some whimsical way, it was actually pretty darn challenging to get to this point. Now we’re definitely stabilized, but it seems like the swaying factor will always be if the team is healthy. If one of the boys are sick, it definitely impacts our balance/is hard that someone needs to call into work.
Today, I wanted to share what Drew and I have learned during these 6 months. Our hope is that we could help other parents that are about to add another to their family.
Now more than ever, you need YOU time.
I cannot tell you how much better I understand this lesson the second time around. After Maxwell, I struggled to take time away for myself. I would rush home or worry about how Drew and Max were doing with me away.
THIS time around, I take it! I know Drew can now handle both little guys and I don’t jog to my Jeep after being away. I don’t text Drew and ask how it is going, I just ENJOY!
Do NOT resent when your partner takes it too.
I would say this is where I’ve improved the most in my relationship with Drew. I used to feel this resentment build when Drew was away doing his thing. By the time he came home, it would bubble over. I would say things like, “Well, I’ve been taking care of Maxwell all day…so you need to clean the kitchen or ___fill in the blank____.” Drew was SO sweet y’all. He would typically just do what I asked him to do. You know what I noticed? He did NOT treat me the same way when I got home from dinner with a girlfriend. He was kind and sweet. He asked about how it was.
After Trey, we both felt the demands of parenthood quell. Sure it is more demanding to be home with the two of them and have your partner enjoying some alone time, but we both KNOW we need it. 100% needed time to do the things that we love and enjoy, so we could bring the happiest and brightest version of ourselves home.
Now when Drew comes home, I’m excited to see him. I ask how it was, give him a big smooch and welcome him back into our full lives. It should be noted that both of us do jump right back into parenting after our breaks or days away.
Time for the two of us.
Now that I talked about taking individual time, it should be noted that we also make sure we have time as a couple. We sent the boys to daycare and had a whole day date on our anniversary. This summer, we’ll head to Colorado together for a long weekend. Whether it be just a dinner out or an entire weekend, we know that time just the two of us strengthens our marriage.
This is a life fact y’all. Talk to people kindly, especially the person that you love SO much. When is this NOT easy? When the day of parenting or work/parenting has been long! I’ll admit it: this sometimes takes effort. Effort not to say something off the cusp or rude. I know how/what I want to say and then I take a few deep breaths and deliver my words kindly. Drew is going to be much more receptive to a kind message than if I were to ask him to do something with a rude tone.
Work as a team.
Easy to say, but what does it look like? Tangible examples: Drew is the master of inventory. Each babe has never ran out of diapers a single time and there are always plenty of wipes. Drew always takes stock of what we have and then uses our every other week Costco run to make sure we have more of what we need. It has been A-FREAKING-MAZING to never have to worry about being out of diapers.
I do Max and Trey’s laundry. They always have clean clothes and what they need (sorry about the sock shortage last week babe ). I’m also Trey’s sole milk maker and responsible for pumping, cleaning the pump, storing milk, etc.
There are a lot of parenting tasks that we both tackle. Bath time, meals, picking up, daycare duty, etc. We’re flexible and both willing to chip in to make the household run the smoothest that it can right now.
However/whatever you split up is up to you and your partner, but I know that we thrive because we’re both willing to pitch in.
Just keep going.
If you are reading this and you currently have the newborn/toddler combo, know that we thought that period was very challenging. We tried to stay as positive as we could because we did feel beyond blessed to have another little person bless our lives. But, that is when the babe is the most demanding and the toddler is adjusting to having another little person take up mama and dada’s attention. PLUS, the lack of sleep is real.
STICK together during this time. Know that the baby will be more stable and will eventually sleep better. You’ll be much happier as a couple if you didn’t spend the newborn weeks being rude and keeping score of who did what.
This morning we’re having my friend Maria and her son Tavian come over. Having another adult around helps me immensely. We’re able to talk about adult things, the boys play together and it makes the days at home run smoother. You’re able to discuss parenting with someone other than your partner and that is helpful too!
A lot of times people ask me how I make mama friends. Well, if you haven’t noticed I’m pretty outgoing. So, I’ll definitely walk over to the neighbors house when they are outside playing and chat with the mama or dada. Thank God my neighbors are all nice and friendly. Now, I have their numbers and we invite each other to the park or other places.
GET OUTSIDE y’all. Kids and adults alike have much better moods if they are able to make it outside during the day.
Hope a tip or two finds you well.
originally posted on balancedames.com