Every Marriage Struggles

Every Marriage Struggles

When I met my husband almost 8 years ago, we were both very different people. The main focus we had in our individual, but also couple life was recognition and pleasure.

At work, we both chased results, positioning, getting ahead and making more money. We wanted to be recognized for our intellectual capabilities and skills.
When at home, we were seeking ease and pleasure – going out to eat, drink or party, traveling, having sex just for the fun of it, shopping just for being out of the house or SLEEP IN just because we could.

We got together because we had many things in common, but also because we recognized in the other something to be admired and quite possibly an opportunity to become a better person. I was a shy introvert, my husband a bubbly extrovert. I loved how he could connect with strangers with so much ease and he loved I was a good listener who asked a lot of questions. We made a good team. You wanted to have us at your party. Weirdly enough, these are the exact same treats that drive us crazy about each other now.

Getting married didn’t change us much. We were doing pretty much the same thing, but feeling very grown up with rings on our fingers. I like to think that we were still “playing house”. I would cook lengthy meals and we would eat it at a fully set table with candles. I was still buying lace and planning sexy moves. We had impromptu travels to exotic places. This was the honeymoon of our lives.

But from the moment we started to have kids, boy-oh-boy, EVERYTHING changed.

Becoming a mother was the fastest, most sudden, soul-opening, brain-scattering crash course in personal development.

I had no idea of the depth of my resilience to pain until I gave birth. I haven’t experienced unconditionality and selfless service prior to caring for my newborn. I knew nothing about acceptance and patience until I had a toddler. And I had no idea that I could grow my heart three times with the purest form of love and adoration for the tiny humans who came out of me. I was also clueless about multitasking, guilt, and helplessness until I had 3 small children to care for.

Recognition and pleasure seem so far away, it is almost like it was somebody else’s life.

I didn’t lose myself in the process, I just transformed. Nothing was sexy. It was just tiredness.

My husband Steven went through a transformation of his own. He had become a father – responsibility to care for his new family was his new command center. Gone were the days of fun and care-free existence. He helplessly saw the woman he loved at the lowest of the lows of pain and despair without being able to do anything about it. He was now working out so he can keep up with running together with his very energetic kids. He watched parenting videos to help him understand tantrums (and hopefully girls).
He installed car seats and chose cars that were safer instead of faster. He held babies to sleep and went to bed exhausted only to wake up even more exhausted. He came home from work to chaos. Gone were the gourmet dinners at candlelight. He was lucky if there was any dinner – usually leftovers from the kids. Traveling was considered only if ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY and let’s not even bring up the lace. What’s lace?

We ceased to exist by our names and we became Mama and Papa. Or Honey and Honey.

But worst of all, our new common denominator was worry – we worried we didn’t feed the kids enough, or they were too hot or cold, or that their seatbelt was too tight, diaper too loose, starting school too early, tantrum management not respectful enough, boundaries not set firmly enough. We worried we will mess them up with our parenting style, which we had absolutely NOT figured out despite all the parenting books and videos. We WORRY ALL THE TIME! None of this is sexy. And none of it helps a marriage (re)find its groove.

For me, I just hope that somehow, while prioritizing our kids and worrying about them, we will still find each other delightful. Maybe different. Older. Wiser. But curious enough to see each other again as separate entities and like what we discover.

I have no advice to give. Just a reminder that

in the midst of this, it’s messy. For every.single.one.of.us.

It’s so tempting to feel this only happens to me. But the truth is that we all struggle.

The struggle is real. Common humanity baby!

Every Marriage Struggles 

Becoming a mother was the fastest, most sudden, soul-opening, brain-scattering crash course in personal development.

I didn’t lose myself in the process, I just transformed. Nothing was sexy. It was just tiredness.

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