I had a really hard time writing this post, just because I’m kind of private when it comes to my marriage, I mean its not something you can talk to a lot of people about but, I want to be as transparent as I can with my journey as a wife and as a mother of 2 kids.
Finding a balance between these 2 important roles in my life hasn’t been easy, I’m still trying to adapt to life as a mother, and I also want to be able to dedicate some quality time to my hubby, after all were not just parents, we’re husband and wife, friends, lovers.
Personally I was at a point where I couldn’t even recognize myself anymore, I was always cranky, moody, playing the blame game and I just couldn’t do it anymore. Ever since we came to this country things have been different for us, specially the cultural differences. Back home (El Salvador), it is very accessible to have a housekeeper and a nanny, they don’t charge a lot and they live in your house. Here in the US we quickly learned that we had to do everything ourselves, and a full time housekeeper or nanny is definitely not something we can afford right now. So, we had to make some changes, and like I mentioned on my last post STAY AT HOME MOM DIARIES: HOW TO AVOID BURNING OUT I am now a stay home mom.
There’s no secret formula to find balance, for us it has been trial and error, and the following pointers are just some of the things that we have discussed as a couple to help each other become better!
Seriously?? Yes, seriously! I know this is common sense, but sometimes along the way of marriage we forget what is like to talk to each other, and no, I don’t mean talk as in; How was your day? Can you pass me the salt ? I mean talk really talk. It is very important that you find the time to sit down at least for a good 30 minutes and talk to each other, about life, your plans, your relationship. Is something bothering you ? Do you want to plan a family vacation ? Talk about it !! I find it so amazing when my hubby and I sit down on the floor or on the couch (after the kids are asleep) and we go back in time, to when we first met, or our first travel adventure etc. It’s a good dose of therapy and laughter.
2. PACE YOURSELF.
My hubby is constantly reminding about this … sometimes you might be all over the place trying to accomplish a million things at the same time. Don’t stress, if the bathroom mirror stays dirty one more day, everything will still be ok. The most important thing is to breathe and remember that no one functions properly when burned out. So try to sit down for 5 minutes and enjoy watching your kids create a mess around you. (lol)
3. CREATE A SCHEDULE.
Trust me, as annoying as it can be, having a schedule really works. We tried to avoid creating a chore/activity schedule but we just had to do it. I kept on getting frustrated because I was all over the place with my time, the kids, the house, and at the end of the day I had no time for my husband and this would create tension between us. We were so tired all the time the only thing we could think of was bedtime.
4. HAVE A DATE NIGHT.
I don’t know about you, but we have no family close by, so it’s really hard to find someone we can trust to take care of our kiddos, but! We need time for each other. It is very important that you have that special time with your spouse, even if its just for a few hours, but it’s just you and him, no toys, no strollers, no bottles.
5. NO CELPHONES, TABLETS OR TECHNOLOGY.
Ok, I am going to be 100% honest …. I am still learning how to let go of technology when I am around my kiddos or my husband, (specially since I am a blogger) It can be really cute to document every detail of your time together as a family but, be very careful, cellphones or tablets can take a LOT of your time, and you might be missing wonderful moments that won’t come back. Remember your husband and kids need you to fully be there for them, and viceversa. If you or your husband have a problem with this, it is very important that you express how you feel and help each other. Something that works is to leave cellphones or tablets behind in a basket when you’re going to eat or having family time. Don’t forget we’re setting the example for our kids!
6. DON’T LET FRUSTRATION TAKE OVER.
Sigh… Being a stay home mom can be frustrating sometimes, the kids, the crying, the chores etc. Time goes by so fast and you feel like you haven’t accomplished every single thing on your list, and then your hubby gets home and you start arguing and complaining etc etc. I understand being a stay home mom is a super hard, tiring 24/7 responsibility, but hey give your husband a break too! He’s been probably working for 8-10 hours straight and he deserves some rest too. DO NOT take your frustration on your kids or your husband. The key here is to work as a team, and like I mentioned above, having a chore/activity calendar can help you a lot !
7. USE THE ELEMENT OF SURPRISE.
And by this I mean surprise your man!! Cook something special and take it to his job, or if its too much work for you, drive to his office around his lunch time and go grab a bite together (with or without kids). Don’t forget about being cheesy and romantic, its very important you don’t lose that. Specially if you’re like me, trying to get used to the 2 most important roles in your life, you have to make some time for romance, after all, before the kids it was just you and him, so don’t forget he needs you too. It doesn’t have to be something big, small details such as rubbing his feet, or writing a small note saying I love you can make a difference. Try to involve your kids into doing some arts and craft for daddy, I’m pretty sure it’ll make his day !!
Remember you’re doing the best you can, don’t feel guilty and don’t compare yourself to other moms or marriages you’ve seen. Each marriage and family is different and the most important thing is that you know, you’re the best wife to your husband and the best mommy your kids could have!! It can be tough, specially having multiple toddlers or infants, but they’re only going to be that little for a few years, so enjoy them, and don’t worry momma you got this!!
By: Valerie S.