Loving Your Spouse and Your Newborn

The newborn phase is dreamy.  For example, there are the sweet grunts and squeaks, the tiny toes and fingers, and let's not forget the tiny clothes adorning the tiny bodies.  The little yawns and the way newborns are all curled up in an itty bitty ball is pure perfection.  The newborn phase is also like walking around in a dream most days because of total, utter exhaustion.  Let's be real, having a newborn is glorious, but also extremely tiring.  There is a reason sleep deprivation is used as a torture tactic.

In this dreamy foggy season of newborn-ness, it is so easy for me to forget about my spouse, the one who helped me create this tiny human.  I am tired, pretty much all day and all night.  Throw in the fact that I have a hard time napping, and I'm pretty much a walking time bomb with hardly anything left to give to my better half.  

I remember this newborn time with my other two and how Kevin and I only talked if we had to and it was usually about sleep or poop (or lack of) or sleep. About a month ago, right before Jude came into this world, I turned to Kevin in bed and said, 'I promise this time will be different and I will make time for you, even when I'm exhausted.'  He smiled, patted me on the back (with a knowing smile on his face), and said 'okay'.

Well, folks, I have, more than once, regretted that statement.  Deep down in my heart, I want to be connected to my spouse and make time for him in this season.  I want to have a conversation with him that doesn't involve the word 'poop'.  I want to love him the way I have loved him for the past nine and some change years.  But, my body rejects these thoughts.  My body tells me I'm tired, I'm exhausted, I'm spent.  My body tells me to coast, to get through today, that brighter days are coming when I will have more time and energy to give to Kevin.  

My body is not wrong, but my heart isn't either.  This time has been a bit different.  Partly because we have an extra set of hands in the house with my mom being here and partly because we have experience with this newborn thing and partly because we are being intentional this time around. 

Kevin and I have gone on a few dates, toting Jude along.  We have looked each other in the eyes and had a conversation, a real, actual conversation that doesn't involve the word 'poop'.  (Although we have had plenty of conversations about poop as well.) We have turned the t.v. off and decided to tune into each other.  We have made the time for one another and still loved and doted on and enjoyed our sweet baby Jude.  It has taken effort, the kind that makes you rethink it a hundred times before you really, truly, actually make the effort. 

The statement 'this time will be different' was made at a time when I wasn't exhausted and I could see and think clearly.  And now I'm exhausted and am clearly in a fog and that is exactly why I made the statement when I did.  But, I'm so incredibly happy I said those words because it has challenged me (and Kevin) and has kept us close during this season of sleepless nights and newborn cuddles.  

This newborn phase doesn't last forever and it will be over before I know it. Taking a few minutes here or there to connect with Kevin with intentionality has been oh so worth it and has allowed our marriage to be a priority during these dreamy days. 


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