Immediately after our wedding reception, I took my husband’s hand and said, “Let’s go make babies.” That is exactly what we did. Three babies came into our world fast and furious. Being married with kids has changed the dynamic in our house, in more ways than one.
The only dirty talk that happens now, consists of questions like, “What the hell is that smell? Didn’t you just change him?” “You have puke in your beard,” or ” Why did you just sit there and let her eat her booger?”
Foreplay is wiggling your eyebrows at each other. Time is of the essence—always.
One of you becomes the fun parent; one of you becomes the disciplinarian. These are not hard and fast roles, but for the most part, your kids know who to go to for what. The fun parent always gets the good stuff like,”Can we go out for ice cream?” “Will you help me make a booby trap?” and “Do I really have to change my underwear again today?” The disciplinarian gets the sucky stuff, like tattling. Sometimes you argue about it, but for the most part, you are your cool with it and thankful for your spouse, because you believe they have the harder job.
When you hear a song that takes you back to when you first started dating, you give each other a look and know what the other is thinking. Even if you are gazing over a dirty-diaper-changing session while holding a pacifier in your mouth backward.
Your husband can see your PMS coming a week early. Your hormones are intensified after having kids and you feel horrible about it. He adjusts accordingly but never mentions anything to you. He values his life too much
You try not to keep score, but you still do. You remind each other who let the dog out last, who wiped the last butt, and whose turn it is to sleep in. You play “Let’s See Who Can Go the Longest Without Taking Out the Trash.” Then your partner does something so sweet, you realize none of it matters and you decide to take out said trash (even though you are the one who did it last).
When one of you has absolutely no patience left, the other is somehow able to sense it, rise to the occasion, and make everything OK. They have seen you at your worst. They want to save themselves and your children, but mostly, they want to save you.
You are able to recognize when your spouse is really sleeping, and when they are pretend sleeping, which you both tend to do—like when one child is puking or having night terrors. Sometimes you give them a nudge, and sometimes you immediately start planning your revenge.
If you can’t get a sitter, but desperately need to connect with each other, you put the kids to bed early after feeding them chicken nuggets. You grill steaks, make risotto, share a whole apple pie, and talk about what brilliant kids you have.
You reminisce about your honeymoon and the trips you took before you had kids, but get giddy with excitement while planning a family trip to a place you went when you were young.
When your little angel swears, you give each other the big eyes. You are waiting for the other to do something about it, but neither of you do. It is too damn funny.
You get to experience so many firsts together—the first bath, first steps, first poo in the pot. If the other one is not there, you immediately reach for your phone. You always know there is another person who will be just as excited about it as you are.
You get to feel the tap your partner gives you when one of your kids is doing the most adorable/brilliant/hard thing ever. The tap that says, Look, but don’t let them know you are looking, lest they stop.
Watching non-kid shows becomes a scandalous date night. You can hardly contain your excitement all day. You put your kids to bed and watch a bunch of inappropriate stuff—the very stuff you work so hard to shield your kids from. It is luxurious.
Most of all, marriage with kids feels like home. You partner with someone you really love and try things for the first time. Sometimes you make epic mistakes, but every once in a while you are brilliant together. It doesn’t really matter though. What matters is the date nights, the firsts, saving each other, and the eyebrow wiggles. And when your kids are grown and gone, you will probably still share an apple pie and talk about how brilliant they are.