This weekend while we were at our pool and Sarah was splashing at our pool I suddenly had a very worrisome thought:
What have multiple children done to my marriage?
Sarah was playing with her new friend, who is a singleton, and her mom and dad were . . . well, cute. They were a few year younger than us and obviously still madly in love. They played in the water together. He tossed her around. She tried to tossed him. He gently splashed her and nudged her away, told her to go get a drink, he had the 'baby.' She went over to their spot (a nice, neat area with a small cooler, bag, and three towlels), had some pretzels and hummus and a beer. By herself. Her husband communicated to her a couple times while she was their by smiling and gesturing with his hands toward the cute things their daughter was doing.
I barked at my husband and the kids when we arrived at the pool because before I even got a bite of my food I had four hands reaching into it for a french fry. My husband played in the water with John in the shallow end while I watched Sarah and Violet fling themselves off the diving board. When I managed to get my husbands attention and he came over, we laughed at them, then yelled at them in unison as they ran down the slippery surface of the diving board. When he gestured to me in silence it was to tell me that John was sitting on the edge of the pool and didn't I have a parenting bone in body? He was going to fall in! We were in the deep end! Our spot was spread out over 10 feet, consisted of five towels, three bags, a pizza box, a take out box, five pairs of shoes and a cooler bag. My husband and I were not lovingly tossing each other around the pool that night. Nor any other night at the pool.
And it got me to thinking. I have more friends with one child than just this couple, and I started thinking about all the things they do. The dates they have. The nights out as a couple -- and alone for girls night and guys night -- they have. They have time for the gym. Time- and the ability to get a get a babysitter without spending an additional small fortune, plus the added problem of finding a sitter who can deal with three children --to go out as a couple.
I think. OR is it that my husband and I have just stopped making the time? This problem is one I see throughout marriages with multiple children. That being said, I chose to have this many children -- and I wanted more. (I'd even have another, but I can't.) I was excited to add each child into our family and it wasn't until John was born that I felt our family was complete. So, obviously I was meant to have multiple children. I was meant to have a huge, messy spot at the pool and be all distracted.
That love is in my heart. I want it to be in my eyes again.