My Last First Date…

621876_10101000086370924_658735821_o

Seven years ago today I went on my last first date. Around that time, I had been going on a good amount of first dates. I had been in a series of serious relationships prior to and fed up with they way they dragged on for years only to end in heart break. I really just wanted to find the person I was to spend the rest of my life with and decided if the first date wasn’t a hit, I wasn’t going to try and make something happen.

My now husband and I spoke on the phone for a few weeks before our first date (which I fearfully canceled a few times). The conversations were so great I worried it would end up like all my other recent first dates….in disappointment. However, I had a small amount of hope that maybe this time would be different. I was caught in the middle of hopeless romantic and negative Nancy. After my second cancelation I’ll never forget him saying over the phone, ‘Renee, we are going on this date.’ We rescheduled for the final time and I went on my last first date.

It still feels like yesterday. I remember impatiently waiting for him. He hit traffic and texted me he was running a little late. I was nervous, excited, scared and filled with so many emotions and then he walked in. We were already Facebook friends so I knew what he looked like. He smiled and walked towards me and I melted. I knew this was it. I’m marrying this man. Sounds silly, cheesy and totally cliche but it’s true. He smiled and I fell in love.

We didn’t even order dinner yet and he was already asking to see me the next day. We spent the next two weeks together and by my birthday (August 20th) he told me he was falling in love with me. He was it. He was the one. He’s still the one.

Now, we are married (celebrating five years at the end of the month) with a toddler and a little baby boy (!) on the way. Our journey isn’t always a fairytale and we definitely have our moments but oh do I love this man. Even when he drives me crazy I still just love him so much. I love him not only because I chose him but HE CHOSE ME. He didn’t have to marry me. He could have married anyone, but he picked me. He fell in love with me. I am far from perfect but he never tells me that. He only builds me up. He reminds me what a great job I’m doing and how proud he is of me. He tells me he loves me and he shows me. He makes me better.

Isn’t that the hopes for one another as spouses? To make each other better? To want to be better? To give the love we want to receive. To do things because we care without the expectation of something in return? Marriage isn’t easy…then throw kids in the mix….WHOA….marriage just became a whole new ball game…but sometimes it’s nice to go back and remember the reasons you fell in love. Remember why you both say YES!

I would never want to experience this life with anyone other than him. The good times, the bad times and everything in between…he is ALWAYS there for me. Seven years ago today he stole my heart, and I’m so lucky he’s never let it go. I love you MPD. Here’s to us….

Dear Husbands…Love the Mothers of Your Children

tumblr_inline_n9yeeit9Fz1sfcj98

Dear husbands:
We love you. We really do. And even when we don’t always show it, we are blessed to have your in our lives. You are our other half, our best friends, our companions for life, our secret keepers, our rocks, our circle of trust, our everything. We remember our first date and what you wore. We remember the first kiss. We remember the exact moment when we knew you were the one. We can still picture your proposal like it was yesterday. We will always remember our wedding day. It will forever be one of the best days of our lives. We remember the little moments, the ones you might not even think of. A look, a glance across the room, cooking together, dancing in the kitchen, laughing on the couch, taking a walk, cuddling at night, just being plain silly together…and we keep these moments close to our hearts.

But we also remember the bad. We remember the hurtful words, the painful arguments and the frustrating fights that escalate to a point where we forget what we’re even fighting about. We remember feeling unloved, unworthy and unappreciated. We remember the times you discounted our feelings, ignored our requests, judged our choices and didn’t listen to our thoughts. We remember not being on the same page (maybe even for a while), feeling distant, feeling your distance, wondering what the future holds, wondering how we can stay together, wondering at times how we got here, wishing things were different, wishing some things never changed, wishing you’d try harder, care more, help more…love more…

We are not easy to deal with, not by a long shot. We can be too emotional, too needy, too independent, too stubborn, too talkative, too worried, too insecure, too demanding, too negative, too hurtful, too nagging and sometimes just too much. We know this. We don’t try to be this way, it just happens. It’s part of who we are. We may be some of these things, none of these things or all of these things. Actually, we are a lot of things. We are wives, daughters, sisters, mothers, friends, caregivers, babysitters, students, employers and employees. But above all, above all the things that we are, we are mothers. We are the mothers of your children. We physically brought this/these child/children into the world. We are responsible for them 24/7. We know that you are responsible too. This gift from God wouldn’t be possible without you, but our roles are very different. Maybe you don’t see this, or maybe you do…

From this point on, we don’t have the time to be sexy. By the time the kids are in bed we are exhausted. Whether we are stay-at-home moms or working moms, we are exhausted. And we want to be sexy for you, we really do, but we literally do not have the time or the energy. So please just love us. Tell us that we are beautiful when we know we don’t even look close to that…and mean it. We want to see that look in your eyes when we go out without kids that you’re still insanely attracted to us. We want more than anything to feel loved even when making love is the last thing on our minds.

We can do it all but we will burn out. We can be the mom, the wife, the maid, the cook, the party planner, the host, the travel agent, the disciplinary, the ‘mean’ parent, the scheduler, the shopper for all needs/occasions/presents, the lunch mom, the PTA mom, the classroom mom, the sports coach, the taxi driver, the math tutor, the spelling checker, the project helper…we can be it all. But it’s not easy. It’s not easy to take on all the tasks that we do, many which go unnoticed. Sometimes we need help without asking. Sometimes we are tired too and would love to lay on the couch and veg out…but we can’t. We have to make bottles, make breakfasts, lunches and dinners, play, build forts, give baths, read bedtime stories, make sure there aren’t monsters in the room, tuck in our babies, clean up toys, clean up the house, do laundry, kiss boo-boos, help with homework, attend to cries, whines, whimpers, colds and stuffy noses. We don’t have time to relax. And if we did, we still couldn’t because our mind is listing all the things we still need to do.

So we’re sorry if we don’t have time to be the wives we once were or the wives you want. But we are the mothers. We are the moms that give our all to ensure we have respectful, kind, intelligent and loving children. We do this with your help of course, but we mostly take on this role and maybe you feel like we should. Maybe you feel as if this is what we were meant to do. But we need your help. We need your help more than you often sometimes give or offer. We need breaks. We need to lay on the couch and veg out. We need our hair done, our nails done, a massage, a nap or sleep without interruption, the ability to go to the bathroom alone, a bubble bath and sometimes we just need a day without all the responsibilities.

We love you. We really do. And even though we don’t always show it, we are blessed to have you in our lives. But you are blessed to have us too. You are blessed for all the things that we do. We may not always find time to take care of you and your needs, but we also need caring for. So the next time you begin to feel overlooked, unappreciated, dissatisfied, neglected, unnoticed and under cared for, understand that we see you, we love and we appreciate you. But our roles have shifted and as much as we try to be the best wives and mothers, sometimes being a mom is more important. So thank you for your love, your patience and your understanding. Thank you for letting outbursts slide, giving us a break and making us feel beautiful. But most of all and through it all, thank you for being our husbands.

Love,
The mothers of your children