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Spouse First, Baby Second
My husband and I celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary this week and were lucky enough to enjoy a night to ourselves, indulging in a grown-up dinner at an establishment that didn’t offer crayons, chicken nuggets or high chairs. We dressed up, thanked my husband’s mother for watching 10-week-old Bee and blasted the radio the whole way to the restaurant. And then?
We started to chat. About Bee, of course. And babies. And parenting. And swaddling and nursing and routines and how much we love that darn baby swing.
We ordered. The appetizer arrived. And we had moved on to the subject of diaper changing techniques and were quickly entering into bath time woes. It was as if we had fallen into the trap every parenting magazine advises against: our lives had become our baby.
And like a bolt of lightning, we’d realized that we hadn’t really left Bee at home. We were just as preoccupied with feeding, changing and soothing her as if she’d been there herself. And how crazy would it be to bring a newborn to a fancy restaurant? We wouldn’t dream of it. So why were we inviting her to our anniversary dinner?
It served as the perfect reminder that as much as love our sweet baby, we love each other more. Bee is a big part of our lives now, but she can’t be all of it. And we established a rule that night:
If we don’t invite our baby to dinner, we won’t invite her to our conversation. And sure, her name will come up, and we’ll talk about how we’re transitioning and how difficult it all can be, but how much better it will all get. And we’ll console each other while we scan the menu. But as soon as dinner arrives, it’s grown-up time. We’ll chat about how we see the world (outside of our own four walls). What we plan for the future. Our shared goals.
Because soon we’ll be returning home, back to dirty diapers and nursery rhymes. But until then? Until dessert is finished and our check is paid? We’re enjoying the company of each other. Just the two of us.
And of course, if one of us needs to excuse ourselves to the powder room to look at baby photos of Bee on her phone? Well, we’re only human(!).