We’ll Always Have Paris

ParisBefore I had children, I had a vague notion that my life would change but really nothing can prepare someone for the complete transformation that occurs once baby makes his arrival.

Gone was my self-centeredness.  It wasn’t a conscience shift.  I didn’t have some sort of epiphany.  It was much simpler than that: I just didn’t have the time to focus on myself anymore.

I was quite blinded when it came to my marriage.  I was naïve to think that my relationship would somehow escape the trials of parenthood unscathed.

Somewhere between diaper changes and car shuttles to skating lessons, I opened my eyes to the fact that my husband and I were becoming a cliché: ships passing in the night.  Each of us charting our own course: me, on a quest to be the perfect mother and him the perfect provider.

Both of us were unintentionally neglecting the very glue that holds our precious family together.

It happened in a natural flurry, the shift between coupledom and insta-family.  Our relationship comfortably grew and evolved but in the mess and mire that is parenthood, such a connection between partners can easily fray.

We try to maintain balance with regular “date-nights” but the idea of spending a week away from the kids, our home and all of our responsibilities was exactly what we needed to recharge our selves and our relationship.

Paris gave us a chance to slip off our mother/father identities and try on our former selves.  Our time away was reminiscent of when we were dating.  Amazingly, we fell back into our familiar ways.  No longer was I the bossy, exhausted mother – always pressed for time.   I laughed.  A lot.  We blew off the museums in favour of champagne cocktails and afternoon naps.  We ate late.  Really late.  When normally I would be sleeping.

Without the constraints of time we aimlessly wandered the cobblestone streets and found ourselves.

On the plane heading home, I was as giddy a newlywed; full of promise and renewal, the balance restored.  I watched my husband sitting across the aisle casually sop up the mess from a spilled drink and the little girl beside him fidgeting on her wet seat.  I was overwhelmed with emotion.

In the quiet of that moment, I saw him as the easy-going young man that I had married, the compassionate father he had become and the husband that I have always loved.

 

16 thoughts

  1. ….this post seriously just gave me goosebumps. Love that you guys did this trip and love that it had the EXACT effect you were hoping for.

    Thanks for sharing – you have inspired me… 😉

    1. It was such a renewal and something we both really needed. I hope you can find some time for the two of you – real time. Time away long enough to really feel the benefits of “a break”. Let me know when you decide to make the escape 🙂

  2. Cliche’s are there for a reason-it really is hard to stop becoming one of them. So great you were able to get away. I hope we’ll be able to follow in your footsteps once Stella’s a bit older.

    1. It’s funny how many cliches and stereotypes I see in myself. I have done many things that I vowed never to do. Such is parenting! When Stella is older you will be able to spend some time together without the brood.

      Great post about partnership and parenthood on your blog the other day. I could see myself . . .

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