Sunday, March 6, 2016

Airport kisses

A few years ago, Guiliana & Bill Rancic received some negative press over their decision to put marriage before children.

The offending statement:
"We put our marriage first because we want to be the best role models for Duke possible, because our relationship is the first relationship he's exposed to... so if we're kissing and dancing and loving each other, it can only benefit him."

The thing is... they're right.

Too often, the relationship between husband and wife becomes lost when you have kids. And, nearly every time, that causes the marriage to become dysfunctional.

I'm certain we all know a couple who brought kids into an already rocky marriage. It never works long term and that couple inevitably will become part of the "1 in 5" statistic.

We hear so much about work/life balance which is so important. It's necessary for a healthy mind, body and family.

But, what about marriage/kids balance? It's just as important.

I've been guilty of putting my kids first. They rely on us for, quite literally, everything. By the time I'm home from dealing with unreasonable demands on my time at work, it's time for us to take care of the kids.

I'm often (okay, almost always) ready for bed before Ryan.

So, yes, it's hard to find the left over energy to be an affectionate spouse.

And, having dealt with the death of a child and then the very long process of conceiving again, I'm also guilty of treating my children as near enough to Greek God(desses).

But, it's true, it doesn't serve them well to not put our marriage first.

I've started to see more and more how it's affecting James and I. Rushed mornings makes us forget to pause for a moment and give a real hug that says "I love & appreciate you and we're in this together".

I remember, before the kids, James and I were separated for months at a time while waiting for his Visa to come through so he could move here.

When he would pick me up at the airport, we had movie scene worthy kisses. We were so happy to be together again.

Its led to me to ensure we exchange "airport kisses" as often as possible. It helps us connect again. It helps us remember we are more than parents... we are partners.

Guiliana and Bill weren't saying they love each other more than their son. The love is entirely equal. But, it's okay to steal a few minutes for just the two of you. In fact, it's okay to steal an entire afternoon (or weekend!) to keep the marriage strong.

Because, if the marriage isn't strong and you're worshiping your children more than your partner, it's doomed.
Maybe not today or tomorrow - but, without a doubt, someday.

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