Marriage & Motherhood
Balancing marriage and motherhood is no small task. Both roles are incredibly important, and the challenge to keep them in balance can sometimes feel impossible. If you sometimes feel overwhelmed with trying to take care of your little one but also show your partner love & affection this post is for you.
It is one of those words that often is so strong, it gets a good reactions from people. There’s a wide array of perspectives on balance, ranging from “there’s no such thing as balance” to “balance is entirely possible if you do x, y, and z.”
WHAT EXACTLY IS BALANCE?
What balance is not: balance is not “having it all together.”
Balance does not mean that all areas of your life are exactly aligned to your satisfaction 100% of the time. Balance doesn’t mean that you never feel stressed or have days that are chaotic. For me, balance means an overall sense of wellness in your life in all areas. It means that you are spending your time, and your life, in the areas that matter most to you. It means that you are, most of the time, operating out of a place of contentment instead of chaos.
So how on earth does one keep marriage & motherhood balanced?
First, I believe it starts with knowing what your core values are. In order to keep things in balance, you need to know what your end goal is. If you are not clear on what things are most important to you, and how you want your life to look, then you will probably always feel out of balance.
This was the case for me for me. I remember before Lucas was born I was told by someone as they pointed to Spencer, "He is the first man in your life, you need to remember that & care for him just as much as you do now." Once motherhood came into the picture, things became really unclear, overwhelming & a little hard!
I was not keeping things in balance, but instead I was doing a bunch of random things with my time.
I understand now that part of this was due to the fact that my husband and I were not clear on our core values. We hadn’t spent time discussing what we wanted our new life as parents to look like. And therefore, we were often living a life of chaos. We would go a whole day and one of us would say "have you kissed me today?" then we would have small picker on why he hasnt kissed me and vice versa. Life IS in chaos with a baby and as new parents.
Finally we recognized the importance of living life according to our values. We spent time late nights just talking because we couldn't sleep. What did we want in life, where do we want to be in a couple of years, do we want a second child in our future? We need to spend more time together once Lucas is in bed.
This was very helpful to our marriage, because it allowed us to see what is most important to each of us, and then agree on what our family’s core values would be.
This concept has also helped me personally, as it has allowed me to make sure my life is aligning with my core values and honestly, has helped me tremendously with stress. I don't find myself clenching my teeth as much throughout the day, I don't stretch my muscles out of being anxious. I finally feel like I have things on the right path.
Secondly, I feel that balancing marriage & motherhood involves taking care of yourself as a mother. If you want to pour out into your marriage, your kid(s), you must first be filled up yourself.
We need to take care of ourselves and value our own wellness. You can see 5 MUST DOs before bed here to start your journey to self care.
When we do this, we are much more equipped and ready to invest in the people around us.
Again, I learned the hard way on this one. As a young mom, I am trying my best to get off the ground on social media, which is a HUGE task, supporting my husband in his work, and trying to be a mother.
But what I was not doing was investing much time into my own spiritual development. I wasn’t prioritizing time for myself, taking care of my physical health as far as exercise. I wasn’t spending time doing things I really enjoyed, like writing, listening to music I loved, or spending time doing my makeup or going for walks in the trails. On top of all of that, my spouse and I realized we weren't working as a team for a while, we would bicker often. ps. when you're two tired parents communication doesn't always come easy! BUT communication is key.
Once we got over that hump, which was about 5 months postpartum for me, we were back to our old ways. "Honeymoon stage forever" if you will, with the occasional bicker of course. Who doesn't! My favorite is when we think a-like and Spencer says "This is why I married you" or when he tells me Im his best friend... Ok ok, getting cheesy.
Once I started to take care of myself and see the value in investing in self-care, I started to see improvements in other areas of my life like my parenting, being a wife.
So for me, the 2 primary ingredients to keep my life in balance are this: knowing my core values and caring for my own wellness.