On your wedding day, you probably had visions of endless romance, assumed you’d always make time for one another, lift your partner’s needs above any other, and prioritize date nights—guarding that treasured escapade like Fort Knox gold.
Then you had kids, and reality set in. Time isn’t a free commodity anymore.
What happened? You’re left scratching your head, wondering where the romance went. If he cared, wouldn’t he make the effort? Do you? Let’s be honest, life is too busy for dates, the kids shoved their way to the front of the priority line, and quite frankly, you’re tired! I hear this all the time as a mom coach.
There’s too much to do, too much stress, and too many people demanding your attention.
When you climb into bed, all you want is to bathe in the quiet, have a few seconds to breathe, and hopefully get a good night of sleep.
Maybe you linger for a second on your earlier romantic moments, thinking back to a time when you could linger in bed, sleep in on Sunday mornings, cuddle, and even take time for long, leisurely dinners out.
Feeling more like roommates, these days?
There are ways to put the spark back into your relationship, but accepting things are different for a good reason is the first part of the process. Yes, things aren’t all peaches and cream, but you created a family, have an abundance of love in the household, and found out that when the chips fall, you’re there for each other. That’s the stuff real lives are made of—not fairy-tales.
So, what can you do to rekindle the magic? Here are some tips to get you started.
Finding Hidden Moments
How often are you connected to your mobile phone? You can usually find a spare minute to glance at Instagram, or maybe read a quick new update on your favorite site, right? Be honest. It’s easy when you squeeze these things into hidden moments.
What if you used that time connecting with your partner instead? Are the kids engaged in a TV show or playing with a game or toy? Steal those hidden moments to talk to your partner. Ask them about their day and actually listen. Ask their opinion about something. Tell them a sweet story or moment you remember from when you first met.
There are more hidden moments in your day than you realize, and by choosing to use them focusing on your partner, you’ll find yourself connecting more. Choose your partner over a random picture on Instagram of a stranger that’s showcasing something you probably don’t care that much about anyway.
Other things you can do in a pinch:
Write them a quick love note on a Post-it and stick it in their briefcase, on the bathroom mirror, share a journal, or on the car steering wheel.
Remind them about something you loved doing together, or something you love about them.
Laugh at an inside joke and relieve some stress.
Planning isn’t as much fun as being spontaneous unless you look at it differently. Sure, spontaneity is fun, but so is the flirtatious nature of planning a date, a weekend getaway, or whispering in their ear about quiet time later that night.
Get a sitter and make a date to see a movie, go to dinner, go for a drive, go for a walk, go for a bike ride, go to a museum, or whatever it is you’ve been wanting to do together.
Yes, it takes presence of mind to do it, and sometimes money can be tight, but that’s where planning ahead comes in. If you don’t have money for a sitter, see if Grandma can watch the kids for the day or weekend, and steal away some one-on-one time to reconnect.
If it can’t be now, plan for later. Plan a weekend escape, and go through the details together, cherishing the fun of what you can do (besides sleep-in) with a little bit of free time. No family living close by? What about a date at the library? Go as a family and let the kids enjoy story time, while you steal away to a nearby corner to share a moment talking with your spouse.
Even something as simple as planning their favorite meal can mean a lot. Think what you can do to brighten their day and know that the time and effort you put in will help keep the bonds of love burning brightly.
Small Touches, Big Connections
A small gesture like stroking your husband’s cheek when you’re talking to him, is a simple way to show affection. Love making is grand, but sometimes it’s the little things that matter when you feel like you’re drifting apart because you’re busy with the kids, life, work, and everything else under the sun.
Take your partner’s hand when you go for a family stroll.
If they’re doing a project, give them a quick shoulder massage to let them know you’re there. Those intimate moments are important to keep you connected.
It doesn’t have to be a massive gesture that makes an impact. Sometimes it’s the tiny touches that matter the most and remind our loved one that we’re not only still in love with them, but attracted, and appreciate them. A playful approach is as loving as a romantic one. Keep the love alive with thoughtful touch.
Appreciate Your New Path
Nobody said it would be easy, but you’ve come this far. You’ve created a family, and sure there have been challenges and bumps in the road. But when things changed, you adapted. You adjusted like champs and you’re getting things accomplished. Raising kids is a lot of work, but it’s also incredibly rewarding to be blessed with a family and watch your kids grow.
You get to see the world again through the eyes of a child and learn the expansive amount of love you can have for a tiny human. Kids make our lives a little less organized, busier, but so imperfectly perfect it’s amazing how life existed before them.
Need extra time with your honey? Try getting up a few minutes earlier or stay up a little later. Put the phone down, turn off the television, and focus on one another. Take the time to make each other a priority again, and it will be easier to find hidden moments by planning ahead, and accepting that yes life’s a little bumpier, but it’s pretty darn awesome, too.
You need to find hidden moments where you’re able
Planning ahead can make all the difference
Appreciate that while things are different, there’s so much to cherish
Love matures and grows, as does your relationship. It’s okay to look back at what was but treasure your future instead. Look at your blessings, and appreciate the bond you’ve built through the hardships, ups and downs, and challenges you’ve faced. You’re stronger, smarter, and yes…still tired. That’s okay, with a little creative planning, there’s always time for a nap later.
About the Author
Kelly Hater has over 15 years of coaching experience along with a B.S. in Health Promotion specialized in Exercise Science.
She specializes in helping clients overcome mom burnout, providing a clear, decisive plan that leads her clients on a path of success. Her clients no longer let mom guilt steal their identity and goals. Moms deserve to be happy and live a fulfilling life. She personally has overcome overwhelming struggles herself. Get the accountability needed to take action. As a mom of two she gets it! BOOK A FREE CALL