In the honour of the month of love I thought it would be a fitting time to talk about my relationship.
Like love stories from years gone by, ours started out at a hipster bar. Two awkward humans – one with adult braces (me), who had experienced enough tragic love in the form of online dating, tried the old fashion method of talking in person after finding a kindred spirit amongst the cool and romatically-skilled individuals of the crowd. My friends used to joke that my person was out there, he was just lost and didn’t have the right directions, they weren’t too far off. Between my mom and my partner there is a serious competition on who can find their way out of a phone booth. Our first date was at a pretentious coffee shop – my favourite kind, it adds the necessary layer to my coffee snobbery and from there we moved through the steps or decided to skip over a few fairly quickly.
Expanding a twosome to a threesome or more, whether in the bedroom or as a family unit changes the logistics and can add complications. You are no longer just each others priorities, there is another human to share the attention, time and the dynamics. We are no different, since both our families live elsewhere we became very reliant on each other and accustomed to it being our way. The first few weeks after our new team member joined it was a bit of an adjustment, I think more for me than my partner – maybe a bit of that only child not good at sharing thing. I missed certain things being just for two, something as simple as going to the Farmers Market instead of my partner running up to the closest store to get the necessary groceries. It was no longer an outing for us but something you had to do and quickly because of Cillian. We had a wedding to go to when Cillian was just a little shy of two months old, weddings to me mean dancing (there is the whole love and forever part too), I love showing off my dance moves to anyone who is within “rhythm” length, unfortunately being rookie parents we hadn’t really thought out how the day would go in 30+ degrees, while still trying figure out breastfeeding in public – oh those joyful days. I was stuck in a room for most of it while my partner was on groomsmen duties. I still had fun, the room ended up being a place where women would come and keep me company, I imagine it was very pioneer of us – women banding together over something so universal – boobs out, stealing sips of a drink and discussing Spanx.
Like all things, you eventually find your method or what you consider a method. It helps that you slowly get better at parenting with no sleep and your emotions tend to simmer down to a reasonable hormonal level. We also figured out how to still be us, as individuals, as a couple, and us as parents. I think that was the tricky part to begin with, when you think parents you think of your own, or people in your network that helped raise you, you don’t think of yourself and then also in the same token think of yourself as someones plus one. A friend once asked me right before I was about to have Cillian if it set in yet that I was to become a mom and I said no, she then went on to say that there are days when she still has to remind herself that the baby in the bedroom is her son and not a kid she is babysitting. I feel like those first few weeks you are reacting and play parenting, you jump from one situation to the next and think back to all the parents you have known growing up and what would they do. Once the idea that you are the parent, you don’t have to pretend to be one, you begin to be natural about it and you slowly start to gain back the other parts, such as being a couple.
Since we don’t have family around and we don’t always want to rely on our friends, we have had two dates since Cillian was born. We knew this before we decided to have kids and we would never want our families to feel like they were built in babysitters, so I am not sure even if we were closer if that number would have increased. It does mean we have to take our moments for us when we get them, like the morning car ride when I drop my partner off at school, at night after Cillian has gone to bed, to talk, decompress and just be goofy, and when we go to the gym together – doing something we love (he loves, I go for the vanity), working towards a goal that is separate from being parents. It helps that my person sees most things in life through the same lens I do, we have always been a couple that laughs a lot, neither of us takes ourselves serious, we know how to wind each other up and we appreciate a random kitchen dance party. We hope to raise our child with that same sense of humour and quirkiness to life, who knows maybe he will be a total square and that will be my cross to bear.
In summary I am very lucky to have procreated with someone who values humour and love the same way I do.