When it starts to feel like you and your missus are just two room-mates jointly caring for a small human, you need to call time-out.
It was week five of our new family and my partner and I were feeling equal parts tired, grumpy, excited, irritable and completely in love with our child.
Not only were our emotions out of whack but our relationship had taken a whack too.
Occasionally I would look at my partner through the craziness of the first few weeks and wonder who she was to me now. We both honestly didn’t know whether the other was the glue holding our sanity together, or the hammer hacking chunks off.
Luckily, we realised that perhaps what we needed was time alone together without a baby.
So I contacted my parents to arrange a few babysitting sessions and we set about planning some romantic dates.
It really was quite sweet, it felt like we were starting over almost.
In the week leading up to our first one I could feel sparks flying between us again: there were more longing looks, more warm smiles, more tight embraces.
Unfortunately when the big night finally arrived my partner’s pelvis pain flared back up. Forget dinner and a movie, there was no way she was going anywhere but the bed or the couch.
She was devastated as she knew how much I had been looking forward to this. I of course, told her not to worry.
I dropped our daughter off with my parents, then on the way home rented some crappy Marvel movie and picked up a pizza. I then lit a candle and set my partner up with four intricately placed cushions, nestled cosily between the pizza box and her pain medication.
Our romance restarted there and then, not in the physical sense, but the emotional.
At one point I was watching her watch the movie, her eyes sleepy, her mouth curling into a smile at Tony Stark being an arrogant dick.
Suddenly I saw her again, not just as the mother of my child, but as the love of my life.
It’s important to make time with your significant other during the first few months with your newborn.
It won’t be easy, you probably won’t feel like it, and it may seem strange to ‘date’ your partner. It likely won’t resemble anything close to your dates pre-baby, but it is crucial for your relationship.
Whether you accept it or not, your relationship has irrevocably changed, and you’ve both changed as individuals. It’s like you need to get to know each other again.
If babysitting is an option for you, invite her for a dinner and a movie, or get dressed up and see a show.
If not, then wait until baby is asleep, cook up a special meal, put on a nice shirt, light a candle and sit down for a romantic dinner together.
Hell, even a game of poker at 2 AM while you’re waiting for bubba to settle.