The One Where We *Need* a Babysitter

Daylight savings time’s end yesterday morning meant that my sweet baby who was previously waking for the day between 5:00 and 6:00 a.m. was up up UP at 4:15. I wasn’t complaining, since he had also slept a long-for-him six straight hours during part of the night. He and I decided to go visit his mommy at the hospital, since Evan and Asa were both at sleepovers and we could leave the house without waking anyone.

We took breakfast to my wife and her coworkers and just hung out until she got done. When we got home, the baby went right back to sleep and so did Heather, and I had some quiet time to myself, and what I thought about was that I wanted to manhandle my wife. Jump her bones. I couldn’t get it out of my mind for the rest of the day, which waa waa because she slept and then our house was full of kids and then she went back to work. Believe me, I got in some quality flirtations and smoochings before she left again, but that’s not really what this is about.

It’s more about this: marriage is really hard and exhausting even without kids, and tending to the marriage as an entity can be functionally impossible sometimes and feel…bleak. Lonely. Impossible. I kept seeing this post on Facebook yesterday as I was having these love oozings toward my wife, and feeling grateful that I’m in a place where my marriage actually is “for me” in addition to being such a boon to the rest of my family.

I also kept thinking back to this post from Yogi and Monkey’s Mama. Today, after an even earlier wake up call and an ever growing sleep deficit, the magical emotions had disappeared and been replaced with exhaustion masquerading as uglier and more complicated feelings, but really just exhaustion. I sat trying to pull my shit together and push out the thoughts of how I longed for the children to be away at school for the day and how irritated I was about mundane, unchangeable matters. I wondered what it was that made yesterday so warm and fuzzy, and today so gray and prickly…

And then it came to me. It was the being with, or observing, my wife in an environment that was not this house. She wasn’t really being my wife for those hours. She wasn’t being anyone’s mom. She was being this whole other person that I don’t actually know. She was being nurse Heather, boss Heather, coworker Heather – competent, funny, in charge, knowledgeable, reassuring, freaking SEXY.

I feel a few things about this revelation. One is that we have GOT to prioritize getting the hell away from these children and out of this house, like STAT. Because, secondly, my wife? She has zero opportunity to be with or observe me in any environment that is not being her bedraggled at best wife and her kids’ mama. So I wonder when the last time she really felt overcome with positive feelings toward me was, honestly.

We attended a birthday party with the kids a couple of months ago, and a friend who used to be our babysitter before she started having her own kids asked who takes care of Oscar. When I told her no one had yet, she basically flipped out and was like oh, no NO, you have got to leave that baby with someone and do something alone with your wife. So I don’t know if she’s the person for the job or who that person is, but wowee it is time to figure it out!