I had heard having a baby changes your marriage.
Maybe I didn't hear it enough, maybe I didn't believe it, or maybe nothing would have prepared me for the changes!
Ah, another change having a baby brings.
In some ways, the timing of Ainsley's birth was great, but in a lot of ways it was tough. She was born on the 4th day of school of Clint's last semester before graduation! He was only able to take a day off of school to help me after she was born.
Taking care of a newborn (me) is a more than full time job and so is taking a full load of engineering courses and working (him). We kicked into survival mode and Clint did what he needed to, and I did what I needed to.
The early days were really tough with Ainsley. She was a tough baby. My days became an endless blur of painful nursing sessions, dirty diapers, laundry, minimal sleep, and lots of crying, mostly from her.
Clint's days were full of schoolschoolschool!! And a little working. The poor guy was insanely stressed and busy. I don't know if he went to bed before 2am the whole semester!
To say the least, we were divided. We lost our team we had spent the two previous years building. Instead of Clint and I, it was now Clint and School or Me and Ainsley.
I honestly thought the partnership between my husband and I had ended.
I felt my marriage full of love, respect, and adoration was over.
Now I was a mother, and that was all I was going to be.
Because we weren't receiving the love from each other we desired, we both began to resent each other a wee bit.
The PPD was intense. I was feeling worthless, ugly, not worthy of love. My life felt meaningless. This doesn't leave a lot of energy for doing things like writing love notes to my husband.
Clint and I have always had an incredible marriage. Really, I think it's exceptionally good. I was heartbroken that by doing what we were supposed to and having a baby, our marriage was so damaged. Making each other happy had always come natural, but now we had to work for it.
I'm not sure how old Ainsley was, but I know it was more than two months, when Clint and I finally had a talk. You know, I think it was the first time since she was born that we had a real, heartfelt talk. We talked for hours, tears were sheds, needs addressed. It was the best thing we could have done for our marriage. I was unaware Clint felt abandoned and he didn't know I was feeling the same. We told each other how we felt, what we needed from each other, etc. We have had to have many follow-up talks since. We've tried to make going on dates occasionally a priority. We came up with a plan of when and how we would make time for each other. We put more effort into showing one another our love.
It's getting better. A lot better. It's almost back to normal. It has taken work but it is so worth it. I'm a huge fan of marriage and I really believe just about any issue can be talked through. I'm really grateful to have such a kind husband and sweet baby. It has been a hard time in my life, but they truly make my life better.
Marci Dawn Photography: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Marci-Dawn-Photography/351726558190568
p.s. I had Clint read this before I posted it. I intend to be honest but never to incriminate my husband. He is 100% supportive of this blog. He really is an incredible husband.