JUST MARRIED:Falling in Love all Over Again

Posted by queenmadison

The love and bond between new parents and their babies. Falling in love again with your spouse.
I used to think I loved my husband. Good looks, wicked sense of humor, athletic body and incredibly smart—I thought I loved it all, the whole package. I was wrong.
My feelings for my husband have changed. Since the birth of our first child I've come to realize that I didn't entirely love him before. I only loved part of him, the part that I could see. It was like being fifteen and thinking that kissing was the most exciting feeling in the world until you discovered true passion or enjoying the feel of water in the shower until you stood at the edge of the ocean and felt the waves crash around you. Seeing this man I've known for years be a daddy to our little girl, I realize that the big picture is just starting to come into focus and I'm seeing a side of my guy that makes me love and appreciate him even more.
In Your Eyes
The sandy hair, pug nose and tremendous smile that attracted me to my husband are even more beautiful reflected in the face of our daughter. She's the spitting image of her daddy. When people comment how much they look alike, my favorite line is, "I did all the work and he gets all the credit!" But it's just for laughs. I honestly adore the fact that they look alike, and I get a special little thrill as he grins and puffs up with pride when strangers notice the resemblance. He's proud of her, and I in turn, am proud of them both. Now that she's getting older, she's begun to adopt some of his mannerisms too. It's a crack up to see her make the same faces he makes when she doesn't like something or laugh with the same silly grin. The sight of them together compels me to lean over, kiss the two of them and exclaim, "I love this face!"
Because moms tend to decide what our children wear, what they eat and which type of stroller is best, it's easy for us to feel like our babies are little extensions of ourselves. Thank goodness for daddy's dimples, his brown eyes or "that look" that was passed on to our babies to remind us how that precious little person is a part of the big person that we fell in love with long ago.

Tricks of the Trade
There are some things only a daddy can do and I am so grateful for them. When my baby is sick or distressed, the only place she'll fall asleep in his her father's arms. Those strong arms around her and a warm chest behind her make her feel safe and loved. The vision of this tiny girl curled asleep in her daddy's arms is a memory I'll keep with me forever. What's so amazing is that before her arrival, my husband had never held a baby in his life. I have to wonder, "Who is this man and where did this magic Daddy-Mojo come from?" Whether it's watching your child ride high on broad shoulders or seeing your husband teach your son to catch a ball or shake hands, it's the special parenting that only a father can give that makes us look at him in a new light and really appreciate our man.
Macho Man
The bigger they are, the harder they fall, and when your big guy falls for that little baby, it's enough to make you melt. I think it's why we women embrace characters like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Kindergarten Cop and Tom Selleck in Three Men and a Baby. There's something sexy about tough guys who sing lullabies and powder little bottoms. Who knew that our remote hogging, sports addicted, frequently insensitive husbands had it in them? The guys who wouldn't take an aspirin for a broken leg are kissing boo-boos and empathizing with teething pain.
You can't help but be overcome watching a macho man go mushy. My guy is a former Marine, a karate instructor and a marathon runner - a strong man of few words. So when I hear him cooing gently to our baby or see him sorting and folding tiny socks, I go weak at the knees with love.
Silent Sacrifices
Nine (or ten) months of pregnancy, flabby stomach and no sleep. You're at home picking Cheerios out of the carpet and peanut butter off the curtains while he's at work having exciting conversations and going out to lunch. Just when it seems like you've made the biggest sacrifices for your children, remember that he's made some pretty big ones too. But he's a guy, so he'd rather have a root canal than open up and tell you about the worries that keep him up at night.
First, he lost his wife. The woman who smelled like vanilla and musk now carries the odor of spit up and wet wipes. The frisky lady that called him to whisper sweet nothings, calls to see if he can pick up a pizza for dinner... again. He can still see glimpses of the smart, sexy woman he married, but she's pretty busy right now and when the poopy hits the pail, he gets shortchanged.

Then he gave up his favorite pastime. You both miss the days of lounging in bed on Saturday mornings, but he's probably missing some other bedtime activities as well. Of course women mourn the evening romps that take a hiatus after baby, but let's be honest; it's men who think about sex every four minutes, and their desires aren't dampened by postpartum hormones.
Your man not only gave up undivided attention from you, he's temporarily given up his favorite activity too.
Now that he's a father, he gets the less than glamorous job of the "other parent". You got to carry that miracle inside of you, feel the tiny kicks and experience the inexplicable bonding of nursing your baby. You get 90% of the attention and compliments that come with parenthood. He gets to install the car seats and refill the Diaper Genie. Kids love both their parents, but mommy is the undisputable favorite for quite a few years, and that can leave Dad feeling like a third wheel.
Then there's the financial pressure. With new expenses like diapers, baby clothes, tons of baby gear, life insurance and well-baby visits, your hardworking man has good reason to chew his nails. If you cut down on your work schedule or stopped working altogether, your partner feels the extra pressure of supporting a growing family all by himself. According to Linda Stone Fish, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program at Syracuse University, the number one thing men worry about is money. So if your mate seems distant or distracted, it might not be football he's thinking about.
Before the arrival of your little one(s), your husband was plagued by a young man's concerns: gaining a few extra pounds around the middle, golf game hitting a slump, forgetting to notice that you got your bangs trimmed. But being a real father means being a real man and now he's got the responsibility and the real stress to go with it. For silent strength under pressure, I admire my man.
The Big Picture
Despite the stronger bond created between two people when they create a life, a baby won't cure a bad relationship; on the contrary, the emotional strain will only make it worse. And some things that were great before you had kids (like sex) will undoubtedly take a nosedive for a while. But if your partner is someone you admired and respected before, having a child can reveal a deeper, more meaningful side of the man you thought you knew. So just when you're ready to kill your mate for leaving his underwear on the floor again, watch him installing safety locks on the cabinets or listen to him inventing a silly song to make your baby giggle and remember what's really important.