Do you remember the early days of your relationship? There was hardly time for anything but each other. Lisa and I brought on a good deal of eye rolling but that was fine with us. We were making up for lost time! In those intense, invigorating days, it's impossible to believe that one day, there might come a cooling of passions and a perspective that includes more than just your tight relationship.
Not us. Our Love is different than all the rest. We'll never stop loving each other, about 100% of newly married couples say.
But Life is Love's determined adversary, committed to humble her naive pretentions. The endless evenings of early marriage's unscheduled passions gradually yield to the exhaustion of the third trimester, expanding bills, and the busyness of normal life.
Do you remember when your first child was born? Just amazing ... like staring at the Grand Canyon for the first time – your mind simply can't absorb it all. Psalm 127 brought to life. Yes, indeed, "Children are a blessing, an inheritance, from the Lord."
But a wonderful inheritance is only wonderful if it is kept properly in its place. And what was intended as a blessing often becomes the very instrument of relational distance until, over time, a couple can’t even see each other from where they are.
Babies and children are part of what makes life rich but if we're not careful, they also can diminish the depth of love we were meant to have for our spouse. Children will use up exactly 100% of all available parental attention and energy if they are allowed to.
It's subtle and we often don't see it coming. After all, it's just a little baby, right?
For a new mother, it's easy to become so focused on loving and caring for the new child that her husband (remember that guy you used to be crazy about?) becomes a third party – present but not really important to what is going on.
New fathers often become so focused on protecting and loving the new baby, "mom" can begin feeling neglected, too. Doesn't he notice that I need loving and caring, too?