In the interests of transparency, honesty and authenticity, I feel this is something I need to talk about. Yesterday was quite possibly my worst Valentine’s Day ever. Even worse than those Valentine’s Days at school when everyone got roses except you.

Yes, that bad.

For those of you who don’t know, I was very excited about yesterday. I organised a babysitter, made dinner reservations and got all dressed up to go out with my Beard.

I thought we both needed some time away from bedtime routines, tantrumming toddlers and poo nappies. We hadn’t spent much time together lately so it would be a chance to talk, gaze lovingly into each other’s eyes and just reconnect.

Of course that’s not what happened.

I think parents generally are in such a weird space in terms of their relationship when you have small kids.

We actually spend so much time together, the Beard and I, but it’s not very often that we’re alone together. Well, we’re alone after bedtime but then we’re either cooking dinner, cleaning up toys or falling asleep while watching Grey’s Anatomy. All the time hoping and praying not to hear a peep from the monitors. So it doesn’t really count.

Then you go out and all you want to do is talk about your kids. You do a 20 minute catch up on work and friends, but then, before you know it, without even wanting to, you find yourself talking about the hand, foot and mouth outbreak at J’s school, the sleeping bag zip that needs to be fixed for Little S and who’s going to do the shopping for baby food.

You make a few good organisational decisions, you laugh at the funny things your kids did that week, and you sit back comfortably with your glass of wine and silently congratulate yourself on winning at parenting. Which is winning at life really, isn’t it?

And then someone makes a comment and you find yourself falling down a slippery slope to divorce.

I don’t remember who started it.

I called the Beard out for being on his phone so much when he’s with the kids. I asked him to try come home a bit earlier sometimes to help me out in the afternoons. I moaned about how Little S is going through a bad sleep patch and was keeping me up at night. I complained about the Beard complaining about a lack of sleep when he gets at least 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep (I mean, what is that?!).

The Beard told me to stop working so I can focus on being with the kids. He told me to find another nanny if I wasn’t coping with being a mom. He moaned about me complaining all the time. He complained about me preferring to focus on work than being a stay-at-home mom. He said he would happily stay at home with the kids if I could earn what he earns.

Just you know, the usual, but not nice stuff. Stuff we’re always thinking but we know we shouldn’t say. Stuff that once you say one thing then it all comes vomiting out before you can help yourself.

But then he really got mean.

He complained about me only drinking Sauvignon Blanc.

I’m still shaking just thinking about it.

Needless to say he slept in the guest room last night.

Image credit: Photo by Jp Valery on Unsplash

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