The summer break is over, our children are home from vacation, and the family is officially back into the routine of a dual income household with two school aged children.
Like most families, we do what we have to do to get everything done. My husband and I rely on organizational systems that make sense for us, make compromises about what hast to get done and what can wait for another day, and practice a whole lot of cooperation in order to keep everything spinning.
You know what we don’t do?
I mean, sure, we exchange words. Half sentences. We have conversations at the dinner table about how everyone’s day was. We begin discussions as one of us is coming or just before the other has to get going. But sit down, detailed, decision making talks?
It seems that those disappeared the minute both kids stepped back into the house. If it hadn’t been for their extended vacation at their grandparents’ houses, I may not have even noticed the difference between adult conversation and this communication dance that we normally do. I’m kind of impressed that we’ve been able to make life changing decisions over the last 10 years this way!
But I also miss talking.
i seem to recall a time in our marriage when we talked in our bed, just before falling asleep. I’ve heard other couples say that this is when and where most of their adult conversations occur. However, recently I’ve found that two people who work full time are most interested in one thing when they finally climb into bed at night: sleep. There are many nights that one of us will start talking, only to have the other (yes, ok, usually me) drift off mid-sentence.
We also used to do a lot of chatting in the car. But now we have a ten year old who is keenly interested in listening and participating in every discussion that occurs within ear shot of him. And while that is great for interacting with our child, it’s also one less opportunity for us to talk as spouses instead of parents. I never realized how much I got out of those long naps in the car!
While we haven’t adjusted (yet) to this year’s new schedule, I do know that we must. Finding time to talk to one another strengthens our relationship, makes us happier individuals, improves our parenting, and helps us each succeed in our careers. And, you know, it’s nice to just be able to talk to my husband once in a while.
Do you and your significant other, if you have one, find time to talk? Really talk? And if so… when? And if not… do you miss it?
Photo by Britt Reints.