I had just changed my 247th diaper for the day, and immediately the baby spit up on me. I hadn’t eaten all day, and my husband was supposed to bring home some lunch (you know, at 3 pm…). I heard a loud smash, then he walked in the door with no fries in his hands.
“What was that!?” I asked him, and he told me that he dropped a glass jar getting stuff out of the car and had to go clean it up. And lunch? Well, he decided instead of stopping for lunch he’d bring something home to make.
So after he left to clean up the glass mess by the car, he came inside and I handed him the baby so that I could change out of my spit-up soaked leggings. He put her down and started to make some lunch.
While he microwaved, I vented about the day I’d had. A huge, last minute project for work, end of the month chaos, the newborn that had spent the whole day glued to me, and I hadn’t eaten anything so I was starting to feel sick.
Finally, food was ready, and I got to sit down. Like the world’s most unfortunate timer, the baby started wailing. I put my head in my hands, partly because of the hunger-headache, partly because she was so dang loud, and partly because I was just done with the whole day.
Then my husband said it. It was meant to be helpful, but it only exhausted me more.
“Do you need me to get the baby?”
I told him no, and I went to scoop up my tiny wailing 4-week old. I sat in my rocking chair, snuggling and rocking her while she calmed down, and I thought.
What do moms really need from our husbands?
I mean, obviously, all moms would love a vacation. And we all need our husbands to take the kids while we escape for a night out with the girls or even a phone call with our best friend. But what do we really need?
I snuggled that baby and I counted her tiny toes. I rubbed her back and smelled her hair. And I thought. What moms really need is for our husbands to know.
We need them to hear the baby start wailing and know that she needs to be picked up.
We need them to know that the kids’ therapist needs a new referral and call the pediatrician.
We need them to know that we haven’t been on a date night in months and plan something (even if it’s at home).
We need them to know that our kids’ soccer party is next week and that we have to pay the credit card Tuesday and that we signed up for snack-duty on the 6th.
Because what exhausts moms more than all of the “doing” is all of the “knowing”
We know which kid needs a haircut next.
We know which kids have lost which teeth, and how much the toothfairy brings them.
We know when a whine means that the kids just need a snuggle, which means they need a snack, and which means they’re actually sick.
We know that this kid needs his Trolls watch when we get in the car, but that one has to have the red cup or they’ll lose their mind.
Moms. Just. Know.
And sometimes moms just need a break from knowing
We need our husbands to know so that we can stop being the glue that holds our family together for five minutes.
Sometimes we need our husbands to be on, so we can be off for a little while.
So to my sweet husband, no, I don’t need you to get the baby. I need you to know when you need to get the baby.
That’s the one thing moms really need from you.
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