Did you read that title? Cause in America today that is a RADICAL statement. I remember back when I used to watch Oprah and she had on a woman who had declared that she loved her hubby first and her children second. Women went NUTS attacking her as a mother. How dare she put her husband before her kids?
You might not see it as radical, but I am not sure even those of us who believe it are living it. I adore my husband. Since the moment we decided to get married he has been my best friend and my favorite person to hang out with. He still is, but I am not sure my time and focus reflect that.
I remember the weeks after we had our first child. Watching Ryan love and parent our new baby made my heart swell. I remember being amazed that I could love him more than I did before, but I really felt my love for him multiply. Then as time went on that baby wiggled its way into the center of our marriage. She didn’t even have to try to. She just consumed all of our focus. It is a constant battle to keep our house marriage-centered and not child-focused.
The child-focused thing is natural and even ok for a little while. I mean you are the mommy. That baby NEEDS you. Your husband is an adult, fully capable of taking care of himself right? But here’s the deal, your hubby needs you too, and over the long-haul, what your children need most from you is that you is for your marriage to be stable. Let me be clear, I believe all of my children’s needs should be provided for. They should be are shown TONS of love. But the foundation of our households should not be built upon a mother’s love for her children, but should rather be built upon healthy marriages that overflow in love for one another and for the children.
No husband should ever be made to feel like a second class citizen to his children. Husbands shouldn’t have to beg for our attention after we shower all our love and affection on our children. God doesn’t command us to become one with our husband and then when our kids come along become one with them too. My ultimate goal as a parent is to raise an independent child who leaves my house and is able to lead a fulfilling, God-honoring life of her own. At that point, it will be my husband and me left. What kind of marriage can we possibly have if I have ignored and neglected that marriage during the 18+ years I had children in my house?
Our children know that mommy and daddy love them with all of our hearts, but they also know that we need time just for the two of us. We “date” regularly. We get away with just one another. Sometimes they whine and complain when we leave them, but I am modeling marriage to them. I want them to have thriving marriages to spouses who prioritize them as well. Most importantly I want them to grow up in a stable family with parents who delight in each other. As their mother, this is truly one of the best gifts I can give them.