I'm nestled in the covers, laying on my side, half-awake, with my thirty pound spaniel mix curled up in the crook of my legs. My husband has been up for at least a half hour already. He arrives smelling like his body wash or shaving cream, laying one of my favorite mugs on the nightstand. The dainty-flowered Starbucks mug or perhaps the one that says "MRS" or Apex Anthologies, any of these options full of steaming hot Trader Joe's Morning Joe or perhaps artificially flavored Kroger Hazelnut. I get a kiss on the head and he announces it is time to wake up.
Out of all of our cooky marital traditions, waking up to "coffee o'clock" is perhaps my favorite. It is simple. It is dear. It has coffee. It is ours.
That was before we had kids.
Now my wake-ups are not so, how should we say it, blissful?
It is a monitor blaring in my ear. It is "MAMA!" It is going from sleep to awake, out of bed, and in full on mom-action in a matter of seconds.
It is my own bladder subject to my apple sized new baby conquering its real estate. It is the fact that no matter how many pillows I have, it is never enough for this creaky, heavy, preggo bod. It is jolting awake from another far-out Salvador Dali like pregnancy dream.
One of these days, I'm going to be able to get up before my son without his spidey-senses knowing I'm awake. I imagine myself having a coffee with Tim, reading my Bible or the news, working out, taking a shower, and feeling like a full fledged human being before entering into Mom-mode.
The reality is that a pregnant lady needs sleep. Waking up before 6 AM just isn't an option for me for right now. So I wake up when Titus wakes up. How does one choose sanity over sleep when ultimately they fulfill the same goal? #Motherhood
But still, when I get downstairs, toddler on my hip, fighting him to keep the glasses on my face, not in his hands, on the floor, in the trash, I smell coffee. Tim has made it. Most of the time I pour my own, but I hardly ever have to make it myself.
Life Truth: Grateful caffeination trumps romanticism in the early baby years.
I'm praying when Bambino comes, that the coffee will still be made. And I'm sure it will. Because I have the most steadfast, loving husband in the entire universe.
How my perspective has changed on the kind of man I want to do this crazy parenting gig with, and every time I think about it, I thank the Lord in heaven that it turned out to be Tim.
I know Coffee O'clock hasn't ended, just morphed a little to work with the life we have now. No, our marriage doesn't look the same as it did before kids, but it doesn't have to. Our marriage isn't taking a back seat, but rather adding a few car seats to the mix.
I do find myself ashamed when I think of the last time I pursued Tim's heart purposefully. At the end of the day, my priorities are usually, "Are the dishes washed? Is my son fast asleep? Are the people in our house church okay? What's next on my list? What's next on the calendar?"
When was the last time my list included, "Does my husband know I love him today?"
You see, my toddler lets me know when things are not okay. Tim hasn't complained a day in his life.
And what of Titus? What is he learning? "More is caught than taught" they say. I believe I would gravely fail my child if he saw me putting my social obligations over loving his daddy, if the dishes were done but divorce was a part of our vocabulary.
I hope instead, Titus sees me pulling a love challenge stick, making his daddy lunch, organizing his daddy's tools and hears me asking, and really listening, how his daddy's engineering projects are going. I pray he sees us making an effort for each other by dating each other and getting away together. I pray Titus knows he is not our first priority, and why.
And when Titus has his own children, I hope he never stops making his wife coffee. Maybe because he learned how to from his daddy. Maybe one of these days Titus will help his daddy bring the coffee upstairs to me. I imagine he will be spilling it all over the white carpet along the way. Or maybe Titus will even learn to make it for me himself, but I know his dad will argue to keep the job.
Our marriage has changed since we've had Titus, but for the better. There is more at stake now if we don't try. We've had to fight for it, make the effort we didn't know we had in us, and keep the coffee brewing.