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Challenge: Romance After Kids

Dear Husband: Do you miss her?

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Sometimes I wonder if you miss her.

Sometimes I see you looking in my direction, and I can't help but conject that you must be eying me -- this worse for the wear, no longer a spring chicken -- with internal disappointment, as you (unadmittedly, of course) pine for her, the one that left you.

Sometimes I question what life would be life for you if she never went away.

Sometimes I postulate that with someone like her -- someone free, adventurous, easy-going, flexible, spontaneous, flirty, fun, young and hot -- you'd be living a better life; one that excites and fulfills you more than your current one which regularly exhausts and frustrates you.

But, then, as if by divine intervention, my self-deprecating and idiotic daydreaming gets cut short when I am swiftly pulled back into my beautiful, messy reality by one of our three rambunctious, but loving as hell children who thinks it is fun to beckon "Mooooommmmmmmmyyyyy" at the top her lungs for a minimum of twenty times in ten seconds on repeat.

on repeat.

on repeat.

on repeat.

And then give me a "wet willy."


I'm back.

Back to the present conversation, and to me focusing on to my tangible and incomparable "presents," or blessings from the Big Guy, which include you -- my handsome forty-year-old hunk of a husband -- and my three endearing charming and hilarious love nuggets.

Sometimes I wonder if you miss her, but that inauthentic twenty-something-year-old with her under-stressed and oddly cheerful demeanor, it would have eventually become boring for the both of you.

Right? It would have.

And, even though sometimes when you look at me, I fear that you must feel let down by your hopes and expectations for all that I could and would be, and bring to your life, you, on your own accord proudly and loudly declare and boast-- to anyone within earshot -- of your endearment for me, appreciation for our journey and your yearning to keep on with the adventure that is us and our life together.

Sometimes I wonder what life would be like for you if she never went away.

Perhaps you would be infatuated with her, but I'm pretty sure she was besotted with herself as well, and that kind of unwavering self-confidence, though appealing at first, would have pretty quickly become an absolute turn-off.

And, while a seemingly serene and untroubled, fun-loving and feisty(ish) firecracker of a woman sounds like every man's dream, you happily and unabashedly confess that your current thirties gal -- the one in the high-waisted leggings, oversized t-shirt (of yours), wet hair and yesterday's makeup -- and the children she helped you bring into this world, have together created this life for and with you; one that is surprisingly and thankfully unlike anything you ever dreamed.

Sometimes I wonder if you miss her, but then I think about how you really have no time to between the four us bombarding you with conversation, affection and a combination of wanted and undesired attention.

Sometimes I question what life would be life for you if she never went away, but then who would lose your socks in the dryer, eat the last of the popcorn, steal your chilled bottled water and drive you up a wall on the regular?

And, let's be real, sometimes my friend, you need for someone to remind you that men can do laundry too, that popcorn is not a food group, that women need water also and that a good life lesson is learning to swerve and pivot on a dime.

So, despite the fact that sometimes when you look at me, I fear that you must feel let down by your hopes and expectations for all that I could and would be and bring to your life, your cozy posture on our kid-stained couch, while you eat from "a plate of art" made for you by your kids, while you giddily recount for me what happened in the last season of Game of Thrones, informs me that you are doing just fine in my company, and by all appearances, are very content.

Content with our life.

Content with our home.

Content with this relationship.

Content with me.

Sometimes I wonder if you miss her, but other times, well, I wonder why it is that I do.

You don't care that she went away because when she did, it opened up space for me to arrive and my arrival, well, according to you, it's been a genuinely and rightfully, imperfect pleasure.

Sometimes I wonder if you miss her, but you avow that you don't, and because of that, I have no reason to either.

So, no more worrying.

If you're not stressing over her departure, I won't either.

I'll go back to doing what it is that I do best at 9:30pm on any given night, and that's fourth meal.

Winner, winner, time for second dinner!

(Twenty-something me would never admit to having a second dinner. It's no wonder you like aged me better.)

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