Linda and I had an argument last night. Like most fights, it was about something unimportant, but with both of us being so stubborn, the car ride back from the breastfeeding class descended into silence, followed by a cold, curt kiss good night once we got home. I know people say that spouses should never go to bed angry, but we’ve been together a long time. Occasionally, a disagreement rears up in which neither of us is willing to concede our position in the name of a peaceful night’s sleep. We go to bed angry, wake up angry, and I go through the day with that uneasy feeling in my gut. The routines of the day might let me forget about it for short periods, but I always remember and my stomach sinks into my shoes.
We talk through it eventually (as we did tonight), and at some point, when the edge of the conversation has softened, one of us will say something to make the other smile. Then I know we’re okay again.
I loathe fighting with my wife, and I'm so relieved when we get to the far side of an argument, but I can’t help imagining how much worse arguing will be when there’s a kid in the mix. I know the disagreement and make-up cycle is part of any healthy relationship. It’s a good thing. If two people live together and never have a disagreement, someone’s probably sailing on the river of denial (or the rapids of repression). I just hate for any kid of mine to have to live through a night of us not talking. Sure, we can make resolutions about never fighting in front of our child, pretending that everything’s fine until we’re alone, but that’s a form of lying I’ve never been very good at. Maybe it’s better for our kid to see their parent’s relationship, unvarnished and genuine, go through all of its natural ups and downs (up to a certain point, of course). Still, who wants to put a kid through that? I’m sure there’s a glut of books out there on this, and maybe when my kid’s old enough to see farther than the length of a ruler, I’ll pick one up, but for now, it’s something I’ll be thinking about.
57 days until baby.