Friday, March 29, 2013

Repost: What parenting has done to my marriage

I've contributed to the Orlando Sentinel's Moms at Work blog since 2010. The blog is changing content management systems and my old posts will no longer be available to the public, so I'm reposting them here, in the order that they were originally posted.


Dec. 15, 2010

I expected that parenting would change my life, but I'm also finding that it's done something interesting to my marriage: my husband and I are learning new things about each other.

Not big things, of course; he hasn't suddenly revealed lost years spent as a pirate or anything. Still, it's nice to learn even a small new thing about someone I've known so long and so well.

This past weekend, as we were at the dining-room table eating dinner, he folded a piece of paper into an origami boat to amuse our fussy daughter.

I looked at him quizzically: "I didn't know you knew origami."

"Oh, yeah," he said. "I guess I haven't thought about it 25 years or more, but my friends and I used to make things all the time in elementary school and I was pretty good at it."

Who knew? Like I said, it's not a big thing, but I had to add a brush stroke to the picture of him that exists in my mind.

I've learned in recent months that he can flawlessly mimic Elmo and Yogi Bear, while he's learned that I can do Piglet and Tigger voices par excellence. We've also had what I call "The Patty Cake Matter," when we realized that we learned completely different versions of common nursery rhymes.

For now, the differences are innocuous. I anticipate more such moments in the coming years and I'm enough of a realist to know that some of them are likely to be complex. Who knows what revelations our daughter's elementary school and teenage years will bring?

Has parenting provided you with any new insights into your partner and/or his or her hidden talents?

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