Today I worked hard to see my kids as people. I wanted to work on treating them the way I would like to be treated. That was the pray and goal of the day. I wouldn’t want someone up in my face asking me “WHY ON EARTH DID YOU JUST…” So, I used my inside voice, and took lots of deep breaths, and yes, said many prayers.
I also made note of when I was starting to feel overwhelmed. What was happening? Why do I feel this way? Can I stop this before it escalates? Guess what? I could stop the feelings, I could figure out why I felt that way, and I could let it go. It was very empowering. For example: it was this morning after breakfast… Well, 2nd breakfast… Riley has occupational therapy on Wednesday mornings at 8A.M. which we all have to get to. So, we had snack bars on the way there with Capri suns and cereal when we got home. Ephram was fussing and I was starting to feel frustrated at the kids for making messes. I took a deep breath, and thought about the WHY. Did the mess really matter? No, we can clean that up. Why is Ephram upset? He’s hungry and tired. He needs to nurse and take a nap. Why is this bothering me so much? Oh, that 4:30 A.M. feed is getting to me today and allergies are kicking my butt. It’s not really the kids’ fault that I feel this way. So let’s not take it out on them, right! Good Super Grover Mommy! Put a fun show on for the kids, take the baby upstairs and feed him while dozing in the nice soft chair.
Did this make me a better mom? Why yes it did.
I had to do the last of the grocery shopping today too. We had two stops to make: one the the pet store and one to (shudder) Wal-Mart. I HATE going to Wal-Mart. It’s always crowded and hard to navigate around with my 4 kids. The pet store was a good test run. Beka hadn’t brought her shoes and had to ride in the cart. This meant she was constantly standing up and leaning over. The old me would have gone hoarse yelling at her to sit down. The new me (reigning in the crazies) took lots of deep breaths and gave her a job. She was to hold the doggie’s treats and keep them safe. We got to look at the birds, small animals, fish and the cats. Everyone had fun and everyone (including mommy) behaved themselves.
On to Wal-mart… Emma was done! Just plain, I want to go home, my legs are tired and I’m hungry, why can’t we just leave, done. She was fussing before we even got into the store. Big breath in, and let it out. Silent pray: Please Heavenly Father, help me keep my temper in check. Let me not yell at Emma. Or hang her from the roof by her toenails…
I knelt down to her level and said: Emma, I know you are tired and hungry. I understand that you really don’t want to go shopping. But, we are going to go. You can decided how this trip will go for you. If you are a good girl, and help Mommy out, this trip will go fast and we can get home for lunch. If you CHOOSE to be nasty, it will take longer and Mommy will not have the energy to make a good lunch for you. So, what do you think? Do you want a yummy hotdog with a bun, some pear slices and a drink? And should we use the special lunch baskets to put them in? We might even have some fruit snacks too. What do you say?
She took some breaths and said “Ok, mom.”
It wasn’t easy, but I made it though shopping without yelling at anyone.
We took a walk after dinner tonight. We only need 3 band aids for bloodied up knees… sigh, but we made it to the park. The kids ran and dug in the sand while I pushed Ephram in the swing.
Happiness is swinging on swings! We came home and got ready for bed… Bedtime is one of the hardest time for me. I’m getting really tired, the kids are tired or wired, and often hubby isn’t home. Hubby not being home is one of the hardest parts… and I’m realizing that this makes me grumpy. And it’s not the kids fault that daddy isn’t home. So, I shouldn’t take it out on them! Way to go Super Grover Mommy!
So with this knowledge (and knowing Hubby wasn’t going to be home in advance helped) I prepared myself for the last big push. It was going pretty good until I found my haircutting scissors in the girls’ room… and no one would own up to taking/using them. OH, and they were icky sticky. This was really hard to keep my temper under control. But I did. After all, kids are kids. No one got story time tonight.
It has been interesting to be aware of myself the last couple of days. Seeing my triggers and working hard to take control of them. And holding a prayer in my heart. A specific pray: “Please let me not yell at my kids. Let me be aware of what is really going on.” The atmosphere in my home has improved. I’ve been reading in Proverbs the last couple of days. It really has struck a chord in me.
So, just keep swimming and breathing and praying.
I CAN change my world one day, one moment, one choice at a time!