Wow, this morning was rough. Boys were pushing every button, and it was one mess or stressful situation after another for the whole 2 hrs it takes us to get out the door. I just couldn’t get ahead of it. I held it together – no yelling or other bad mom behavior – for most of the morning, until the mad rush for the door. Which was harder than normal due to a temper tantrum right on the way out.
I snapped and said something like “you WILL get IN your CAR SEAT” through gritted teeth as I forced my crying 4-yo into the seat. It wasn’t pleasant. I quickly rallied and acknowledged his anger (“are you upset that you couldn’t finish watching that show? I know that’s hard for you, sweetheart”), told him I knew we were both feeling angry and let’s take some deep breaths together.
On the drive to daycare, he calmed down and my anger faded into tears. I felt like a complete failure. I still feel shitty.
Just last night, I read this article, and it really hit home. It makes so much sense – modeling emotional intelligence to your child – when they are out-of-control, you must maintain control. The importance of acknowledging their pain and anger, and helping them understand the primary emotion behind it. I read it, and thought – I WILL DO THIS. Starting tomorrow morning!
It’s days like this that I realize how far I have to go, how much I have to learn, how different it is to read something than it is to actually DO it.
Two ways I could have been better equipped to handle this morning’s chaos: better sleep, and a more sober evening last night. I know that contributed to my sense of overwhelm.
So I’m writing this during the day, to give me more time this evening for settling down in healthy ways (yoga, meditation, reading) and going to bed early.
Wish me luck.
Edited to add:
As part of this exercise, I’d like to add a daily note of gratitude. Although I know it’s not directly connected to sobriety, making it part of this commitment will help me stay consistent.
Today I’m grateful for a husband who was understanding of my failure this morning. His text back? “I’m sorry, sweetheart. I hope yoga tonight helps.” Not only does he understand, but he’ll be putting the boys to bed so I can attend the class. I’m grateful for that.