Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Letting Go

Yesterday I called John on his way home from work and kindly said: "WHERE ARE YOU? I QUIT! I'm getting a job tomorrow and I'm going to make money and these little crazy people who live with me are going to day care. All day. And I'm going to request over time,"  And even though I knew deep down I wasn't serious, I sure wished I could be.  I was burnt out. Depleted. Weary. Tired.

Why does Johnny have to jump off everything and land into everything fragile?  Why does he have to yell at the top of his lungs the entire time he is doing said activities?

Where in the world did Caity get that whiney voice? "Joooohnnnyyyyy!" Does she not realize she taunts Johnny and it is only in response he snatches her beloved Meebe?

And William. Why don't you eat? You cry all day long because you're hungry, yet I can't get you to eat anything.

I realize I am just complaining about the very things I thank God for every day...it's complicated some days.

I feel like a helicopter cleaning room after room then starting over again, room after room. Socks, balls, jump rope, doll, batman, socks, ball, jump rope, doll, batman, peach smashed into the floor. Sure the kids help...but I am little OCD and for whatever annoying reason feel the need to go and fix their cleaning.

Then I lose my mind and hole up in my room while my kids are enriching their minds in front of the television.  Yes, I know: parenting fail. But really, it is survival instincts, people. I sit in my room and wallow in my deficiency as a mother yet I don't have the energy or motivation to fix it.

Yesterday I "hit a wall" and I yelled, I cried, I slammed stuff and did all sorts of other things to show I what a calm and collected mother I was.
I was just lovely, yesterday.
I felt frustrated.  I know what I would tell someone else, yet sometimes it is hard to tell it to myself. Are you with me on this one?
I don't have to do everything.
I don't have to do it perfect.
How do you let go of expectations you have yourself? I know I'm the one that sets that unrealistic bar...but how do I even go about making it realistic and right? By "right" I refer to the many priorities that battle each other.  I would list them, but I know to someone else they sound silly.  I guess I have this image of who I want to be and it is dang frustrating that it just doesn't come to me overnight despite how hard I try. So, I blamed the world and let it out on the dishes in the sink, as in- thank goodness they weren't glass dishes!

Such was the emotional mess John came home to yesterday. Bless. His. Heart.  Even in my deepest, most stubborn dark holes I can create, in he waltzes with a big hug and some annoying way to make me laugh.
John was holding William when I went in for a hug and William looked at me with a glare and pushed me away, I tried again and he pushed me away again.  He must have noticed I didn't pick him up despite his protests as I stormed around the house throwing my tantrum.
When it was time for Family Night, John started singing my family night song: "Hey everybody it's family night we're gonna have a really good time- YEAH!" (don't hate) to gather everyone. But because I was feeling pretty melancholy he sang in a sad, monotone voice and despite myself, I laughed.
The kids came in the room and Caity had tears streaming down her face because I had snapped at her for tattling. I apologized and hated myself more for being so self centered.
When I told her it was her turn to conduct Family Night, she swallowed her sobs and in between post-crying hiccups, she stood on the fireplace proudly saying "Welcome to the (hiccup) BEST family night EVER!" Then gave a big proud smile and we all clapped and it was the sweetest thing.  We played red rover and decorated cookies and learned about finding Jesus in the world around us.  It was good, quality time.
After the kids went to bed, John and I talked about a lot of things. I got a blessing and today I am determined to make it work.
I just have to let some notions go.
One thing my blessing said was that more than anything else my kids need to feel my love and they will cherish it their whole lives.
I realized that needed to be my number one.
So, today I have tried to put that first. I wanted to clean my kitchen's breakfast remains, but played on the floor with William instead. I left my house looking like....well....we'll skip that part and hope none of you saw me at Walmart today.   I let the kids hide behind the diaper boxes at Walmart. We (finally) went to Toys R Us so Caity could spend her birthday money. (She bought and umbrella.)  I carried William while pushing a cart full of stuff. I let the kids stop and play with the Thomas the Train display for a good twenty minutes.  I hugged instead of snapped when Johnny threw a tantrum.
I feel better today.
A little emotionally hung over.
A little embarrassed at my irrational behavior.
But I am feeling on the up.
Sometimes you just have to downsize back to the basics.  Sometimes I have to let myself be vulnerable and let it go, then rely more fully on my Savior.
\I think I'll make it another day. Thanks for listening.


Betsy said...

I have a lot of those days!!! Thanks for keeping it real and telling how it really is. We all know everyone has bad days, but it really helps to hear it from other moms. Thanks! And by the way, Eli saw a picture of Johnny and now he wants to be his friend and go for motorbike rides with him :)

Ellen said...

Ah man! So sorry for the less-than-desireable day! Glad you got a blessing from John and that things are going better today. Good luck! Life is good :)

Nate and Chelsea Peck said...

I feel like that a lot too!! Being the mom is hard!!

Lauren and Michael said...

I am so grateful for this post! This post is how a lot of my days go. I need to rely on The Lord more and go back to basics. Thanks Mary! You're a great friend and wonderful mother!

Brittany Brassell said...

you are such a good mom, mary! those kids are lucky to have you. one of the things I love and admire most about you is how deep your roots are.

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