To put things lightly, I have not been the most fun person to be around lately. I have been reacting rather than responding to my kiddos and my husband. The dogs have been driving me bonkers (which is coupled with the fact that I can’t just leave the doors open because WE HAVE GRASS!!…pics to come!)…seriously I’ve been a bear, and I cannot put my finger on the one reason as to what is causing this monster to come out.
I was asking Brian what time he was planning on coming home today, and he asked if he had a deadline. My response was…and I am embarrassed to quote this, but I’m going to…”I might kill your daughter. Does that count?..”, then my real reason was that enchiladas were on the menu for tonight and I needed to know what time to put them in the oven. But that first text was my immediate response…terrible mom moment for sure! And my hubby’s response came like a slap in the face…and one I needed at that moment. He said “Plan on 5. Why do you think she is doing that. Put your SW hat on.”
This initially made me upset, the lack of validation hurt and was absolutely not what I wanted to hear. It was EXACTLY what I needed to hear though! It made me step out of the moment itself and start to think about what her behavior is telling me. And thoughts are continuing to roll in as I type this!
I immediately went into my room and pulled out my “One Line A Day” journal, which is a 5 year memory book that I actually can journal in before I go to bed. It literally only requires a line a day, which usually are filled with funny sayings from Paisley or new milestones from Carson! But today it is filled with a vow. A vow I am making from today on, that I will no longer yell. Not at the dogs, not at my kids. This “mean mommy” that Paisley has referred to me as at times, will no longer be a yelling mommy. She thinks “mean mommy” is whenever I don’t let her do anything she wants to do, but it still doesn’t make me feel good when she calls me that.
What I came to realize after I pulled out of my emotional brain was that Paisley has been “pushing my buttons”, which is more so me reacting than responding to her needs, is that she needs attention. She will do anything to get that need met, and it doesn’t matter if the attention is negative or positive to her little brain. Attention is attention. She hears so often, “hang on” “not right now” “let me change/feed/help/etc. Carson first”. She has had so much change in her young life the past year, and my mommy-radar has missed filling the unease of those changes. I have struggled to make time for her, to make her feel safe and secure, to make her feel special in a consistent manner. All of this contributes to her reacting that way and me losing my mind over the behaviors she’s exhibiting.
Through all my training with inner-city kiddos, this should have clued in quicker. For some reason when it is happening to someone else, it is really easy to help problem solve. When it is happening to you, it requires stepping out of the situation, accepting the reality that the behaviors are a direct result of me as a parent doing or not doing something, then working on problem solving.
The many solutions all start with me, taking care of myself. Does she need redirects? Yes. Does she need more mommy time? Yes. Does she need positive examples and interactions? Yes. None of these are possible until I find balance within myself. Self-care is a real thing and always has to be the starting point. You cannot create and strengthen relationships with others until you have yourself “feeling” your best.
Which is why I am working on a self-care series. So far it is 4 parts and each one will focus on a different way to use self-care. As I go through this series, I am going to work on me. Feel free to join. But this is for me. For me to be a better mommy. For me to be a better wife. For me to be a better friend and neighbor. I have felt so crummy and bummed out the past few days, that it is time to really turn things around. I’m tired of feeling this way and so I am going to change it. (And I have realized that the workouts in the AM are NOT working out. Ha. I value my sleep way too much, so the hubs and I have been working out at night). Give yourself grace. Build yourself up. Seek support from those you trust. This is supposed to fun! All these things will be what get me through.
Stay tuned for some fun tips! Have a fabulous night!!