This week has been exceptionally informational…I realized that I am meant for great things, I am absolutely fearful that no matter what I do I will never have enough money and when your kid refuses to poo none of that matters. Because now my world is consumed by the fact that no matter what I do to encourage her to go, she may be traumatized for life. I am on the cusp of taking a huge leap in my life, I am doing all that I can to put the pieces of my empire together. Every day, according to my day-timer, I am scheduled to accomplish as many tasks as possible that will take me closer to my goals of becoming a successful entrepreneur…and none of that mattered today.
This weekend I had big plans, the side-hustle to-do list was looooong! However my weekend was consumed by the non-existent bowel movements of my child. I am not 100% sure, but pretty positive that my desire to accomplish great things fueled the evil mother in me to come out during my daughter’s unfortunate circumstance. My poor kid…I am sure she deserved a mom who could be compassionate and understanding of the fact that she is experiencing great change right now…the change in routine, going back to school and the ever-present little sister (who I have noticed is getting more and more attention). A mom who, if she listened to the words being shared with her between the whiny fake cries of her four-year old… “I don’t want to poo!!!” would have heard her daughter’s fear of not only potential pain from a long overdue #2 but her fears about growing up and not being “special like a baby”.
“Mommy I want to go back to when I was little and we played all the time…
I want to be small again so that you will cuddle with me”.
I am crying now as I write this…because what I said to her was…”that’s great honey BUT it’s time stop talking and go poo”.
For the past 2 days I have been the least compassionate mom…the list of things I would prefer to be doing running through my mind as my daughter worked herself up into a traumatic frenzy. This is not our first go on this merry-go-round but it is one I had hoped we were done riding. I am tired and I don’t want to blame my daughter for keeping me from doing the work I love and I don’t want the work to keep me from my daughters, who I love. The point of connecting to my Self was to be more present and aware.
What I am aware of is this…
parenting is hard…not for the weak and sometimes not for me.
I wouldn’t say tonight was an epic fail but not far from it. What I will say is that I want to be better. As I listened to my husband’s calm suggestions regarding my behaviour, my outer shell appeared defensive and my inner core was desperate for guidance and support. I have no idea what I am doing and there are 2 little people counting on the fact that I will figure this shit out! Loving them…easy! Discipline (when the clearly f’up)…easy! It’s all the stuff in between that you know is important and there is no clear right or wrong way…and if there is I don’t know it…that is really fucking hard. I am constantly worried about the future trauma they will experience from my parenting…or lack of parenting skills. I think about how hard my mom tried to be a good mom and the fact that I needed therapy professional and self-directed to just come to terms with my experiences.
I believe the reality is this,
we are all going to screw up our kids, the key is to keep the level below a five on the “screw-up scale”.
Between 1-5, parenting fails will be noticed, griped about, and then overlooked when balanced against the love and positive attention received. Once you start getting into the 6-7-8 territory there is a serious need to reflect on our parenting behaviour and our “whys”. We need to start asking ourselves if how we are behaving towards them is in response to our children’s behaviour or in response to our own current behaviour or seeing our worst traits manifesting in them (we feel self-hatred and therefore respond vehemently against it). If you hit 9-10 call in professional help, first for you THEN for your kids…remember what the flight attendant said, “You can’t help your child if you yourself can’t breathe…always put your oxygen mask on first”…get to the root of your own problem before you even think about trying to solve your child’s…who knows their issue might miraculously disappear once you sort your own shit out!
So where am I at…tonight I was hovering around a 7 on the poor parenting scale. I meant well going in but the execution was all wrong. I did take the time to apologize for my behaviour and for not listening when she spoke. I expressed my feelings of trust and support, hoping desperately that she would miraculously get over her fears and just go…that did not happen.
Did I engage negatively in a deeply traumatic event…maybe! Is there any thing I can do to change that…yes. I can work to rebuild a trusting relationship with my daughter where we can work together. Will that mean she will just sit down and poo…not likely…but what it may do is cause her to release the stress that my mere presence was causing her.
What does this mean for the time needed to build my empire…that it will have to wait for another day. Kids don’t wait for you to sort your shit out, they don’t wait for you to finish your email, post to Facebook, finish (or even start) your blog post, nor should they when they need you. They are the ultimate in mindfulness training. They continuously force me to be present and aware of so much more than what is simply happening inside my head and I will be forever grateful for the privilege to take this journey…happy to take a few more spins around the merry-go-round!