I noticed today, ok last Thursday, myself becoming increasingly frustrated with the kids and raising my voice at them. I hate it when I do that. There is a lesson to be learned for me in this, for the long haul about how to remain mindful and present with my children.
Usually when I have a poopy day with the kids I berate myself with little sentences from the monkey mind like, “I suck at this.” “I am the worst Mom on the planet.” “My kids deserve better than me.” “ARRGGHGHHH…expletive, expletive, expletive.”
Today though, I did something else. When I was running a few errands tonight, instead of my crappy self mind talk I usually revert too, I sat and thought about when and why I loose my patience. Is it when they are whining? How about when they are fighting? Why are they fighting? Is it when I am tired? When they are tired? Is it when I have too much on my plate? Is it when we have been consistently busy? Have we lost our rhythm? Have we not had a lot of quality time together recently? Have they had sugar? Have I had sugar? Are they feeling pushed aside? Are they just missing their Mama? Do we need to read a book? Get back to a schedule? Have a day at the zoo?
I found that all of the above was true for today. We have been too busy for my taste, and the taste at least for my little boy who likes rest and recuperation between activities. We all had sugar, we have lost our typical school year rhythm to a crazy summer, we hadn’t spent any quiet family time together in I don’t know how long. We have had visitors for a month. They are incredibly tired and I have too much on my plate, at least today, and I tend to get crazy in my mind thinking of all the things I have to do instead of focusing on the one thing I am doing in the moment.
For now, I think it is useful for my children and our lives together, that I become mindful about what frustrates me, how I can avoid being in short supply of patience, and how I can help them be kind and compassionate too, even when they are void of enough zzzz’s. Instead of plowing through our normal dynamic during difficult times, why not take a few mindful moments to think about how we got to this impasse instead? How can I mindfully navigate a solution? How can I allow myself to put everything aside for a time and sit with them when any one of us is frustrated and work through it.
Why do I ever think the laundry, the dishes, cleaning, blogging, or any other item is more important than that? The long term lesson for myself and my children could be hugely profound if I can put this into practice.
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