I am not fashion icon for sure, but I do feel quite kitchy in this felt J.Crew Hat. I got this hat on clearance last year and ended up paying like $2.00 for it. AND IT’S J.CREW! Anyway, a blog that just said, “overnight oats” didn’t seem too interesting to me, so I added some flair. It’s me. I’m the flair. And can i be honest a second? When I got up this morning, I totally did my make up big time – because I am unsure what is going on with my outfit. I have on a vest, a tshirt, a ball skirt, and flip flops.
Well, I’ve been super busy. Working full time, taking a full load of college classes, trying to have a personal life – so blogging hasn’t been at the top of my list. But making things as easy as possible and staying organized? That has definitely been at the top of my list. I am a crunchy, granola, type of chick, so I stumbled upon overnight oats in my pinterest search for a healthy and easy breakfast.
This is the mother load. The best thing ever. The easiest thing ever. And all my people like it. I am going to give you the recipe, and you can send me all the undying love that you have to give, because it’s just that good. Remember, I am gluten and dairy free, so if you want the gluten and dairy knock yourself out.
1 cup of Silk Almond Milk Original Unsweetened
1/2 cup of Siggi’s plant based Greek Yogurt Plain
1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Oats
1 tsp of Vanilla Extract
1 tbsp of Honey
1 tbsp of Chia Seeds
Dump in a mason jar, put the lid on it, and stick in the fridge overnight. Breakfast is ready in the morning when you are. Get your favorite toppings, put on top, and Viola! My faves are peanut butter and frozen blueberries, my guys favorite is peanut butter and fresh strawberries. You could do coconut, chocolate chips, trail mix, you name it.
Now, here another great idea with it. Put some local bee pollen in it. I tried to get my guy to drink bee pollen because he has wicked allergies and it helps, but he hated it. Put a tablespoon in there – and he can’t even taste it!
So, I hope you enjoy this as much as I do! If you have some favorite toppings, or a different way to make it, let me know. I am always up for fun recipes. And… stay tuned… I am going to have some fun DIY’s coming up, if I ever get a minute… LOL!
Love Fully. Live Fully. Shine On. And girl, be brazen.
I don’t know which way makes a bigger statement. Well, whichever it is – read it that way. This year has been something else – to say the least. But what I want to talk about, is how I lost my happy place. Because I dare bet, if I feel this way, others do too. And sister (or brother), you aren’t alone.
I am talking about my home. Now, I am an essential worker, so during the pandemic – I went to work everyday. I am super grateful for that. I had my job, my paycheck, whole nine. So I didn’t lose my physical home, but I lost what was my place of peace. The place that I go to and relax. The place where I am happy to be. The place, where there is laughter, gratitude, and family. My home made me proud. It was private spot. Very few people have ever came to my home. I revere it. So if you have been in my home, you are special, LOL! But honestly, I wanted my kids to feel loved and protected in their home – and most importantly safe and happy.
My safe place turned into a bunker. An armory. A place to hide. While at home, I saw my kids plans fizzle out the window. A trip to Chicago – dashed. A trip to Austria – gone. Playing with their friends? Nope. Going out to dinner? Shut down. Home didn’t become a safe place of happiness – it became a bunker. Don’t get me wrong, if we are at war, an underground bunker is what we all want, right? I’d be jumping into that sucker before anyone. But during this – when you are starting to be afraid of the outside? That doesn’t seem too homey.
It started out fun, right? Like – no school. Or no “real school”. It was almost like summer started a little early. But then we got into it more. We couldn’t go to the parks. No family weekend fun exploring our city. We became four people – living under one roof – in our own rooms. My youngest two started bickering more and more. My youngest – was sad. He wanted to play with his friends. He wanted to go to school. He wanted to go.
We took for granted running into Starbucks and getting a coffee on Saturday morning. Even that seemed scary and diffiuclt. There were so many unknowns. Memorial Day – happened at home. Fourth of July – happened at home. Birthdays? Yep. You guessed it. Home. Home turned from a safe place to a makeshift jail cell.
Now? Home is school. Home isn’t home in our family’s sense. I want to speak to all the single parents out there, also. Especially the ones with little kids. I am sorry. I hear your struggle. I am praying for you. This is hard enough for me, and I have a support system. My job is amazing. My daughter who is doing virutal school also is 17, so she can help the 10 year old. I have cameras in my house so I can observe. My co -workers understand my plight. I cannot imagine. CANNOT IMAGINE. How scary it would be to have kids virtual learning – and really feeling as if you pick your kids or working. This is a decision that some parents are having to make.
On the flip side, I see a lot of parents being allowed to work from home. Creating learning stations in their homes – complete with laptops, markers, paper. Shoot, it looks like Chip and Joanna designed these learning stations! And these folks are relishing in the opportunity to spend more time at home. Time with their kids. And are ready to do this home school thing. And some of my friends who are seeing this as their new normal, that plan for this to be a lifestyle change – has said that they didn’t appreciate being home before. I think that is the issue for me, I did.
People like to talk about new and exciting things. Positive things. I am one of those people.
We like to talk about how something that was once bad, yes has turned into something beautiful.
We like to talk about the fear, the scariness, but how we have overcome. And now? We can speak positivity into our situation.
We like to smile, and see the learning centers, and relish in the small successes in the pandemic.
While these are all amazing things, they can leave some of us, who are still struggling with the messy parts feeling like they’re “ungrateful” or “weak” or “a bad parent” because they can’t handle it as gracefully.
And I see you.
I see those who can’t see the bright-side still, even though they are trying so hard. Some folks came out of this situation better. Some came out a little bitter.
I see all the tears. The sobbing guilt as you leave your kids to fend for themselves because you have to work. The tears of your children who want to just play. I see the tears that you cry in your closet so no one else in your home sees them. I see the tears you cry – because you read the posts that say, “HOW ARE PARENTS SENDING THEIR KIDS TO SCHOOL! THEY ARE SO SELFISH!?” and “WHY WOULD YOU MAKE A KID WEAR A MASK! IF THEY NEED MASKS, THEY SHOULDN’T BE AT SCHOOL!”. I see you cry, because you only want what is best for your family. But every choice you make – you get disapproval from someone.
I see the anger. The hair pulling. Teeth clenching. Sitting in your backyard just wanting to run away as far as you can. From everyone. No, not everyone. To a time machine. Forward or backwards. Either one. Because one more minute of this seems too much to bear.
The pandemic is ugly. The injustices are ugly. Getting through this psychotic time does not have to be beautifully poetic. It just doesn’t.
You are strong. You are resilient. You are still going. Don’t let Facebook, society, or anyone – make you feel ashamed or less than because you didn’t maneuver your way through this the way people think you should.
First of all, let me make a disclaimer. I am high maintenance – I know this. But in the scheme of things, when it comes to holidays and whatnot – I am not. I’m serious.
I really just wanted a happy day.
Well let me tell you about this weekend. It was trash. Complete and utter trash. It was so trash – that when people asked me how my Mother’s Day was at work? I said, “Tough weekend.” I can’t even lie and do the polite and southern, “I’m fine.” It was anything but fine.
It started out crappy Friday around noon. Homeschooling is wrecking my life. Constant phone calls of he said/she said. My 17 year old and 10 year old live in a state of who can tattle on the other soonest. And it is met with a barrage of phone calls. Anyway, the 10 year old calls – and I am already annoyed at the 14th call of the day. It’s noon – btw.
“Mommy!” he said. “Yes, Jacoby,” I muttered in my most fear inducing, angry, but I am at work and am unable to scream like I would like to do.
“BELLA BROKE HER TOE!”
“Sure she did. Let me talk to her.” He proceeds to put her on the phone. She is calmer than I anticipated, and said told me she thought she did. I told her to tape it together, because she probably just stubbed it – but just in case. And they don’t do anything for broken toes, anyway. We talked about Covid-19 and how we don’t want to go to the doctor during this junk, anyway. I tell her to ice it, take motrin, and call me if it gets worse.
I get home. Her foot looks like the Star Trek hand signal. You know, the “Live Long and Prosper” thing. Girl. That thing was displaced. She doesn’t want to go to the ER, so we make an appointment for urgent care the next day at 8:30 am.
It’s broken. And had to be set. She is in a walking boot. Can we say mom fail? Ugh. I should have taken her the day before. And it kept going downhill from there.
Now, let me give some credit. Bella created the sweetest sign. Got me balloons and some gift cards and candles. She’s so sweet! And my oldest, he got me a gift also, though I don’t know what it is yet – because it got delayed in shipping. It wasn’t the stuff that made it bad. It was mother’s day disappointment.
I psyched myself up with the expectation that because all I wanted from the kids was a clean house, and some time to chill out – that would be what I would get. And everyone would chip in to make it happen, because it’s only one day, right?
No one wanted to do anything. But argue. And cry. And tattle. And cry. And argue. Repeat. OH! Did I say argue? Throw in yelling. Then crying. I actually woke up to screaming. It was great.
You want to know what happened? Hidden expectations. And as hard as I tried to stuff them down in the trenches of my soul – the were spewing everywhere. By Sunday afternoon, they had splattered all over the floor, and suddenly I was in a sad state of self-pity. I felt so self righteousness that everyone should appreciate that I am not greedy, and do the small thing I asked. But – I’m a mommy. It doesn’t work that way. Just because Hallmark called in a holiday, doesn’t mean that kids are going to stop being kids, or that I get permission to not be a parent.
So now what do I do? On my 21st mother’s day – I am setting and adjusting my expectations. Or any other holiday for that matter. I really did want to be spoiled on Mother’s Day. I wanted me-time. I wanted food that I didn’t cook. I wanted peace and quiet. And yes, I did want presents. And I am grateful for them.
On a more heart-felt note: This past year I spent time with a mom who lost her child. I, myself, have struggled fighting lupus and other medical stuff. There are moms out there who are battling for their lives – or even their children’s lives.
Hello freaking perspective: This makes me slow WAY down and realize that when it all comes down to brass tacks – all I really want to do is love and hug and kiss and squeeze those babies that made me a mom. I want to spend time with the people who help me raise them, and love them like their own.
So , maybe I need to keep that healthy perspective in the front of my mind. This way, I will be able to see the true importance, and kiss them all to pieces, and be satisfied with that. No gift, no clean house, no quietness- can make up the fact that these people are my tribe. My posse. My really small gang. And we always gotta work together everyday. Family doesn’t get a vacation because a holiday – nor does parenting. And I am so grateful for these three wild kids running around on this planet. And I wouldn’t trade one second with them for anything.
So, I am not going give you a cute photo of all of us on Mother’s day. Because it didn’t happen. But hey, I got to see Bella’s bones. So that was cool. LOL!
As you may already know, I have three beautiful children on this planet. The youngest of which, is Jacoby. Let me tell you about Jacoby. He’s 10. He’s wild. He’s full of energy. And sass. Jacoby is one of the sweetest most loving people I have ever met. And he is definitely the hardest of my three to parent.
Our word of the quarantine is “boundaries”. Why boundaries, you ask? Because this little guy doesn’t know any.
He’s ten, and this little guy will walk into my bedroom like he owns it. He gets grounded from YouTube (yes, I grounded him from YouTube) – and I catch him watching it. I ask him why he was watching it when he knew he was grounded? “Because I was bored.” He is remorseful. He tells the truth when he is wrong. But in the moment – this kid does what he wants to do. And it’s maddening. It’s brutal. It makes me want to pull my hair out from the literal root.
I have yelled. Cried. Screamed. Prayed. Phoned a friend. And did it all again. And again.
I have now enlisted a checklist for him. What his expectations are morning, midday, and evening. We talk about personal space. We talk about earning privileges. We talk about what it means to have to wait. We talk about the law, the speed limit, rules, and why they exist. We talk about being a good human. And, exactly how that looks.
And, he seems to like the structure. Knowing what is expected. I actually took photos of his room – clean – and laminated them. So he can have a visual as to what it means. And I also added three times of exercise. No just playing outside. Intentional exercise.
We talked about him being an adult. Being a father. A husband. How he would have to take care of other people like mommy takes care of him. That you have to understand the biggest gift you can give is your respect and being trustworthy. Then, all things will fall into place.
So, do you struggle with this whole “I am a mom, teacher, breadwinner, care-taker, disciplinarian, and please don’t let my child turn into a felonious nightmare…. ” all while maintaining a good hair style, make-up on , clean house, etc. It can be a lot. But let me tell you – when I kiss that little guy good night, he is worth every single grey hair on my head. I mean, that’s what bleach is for , right?
I’m gonna tell this story completely Sophia Patrillo style.
Picture it. Orlando Florida. November 5, 2019. Back in February, I had made plans to do the “Eat to the Beat” with my oldest son, for the Boys 2 Men Concert. I had completely forgotten about it, until two weeks before, when I got a reminder email. And when I got that email – I was soooo stoked! You know, it was like a little gift you got yourself, but you had forgotten about it. It was awesome.
*Backstory – Eat to the beat is a dining experience at Epcot here in Orlando. You go have a nice dinner at one of the Disney Restaurants, and then you get preferred seating to the show. For Boys 2 Men, that’s a big deal.
I tell/remind Tariq about it. He is excited, but not to the extent I am. He is more excited about eating at the Spice Table in Morocco at Epcot than the concert. He’s only 20, remember this. Anyway, we leave work around 2 pm, and head out to Epcot. And let me tell you – I am super excited. Like super excited. We walk around, and then show up at the Spice Table for our 4:15 reservation. And it was amazing.
The food – delicious. The company – impeccable. I mean, everything was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. We had a seat sitting at the lagoon, which was super cool, too – we watched the boats go back and forth, people riding over – it was great.
Once we are done, we walk over to the American Theater, and get in line for the show. It’s the 6:45 show, so it is dark. The gates open… and we are in. And can I tell you – I literally had the best seat ever. It was perfect.
Then, It begins to sprinkle. And then, a full on monsoon. Did I mention that the American Theater is an amphitheater? No? Well, it is. Luckily, I was one of like 5 rows that were covered. We watch, while people are scurrying to get covered up in their ponchos, shopping bags, or whatever they could find. Then we hear the announcement.
Ugh. I felt for the soaking wet people. This happens for about 10 minutes. Then… the whole crowd starts singing… “End of the Road”. And it was awesome. Some of the guys (set up guys) come out on stage and are filming this crowd singing in a complete monsoon. It was kinda great. A group of strangers united, and sung together, just from their heart and to get through the storm, (and I’d say the physical and emotional). Just as another announcement begins to start, BOYS 2 MEN WALK OUT.
Ok, One of the best moments ever in life. Shawn, Wanya, and Nathan walk out. And what are they singing? End of the Road. And it was amazing. Wanya looked at me one time while he was singing. My son was cracking up because he saw his 42 year old momma being a fan girl. And the night was now in full swing. Until the end of the song, that is. And Shawn says, “I am so sorry guys, Disney has cancelled the show, but we had to come out and sing one song for you guys.” B.L.O.W.N.
But then, my son was like, “That is so awesome that they came out and did one song! I get why you love them so much! The are so talented, and that’s so great that they came out in a storm for their fans! I am a Boys 2 Men fan now!” To be honest, his positivity was a touch annoying to me, but hey – I wasn’t going to make it worse by calling him out on it. So, we start our hike out to the car. And it’s storming.
Key info – the American Theater in Epcot – is literally the farthest point away from the gate. So we had a hike to go. And it was storming. And it kept storming. More and more. Once I got to Spaceship Earth, I was falling out of my shoes. So, I had to carry those. So yes, I left Epcot – soaking wet. Makeup running down my face. Barefoot. I literally did a walk of shame out of Disney.
We were at that point, where you don’t even walk fast anymore. You just walk in the torrential downpour that you are in, because it won’t help. And I wanted to cry. I was disappointed. I wanted to see Boys 2 Men. I wanted to have some great memories with my kid, who is a grown man. The older he gets, the more I cherish these times- because I know how fleeting they are.
We get in the car, and my eyelashes have literally fallen off my face. Not my originals… LOL…. the fake ones. I look over at my son and he cracks up. And he says, “This night was great! I will never forget it!” And it hit me. I couldn’t see the forest for the trees.
What did I want? A great dinner, a memorable night, to see Boys 2 Men, and go home happy. What did I get? Just that. And when I reflected back on it – it was nothing what I thought it would look like. It was even better. My son gained an appreciation of one of my favorite groups ever – because they came out and did a song when they weren’t supposed to. My dinner was great. I will never forget walking soaking wet through Epcot barefooted. It wasn’t how I pictured, at all. But it was great. Life seems to be that way.
There are times, that we don’t see how awesome something really is, because it isn’t what we thought it would look like. I am not where I thought I would be at 42. But I am learning, that this is exactly where I am supposed to be, in this moment. And just because things are not what “your plan” was, doesn’t mean that where you are isn’t exactly where you need to be to project yourself to best potential.
So, Boys 2 Men, you are still my fave. And, I will make it to see you again – but it will be hard to top this memory.
Sitting back and thinking about it, I probably should have put this as the first part – buy hey. Here we are. You really want to know how I do it all? The big, huge, deep and dark secret?
I don’t. I don’t do it all.
It might seem like a lot to you, but if it seems like a lot-I am betting that it is our “all” is different. Maybe you are carting kids and their friends to ball practices, recitals, and maybe working four jobs. Who Knows!?! But, I bet – our all is different.
Let’s start with an important aspect to me. I have some health issues – and sometimes, my energy is in the toilet. Complete and utter exhaustion. I feel mentally foggy, physically lethargic, and all in all – just want to nap. Now, those times are much farther spaced now, because I have learned to take control, and not over do it. I know my capabilities, and if my energy is on the lower end of the spectrum- I don’t drain it any further by overexerting myself. I have to take care of ME so I am capable of taking care of those I love. And sometimes that requires me to say, “I’m sorry baby, but I can’t go out to dinner tonight. I know I said that I would, but I am really exhausted and I want to stay healthy for you!” Does it suck? Sure. It is also a hard lesson learned, because I wanted to ‘follow through’ on a promise when I wasn’t able, I end up stuck in bed all weekend long. Luckily – I haven’t had one of those in months!
A key aspect to doing this with grace? Let all of the guilt go. You have to take care of you – to be the best for those you love. Let me tell you something, write this down Tattoo it on your forearm. Write it on your mirror. Memorize it. WHEN GUILT LEADS, YOU TRY TO PLEASE EVERYONE. THE IRONY? YOU PLEASE NO ONE, ESPECIALLY YOURSELF.
So let’s use the dinner situation above as an example, shall we? Let’s say I go. I feel like utter crap, but I go. I’m slow. I am sitting, watching the clock, wanting to leave. I try to engage in conversation – but remember, there’s mental fog. It’s a struggle for me, which becomes a struggle for my company. No one is having a good time.
On the flip side, what if I say, “I don’t feel like it – but can you come over and sit in bed with me and we can order take out?” I say that, because that has literally happened. A few times. LOL! Please understand, there is a difference between being a flake, and taking care of yourself, too! If you are a person with commitment remorse, buck up once you commit. Because honestly, you probably need to get out for your mental health!
Give yourself grace. My friends will laugh when they read this – because I say that all the freaking time. But it’s true. I still suck at it. I beat myself up way too often. And often times, If a friends told me the same thing I was beating myself up for – I would be much more loving and patient. One thing that I beat myself up over? My kids extra curricular stuff. Tariq, although he is an adult-ish, I love to go to his performances. He is my kid. Bella and Jacoby – same. I want them to look out in the audience, and see momma. To know that momma is always there and cheering them on.
Last year, I missed one of Bella’s concerts? Why you ask? Long story short – Jacoby made a poor life choice, fell out of a tree, and I was in the ER. Good reason to miss, right? Of course. It took me about two months to get over it. No joke. I felt horrible.
Two weeks ago, Tariq sung in an event downtown. I had planned on going, but I was so tired, and it was a huge convention. Tariq is telling me to stay home. He said it was so short, it would take me longer to park and walk there than what I would hear. So, I stayed home. It was the right choice. I still had guilt. I had to talk myself through it.
To sum it up. There are some things you have to do. Laundry. Groceries. Work. There are other things that you have to do also – like kids activities, dating, vacations, relaxation, etc. Some days – you might need to let the laundry go, and go out on that date. Do the laundry tomorrow. It’s fine. Don’t feel guilty about it. I mean honestly, the crap is gonna get dirty again anyway.
So, I guess I just changed my mind again. I do – do it all. I just do it all on different days, different phases, and to my ability. I wrap myself in grace, I make sure that my energy and activities match, I know what I have to do, what I want to do, and then I try to arrange it.
Listen, we are never going to live in a “there is time for everything utopia”, it’s not gonna happen. Nor, or we going to be able to add more hours to our day. So, let’s make every hour the best we can for that moment, and go to bed, happy and content, and not running through all we didn’t do.
I was asked that question the other day, and it caught me off guard. “How do I do what?” And this was her response – “Everything. You do everything. I feel like I deserve an award if I get up before 7. “
And I laughed and laughed. Because, to be honest – how do I do everything? I don’t. I don’t even do half the things. But then, I thought about it – and I am quite productive, when I choose to be. So, I decided to make a guide, to help you out. Or at least, give you some ideas!
Do I have it all together? Of course not. Somedays, I feel like I am hanging by a thread. But, for the most part, I do have some tricks and tips, to help you out, and make your life easier. And these things are great for single parents, kids, teenagers, or anyone who just wants a little more calmness in their life.
I make a to-do list every Sunday. Then, I make another one each day. It might be during my lunch break, it might be when I wake up. But, before I leave work for the day – There is one done. On my Sunday one, I have everything that will fill up one sheet of paper. It’s everything that is practical and impractical – for now. So consider it a wishlist/to-do list.
On my Sunday list, for this week, I’ll give you a few examples.
Check the PUBLIX Bogo’s for next week and the matchups.
Write a minimum of two blogs.
Go Zip Lining in Costa Rica
Make sure Bella has all her stuff for retreat.
Read Gabrielle Bernstein’s next book – (it’s not out yet)
Dr. Appointment on Thursday
And that’s a tiny little example. It’s a full page. Some things make me laugh, and some things have to get done. Now I picked the ones I did, for example purposes. Once you have it all written down. Fold it up and stick it in your planner. What? You don’t have one? Ok. Get a planner. My fave is the MEL ROBBINS 5 SECOND JOURNAL. It’s my favorite by far. If you decide to adapt my way of planning, it will be yours also.
Next step, GET UP THE NEXT MORNING WHETHER YOU WANT TO OR NOT. DO NOT HIT SNOOZE. GET UP. GET UP. GET UP. And if you do that, you got time to make your daily to-do list. So, let’s pretend you didn’t hit snooze, you are up, and you are making your list. I break my list down into three groups. The first being – 1. The crap I have to do before I go to bed that cannot wait another day list. The second, is the Stuff I would like to get done today, but if I don’t the world won’t end – list. Third is the – Stuff I have to do everyday, but I am forgetful so I make a list, list.
So, for today, I have three things that I have to do on list one. Don’t make a ton of stuff on that one. It will make your life overwhelming. But have discipline, to knock out some of the others, so everything doesn’t end up on list one. My three things are, 1.) Mail my package from poshmark. (If you sell on poshmark you get it, you want to get it out ASAP). 2.) Install lock on refrigerator at work. 3.)Work on Stuff for presentation. I will not go to bed until those are done.
On list two, I have 1.)Get Bella’s stuff she needs for retreat 2.)Write two blogs 3.)Work on adding clothes to my poshmark closet. 4.)Clean the downstairs bathroom. 5.)Write for 15 minutes. 6.) Research new recipes. And there’s a few others, but you get the idea.
ON list three, and don’t laugh – I have memory issues people. But here’s a few. 1. make bed 2. brush teeth 3. pack lunches. 4.start dishwasher if needed. 5. make sure all laundry is in basket. 6. water plants. 7. get the mail, with a few others.
Now, I get up early, so I go to bed around 9:30. I have an alarm set to review my list, at 8 pm. Then, I will have time if needed to get some things done I forgot. Now, If I don’t get all my list two items done, they might carry over on list two for a few days. But, on Thursday – If I don’t have Bella’s items for retreat done, it will hit list one. Because she goes on retreat on Friday.
This helps me plan and task my day. And I go to bed feeling productive, and wake up – not in overwhelm. That’s the way my lists work.
As not to overwhelm you on this, I will stop here for now. Next blog – Groceries and Dinner. And how I kill it. LOLOL!
Being a parent is tough. Hardest job I have ever done. And my day job is to make people happy who have wrecked cars. Being a momma – much harder.
I am an emotional person. I can be all over the place. Ask those who know me the best. What I consider my worst trait, is my capability to go zero to 100, in a matter of seconds. I am a perfectionist, who likes things done a certain way. I am Southern, so I was raised with manners. And being defiant, makes me wanna lose my mind. You want to know how I have handled lack of any of the above in my kids? I have yelled and grounded – normally in that order.
Now, luckily – my kids are pretty good. I have had no major issues (knock on wood). But one day, a year or so ago, a friend of mine heard my correcting my little guy. He said, “Relax. You are louder than he is, and you are telling him to stop being loud. He probably doesn’t even know what you are saying.” If we are being honest here, I was mad. One, opinion wasn’t asked for. Two, my kids are good and this is why. That being said, I couldn’t ‘unhear’ what he said.
Then it hit me. My heart got broken, long story – so we won’t get into it. But anyway, there I was, broken hearted. It was the type of broken heart, where I couldn’t even cry correctly. Snotty nose, crying hiccups, and really – wailing out loud. I was trying to will myself to shut up. I wanted to pull it together. I couldn’t. And guess what? The next time my little guy started screaming and crying, I remembered what it felt like to be out of control in sadness. And for the first time, I didn’t raise my voice in response.
I calmly told him he can cry, I hugged him, and when he pulled it together – we talked. I asked him why he was freaking out. He said because he knew he would be grounded, because he disobeyed. And he was sad. Well, I told him he was right. He would be grounded – because he had to listen. He teared up again, and I told him he could cry if he needed , too. The best way to stop, though? Just obey the rules. He sniffled some. Then he hugged me, and we moved on. I didn’t feel like I was about to have a heart attack, and he seemed a little more understanding.
I practice it a lot more. Sometimes I have to step away before I speak, because I still can get to 100 pretty quick. That hasn’t changed. It’s just the speed that opening my mouth that has. I mean, I love them and want the best for them – so I gotta keep myself in check.
I think it’s hard to remember, that just because they are little – doesn’t mean their emotions aren’t big. You and I might know that what they are going through will pass. They don’t know that yet. And newsflash – it means nothing when we tell them it will. So whether it’s sadness, fear, disobedience, whichever. Let’s work on taking care of these little people’s emotions. Cause this word is hard sometimes – and it doesn’t care about your size.