21 January 2014

In Which I Mostly Handle Things Badly


There are some days when it just seems impossible to get anything right. The children were so excited about the stargazing event at the weekend. And then each one of them in turn melted down over things like "all of the activities being babyish" and our stubborn refusal to "make the clouds go awaaayyy!" In the end, we had to go home early with three of my sweet little people crying (believe me, I did NOT feel much like they were "sweet" at the time).

Rowan has also been using her banshee wail when things aren't going how she'd like them to. This week, the scream has been brought out when I couldn't find her pink pony, when the popcorn wasn't cooking quickly enough, when she wanted Morgan to stop talking to her, when Daddy was at work and she wanted him, and several other occasions. It isn't exactly a rage-scream or a hurt-sad-scream, it's a pure "MAKE THIS HAPPEN NOW!" thing. Unfortunately for her, the universe doesn't bend itself to her will, and sometimes I feel more like slapping her than helping. :( High pitched noise rage. It hurts my ears, and sends me in to a panic. :( I think the best chance for me to keep parenting calmly is going to be earplugs, to be honest.

In the meantime, I'm trying to assume positive intent, and taking myself out of the room when the high-pitched shriek is happening.

Today there was a sibling row over, of all things, the fair sharing of eggs for sandwiches. I got stuck, and ended up backing myself in to a "what I say goes" corner. Over sandwiches. I mean, we're all fine, and didn't exactly fall out over it, but sometimes it's the simple little things that are the hardest to think clearly about. I'm not feeling terribly proud of my parenting skills right now.

There are times when parenting is just plain hard work. I'm doing well, in so many ways. In other ways I'm pretty much improvising, trying really hard, and mostly muddling through. There are days when I scream, and days when I cry, and days when mostly I just laugh at the overwhelming beautiful messy frustrating chaos.

If all I can do is keep breathing, and even remember to laugh at myself occasionally, we're probably doing OK, right?


  1. Absolutely right, and the thing I seem to forget is that life is one long transition for all of us, and its pretty hard at times. Oscar screamed and screamed on Saturday because he didn't want to leave Mine Craft and go into town unless we were buying him a toy (which we didnt), and on the way to the bus stamped in a puddle and soaked himself and screamed all the more. He giggled about his bad mood the next day, with the Sisters at church and told them he was cheered up by the time he got a Burger King for lunch, and he was right, it had fizzled out as fast as it came - 'Infuriating Child' lol

  2. Today I had an inkling of how it must feel to be a toddler. There had been incessant noise all morning, Benedict constantly chatters even when he is thinking! and Pip was off school having been sick on Sunday and therefore on a 48 hour embargo for darkening the school doors ... skool rools not mine!! So she was antsy to say the least. The house was in chaos and all I wanted was to vacuum a rug but folk kept getting in the way, so as I shook out the crumbs, I was also shouting in sync to the beat " Just - shut - up -and- leave- me - al- one!" It was then that I broke into giggles and by the grace of God could see the humour in it all.

    For what it is worth, I do not for one minute think you handle things badly, I have said it before and it really bears repeating, "You do an amazing job with your lovable, crazy, fun filled gang, so don't ever forget it!!"

    Hugs to you and remember in the words of Postman Pat, "Tomorrow is another day!"

    San xx

  3. I find bickering the most difficult thing to deal with. Today I was just so tired after a very early morning and had concluded pretty early that it would be a cosy, quiet sort of day (i.e, recipe for squabbles:) Nola usually tries to win battles by deafening everyone with the highest pitched scream I think I've ever heard! But then they'll all start playing some really detailed imaginative game, or I'll catch them reading together on the bed and everything seems to fall into place in the most magical way. Being a Mama is a roller coaster ride sometimes isn't it :)


Penny for your thoughts? :)