It was a hard day today. For me and my children. The hardness of the day was really just the result of a terrible week disintegrating into an emotionally charged heap of dust. Each night this week, at some late hour, I found myself mentally collapsed with all of my thoughts folded on top of each other like a damp newspaper.
This morning I could not get unfolded, unstuck, or undone from my sleepless night and achy body.
I was a mess, off kilter from the moment I opened my eyes. And you moms know how it is, if mama is off kilter, everyone is off kilter. I found myself taking it out on the kids, by harping on their every transgression and getting angry for their inability to operate in my disorganization and chaos. I woke up late and they got scolded for moving to slowly. I forgot to oversee my 7 year old take his medicine and then yelled at him when he couldn't get himself together in order to get dressed. My off-kilter self actually attempted a visit to the pediatrician all with a overly hyper and sensitive 7 year, a Chatty Kathy (and whiny) 5 year old and a 9 year old with an absolute bona fide terror of needles. And it was vaccination and flu shot day.
I was bad-tempered and insensitive.
There was a moment in the Dr's office, where my daughter was pulling on my jeans saying, "mama, mama, mama,mama, mama" over and over again. My usually super brave and try anything 9 year old was starting to hyperventilate because the nurse came in with the needle, and my 7 year old was pretty much rolling on the floor wearing nothing but a pair of jeans. Nothing - he forgot to put underwear on. Generally I can pull it together and whip everyone into shape. Today, I sat down, bowed my head and covered my eyes and started crying. It startled my children to silence. Almost. But before the first string of tears hit my chin, I was up, wiping my eyes and pulling a 71 pound boy onto my lap to hold him as he got his shot. I answered my daughter's burning question and managed to coerce my 7 year old to put on his shirt and shoes. Then, in a instant we were off to the boy's Halloween Parade and Party.
We made it through the rest of the day with only a few more tears. Most of them occurred when I told my husband about how terrible I was to my children.
It was my night to put the kids to bed. Instead of our regular routine, I crawled into bed next to my 7 year old, hugged him and told him how sorry I was about the day. He gave me a big soft sleepy hug in return and started to tell me how sorry he was. I stopped him short and told him that he didn't have to apologize for a thing. Why should he have to apologize for being 7? I could feel all the anxiety melt from his body. Being around me had put him on pins and needles. I saw from the corner of my eye, my oldest pop his head over the side of the bunk.
I climbed the ladder and slid into his bunk. I didn't have to say much, he was just happy I was there. I had been forgiven the moment I placed my bare foot on the bottom rung of his bunk bed ladder. It was a hard day, one I helped create...and I'm sorry for pulling my children into my anxiety ridden whirlwind. But at the end of the day, but my boys forgiveness gave me a soft landing.