My Mission Statement

I write to serve, to unite, to educate. I write to share literature and flesh out ideas that may be of interest to others. I write to document an emotion, experience, or a blip in time. My mission is to write in such a way that the reader is reminded that we can find humor in all situations. It's one of the great blessings of life.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Where Did I Go Wrong? My Morning Rant

At what point did I screw this up? I can't quite trace it back although it could have been the day my child woke me up and 'reminded' me that she was supposed to bring Bahamian food that day. Or it might have been the times that my YS wanted to wear the same two pairs of pants over and over because they didn't have snaps or buttons. At any rate, somewhere somehow I began working for the kids in the morning. Like a personal slave. Mom, get this. Mom, where's that? Mom, I'm out of money in the cafeteria, and I need some more today. Mom, you woke me up too late. Mom, I don't like cranberries in my muffins. Mom, I have no clean pants. Mom, where are my shoes? Mom, do I have art/OM/soccer today? Mom, where's my library book? (yes, these all happened THIS morning) I'd like to say that I patiently heard them out and helped them solve it themselves. I wish I could describe how I explained to them that certain things were their responsibilities and not mine and even if I knew where their shoes/library book, etc. was, it wasn't my job. I could have hugged them and said, "I know you're frustrated, dear, to have woken up late, but sometimes I make mistakes and don't wake you up on time."

But I didn't do any of these things. I blew my lid, lost it. Not cool. They just kind of stared, jaws dropped, milk glasses poised in the air and watched me rant and rave. When I was finished, they went back to eating like nothing had happened. BUT they got their own shoes, library books, bookbags, etc. (but I did have to write the check to the cafeteria). SO behaviorists would say I should have handled it differently, and I agree, but I have to say, it worked. Now I would probably get voted off a reality show for similar behavior. Not that I'm proud of that, but this morning, all I needed was results, my friends. Ever feel like that?

Now I know this was putting out a fire. I need to do some serious thinking tonight about how to stop this pattern, but for now, they're off to school with a kiss. I'm feeling kind of guilty, but what can I do? Does someone out there have a good grown-up tantrum story that will make me feel better? You know, I've been thinking about visual re-enactments and how they would really enrich this blog. Wouldn't a good re-enactment of me having a temper tantrum while my kids watched be fun to make? aarrgghh

A friend and I had a conversation this week-end about the worst things you've ever done as a parent, worst thing a parent's ever done to you, etc. So I came home and asked my kids, "What's the worst thing a parent's ever done to you?" The things they said were hilarious and 1. not at all bad and 2. none of the stuff I was worried about. So hopefully, my morning tantrum won't make the list.

We have a family member with cancer, everywhere, and we had a somewhat sleepless night worrying and waiting for word about him. Crankiness got the best of me. Anyone who's willing, please offer up a prayer for the Koppelman family and especially Uncle Russell.


alison moore said...

We all need those mornings, Donna. A good rant here and there cleans out the system. No damage done.

I, too, am concerned about Russell. I'm trying to focus on the positive...the time recently spent with the family. Hopefully he is out of pain and everyone gets some closure.

Miss you! Give everyone big hugs and kisses for me. xoxo

Anonymous said...

about adult tantrums, I'm going to say two words:
Bathroom drawers

Liz said...

I believe tantrums are necessary as long as they are infrequent and not too severe (ie no blood is shed!) It helps our kids to learn that we are not perfect and things get better again after the "storm".
I have considered tape recording my voice saying things like "Time to brush your teeth", "brush your hair", "please put your dishes in the sink", "I am not the only person living in this house", etc. It is quite amazing to me how after 6 years of attending school, the morning routine is something that has to be recited day after day (after day after day)!

Isabel by Donna Jones Koppelman

Isabel by Donna Jones Koppelman

Major Bear at the Grove Park Inn by Donna Jones Koppelman

Major Bear at the Grove Park Inn by Donna Jones Koppelman