Sunday, October 16, 2011

Clean Slate Sunday: 10.16.11 edition

Today is one of those days when I am so thankful for the promise of a fresh start tomorrow.

I started my day with teeth clenched, upset at both the kids. On the drive to church I tried to take a few deep breaths and adjust my attitude, but it seemed like the more I tried, the more determined my offspring were to get under my skin.

I've been on the receiving end of more than my fair share of attitude lately and I'm sick of feeling like an emotional punching bag. Oh believe me, I don't just roll over and take it. But no amount of gentle correcting, sternness, ignoring it, yelling, privileges revoked or good behaviors rewarded makes any lasting impact. And let's face it - they outnumber me.

I waited years for my one boy and one girl to get to a point where they were more friends than rivals.

Well. Here we are.

How can I be unhappy that they are getting along more than not these days? I'll tell you how: they're common interest seems to be attacking me. There's so much attitude and drama in this house lately I feel like someone plunked me down in the middle of an episode of Toddlers & Tiaras.

It's exhausting.

I tried several times today to start from scratch - forgive them (even though they hadn't apologized), and let it go. Apparently they didn't get that memo. Probably because they don't listen to a dang thing I say. So their antics continued.

By the time we got home from church (where I coulda' chugged that whole chalice of wine during Communion) and our Bible study classes I could hardly keep my eyes open. It felt like my body was so tired of being on constant defensive alert it was just shutting down. I didn't fight it. I sunk into my bed for a nap and when I heard thumps and bumps and squealing coming from the other end of the house I blew my top.


I didn't care where they went or what they did, I just wanted them out of my house and out of earshot.

I knew they'd probably end up at Nana's house next door anyway. Which was fine. I really, really didn't care.

Oh, there were good moments today. But they were fleeting.

Even up to the point when I sent them to bed tonight, after they dragged their feet preparing for morning (even though they do this every school night and they know what to expect), Rachel was fussing at me because I didn't come to kiss her goodnight quickly enough. And you know what? I would bet a thousand dollars that if either of those kids is missing anything they need in the morning, they will blame me.

And then they will ask what I'm making for them for breakfast.

These are the days when I am so glad I can choose to start tomorrow with a clean slate. I can get a good night of rest and be ready to offer up some grace in the morning. I can pray for guidance, sleep off the bad vibes, and start over tomorrow.

If that doesn't work I think I'm going on strike.


  1. I feel ya Jen. I do. I've done the "strike" thing before. In a way that I didn't say a word to them (or he or she) until they could regain my respect by giving respect back to me. I've went an entire 24 hours before I even said Hi. When I'm tired of the fight to "win" the argument - whose right or wrong - with my kids, when I don't say it word, it speaks volumes.

    Stand your ground. YOU are in charge. One thing David reminds me of from time to time is when he says, "Your the rock, the glue that keeps this all together." He's gone. Steve's gone. It's up to us and keep the lives of an entire family together. We are gonna break. We are gonna lose it. And that's ok. Cuz we put up and deal with the most. You (we) deserve respect. Demand it.

  2. Thanks for the encouragement, Bobbi. I know if anyone truly "gets" it, you certainly do.

    Fortunately, one of them slept off her crankiness last night and was an absolute peach this morning. The other one, not so much. But I do feel a renewed strength today, so I am ready for it. ;)