Shortly after their respective births, I assigned each of my children (whom I love with my whole heart) a name. He, Rex. She, Sydney.
I say these names with exhausting repetition each and everyday. “Rex, sit here. Sydney, don’t put that in your mouth. Rex, please stop. Sydney, eat your food.”
Some days, however, are different. Today was one of those days.
Sydney started the day “Sydney.” By mid morning Sydney was “she” (as in “she’s really fussy”) and by dinner she was “it” (as in “it won’t stop crying!”)
I sincerely hope I am not alone in the name-to-pronoun morphing phenomenon because if I am, my fear that I’m not cut out for “this” becomes a very real possibility.
Anyway, I experience days when my little people wear me down. Today was one of those days.
Inevitably, when my children (whom I love with my whole heart) become pronouns, I shame spiral. “Why don’t I have enough patience?”… “Surely, I’m the worst mom on the planet (or at least MN).”…”I’m ruining them…” Etc. I then feel like a worthless parent and yell more. [Cringe]
Here’s the thing about shame spiraling though- It’s dumb and pointless and just another thing we parents do to torture ourselves.
My sister jokingly said not long ago, “they [her family] are always critical when I yell…they should really be proud of all the times I DON’T yell. That’s the real accomplishment.”
She’s on to something. Let’s flip the script.
So you forgot to pack lunch… I’d be willing to bet you usually remember to feed them…
So you said sh*%… At least you didn’t say f#%^ …
So you yelled at dinner… I bet you told them more than once already that you love them…
Bottom line: What we lack in perfection, we more than make up for with love. There’s always more good than bad. We just need to train ourselves to look harder…and stop being so damn critical ;).