with myself.

woke up this morning. gave the girls their clothes not expecting them to get dressed while i was in the shower.  mornings are a struggle most days.

emerge from shower and girls are missing and clothes are off the bed. hear them downstairs scraping chairs in the kitchen.

dry off, get dressed, walk downstairs.  they have not only dressed but made breakfast for me and for themselves. the table holds, two bowls of honey nut cheerios and one bowl of cascadian farms granola with an apple sitting next to it because as ems says, we can’t cut it for you mommy.

sit down (for once) and eat breakfast with my girls which was beyond a mother’s dream come true.  so proud of them.

then it erupts.

there is one steadfast rule i hold tight to in my home.  there will be no hitting.  i don’t hit my children.  a small pat of the rear as they go up the stairs to get them to hightail it, but we are just not that kind of family that believes brutality fixes anything….at all.

the second newly enforced rule is that they are not allowed in the bathroom at the same time.  because when they are, it is NEVER good. after a toothpaste fight, a roll of toilet paper in the toilet, and numerous changes of clothes in the morning after water battles, they have been told.

which is why after a glorious morning, i lost it, when boo emerged from upstairs holding her arm, that ems had squeezed her.  when asked what boo did, she smacked her.  so they were both in the bathroom together and hitting happened.

i start out calm, and explaining things.  i am the explainer in the beginning.  we don’t do this because this is what happens…….this is how this makes her/me feel so would you want……….you need to apologize but that’s not enough, what can you do to make her feel better, you have to make up for it……….

but there is a problem.  see, ems is a miniature version of me. she stomps her feet, she screams, she cries, she has a very difficult time keeping her emotions in check and like me has difficulty letting it go.

we have tried timeout, we have tried rewards for good behavior, we have tried taking away privileges, we have tried going outside and throwing beanbags, we have tried deep breathing. but the two of us together both upset is a recipe for disaster.

which resulted in my grandmother walking in the door to ems in time out in the dining room, screaming at me and me yelling back, that i had five minutes to leave and didn’t have time for this.  so ems kept screaming and kicking and ranting about not being able to sit still and i, well i stood spreading strawberry jam on her sandwich,  silently crying at the kitchen island because i feel like i have no control.

i realize this is more about me. and my feeling overwhelmed.  i sit here now at work, wondering how we went from such proud, beautiful moments to heinous chaos in one morning.  i want the girls to be responsible, and find their manners again.  i want to provide them with discipline, but at the same time i don’t want to nag, nag, nag at them all day long, because honestly i don’t have the energy for it.

i feel some days that i do not have enough to give them.  that maybe a better mother, a more organized mother, would remember to check things on forms, would not forget to give them a bath, would have the time to do the things the teachers suggest for at home, would pack the lunches and do the dishes the night before, would be relaxed enough to take the time and calmly work out the issues of naughty behavior, would not come home, tired and weary of their energy and enthusiasm.

but alas, supernanny is not coming, and all i can do is continue to strive to become more organized, and take care of myself.   with more sleep and better food and maybe a vitamin and some exercise i would feel better myself.  but then that requires some time now doesn’t it, and i seem to be short on that these days.  all i know is  life will continue to be difficult and tiring and soon enough we will be a home with one mama and two blossoming, hormonal teenagers, so let’s hope that by then, i get my stuff together and these little beauties in line.



Filed under girls, home life, single parenthood

4 responses to “disheartened

  1. syd

    Lovely woman. I am crying as I read this because I relate on such a deep level. And I wish I had the right thing to say but here’s the thing. We love them more than life itself. And they know this, they will always know this in their core beings. I would say more, but I have to get back to my own two beauties who are going to be blossoming, hormonal teenagers in the blink of an eye. Lordy.

    xo so much love from my end of the word to yours.

  2. elaine

    i too was a single parent after a very difficult and protracted divorce, and learned in the first couple of years to be a “good enough” parent on those days or weeks when it seemed endlessly overwhelming…my 2 daughters are grown and live in another city now studying advanced ed, they are wonderful young women, 2 of my favorite people, we talk/email or fb almost every day… we do the best we can and forgive ourselves for our short comings and in the end what is best in us endures and leaves its imprint, your commitment to be the best that you can be on any given day is what helps to shape yours and your daughters lives, your love and commitment to them shines thru in your entry, they are lucky to have you.

  3. Oh my heart…

    You know, this is so familiar to me, and I am sure to so many others. It is the hardest part of being a parent. I resent having to be a nag first thing in the morning! I hate finding myself arguing at their level! (I mean really…). But you know, it’s not hopeless, dear one.

    You are aware of it, and that’s somewhere to start. Keep up the good stuff and just don’t beat yourself up over the stuff that goes pear shaped. Try and learn from it and let it go. You will get there!

  4. oh sweetie sorry you are struggling, you are not alone. the mornings are tough! hang in there. xo

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