April 26, 2004

Stealers of Discipline and Joy

If I was a conspiracy theorist I would say there was a conspiracy occurring today to keep me from being disciplined right after I admitted I needed to be. There is something in the water with my kids today, they have just given up on listening. They have used ink stamp pads on their walls and all over their bodies (even the bottom of their feet), they have had a water fight, they have watered the rug thinking it was the garden, they have washed the walls and made big messes while doing it. They have put glue on their wall and their hands and we have been through several outfits.

I've been trying to keep my cool, I've enlisted Serona via Instant messenger from work and I have prayed. I've been patient, I've lost my temper, and I've tried to be creative. Mostly now I am tired and I want the day to be over. I know it is all a normal part of childhood and normal for their ages, but that doesn't make it easy.

If I look hard I can find the underlying causes of the problems and try to resolve them. But the reality is the behavior is still exhausting and incorrect and needs to be dealt with. It seems nothing is making an impression today. It is one of those days I understand "throw the towel in" and "Calgon take me away". Of course I can not do that and no one ever said parenting would be easy - suppose one challenging day in the midst of many other good ones is a small price to pay.

Even in the midst of this day - Sirah smiles and it is contagious. Rhiannon tells a "joke" that makes me laugh and I enjoy some snuggle time on the couch with Ciaran. I look at each of them and see their strengths and remind myself that they will be teenagers someday and these are the good days. I look at their challenging behaviors and try to find the good charachteristic I need to help turn this into and sometimes that helps. When all else fails I have to just laugh or as the indigo girls say - I'd cry my eyes out. It's really not that bad - kind of funny when I look at all in writing.


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