I have started this post and have deleted my words over and over.
I am struggling to find them and that is new for me. I never seem to be at a loss for words. I might actually be accused of using too many. Of saying too much.
Tonight, however, I am at a loss for words and at a loss for action.
Lately I seem to struggle in everything I do. Daily routines and rituals are becoming harder. Everything seems to be a chore. The world, and everyone in it, is plotting against me.
Yeah. It's THAT bad.
Generally I would tell you that I love my life and that the daily grind is one of my favorite parts. The day in- day out routines are what I do best.
Lately I am not even doing those well. I have been short-tempered and easily aggravated. I can feel the tension seeping into my back over basic things like getting the kids ready for school or (the worst) getting the kids ready for bed.
Right or wrong, sometimes it seems like those trivial parenting moments are the ones that all of a sudden come crashing down on top of you in a feeling that leaves you fighting for air and questioning whether or not you are getting ANY of this "parenting thing" right.
I find myself feeling a little perturbed that no one gave me a parenting manual and everyone else seems to have theirs memorized. Wasn't the hardest part of parenting supposed to be getting through those initial sleepless nights or making it through the teen years? I underestimated the energy that is required in sorting through the complex make-up of the personalities of children. I also underestimated the energy that is drained from you while molding and shaping children, like pieces of clay, trying to form something that is both useful and beautiful and appreciated by others.
This 8 year old daughter of mine? I expect far too much from her. She is passionate and caring. Witty and mature. She is self assured and confident. She is an optimist. She has a sense of humor that keeps me laughing. More often than not she is selfless. She is incredibly empathetic and seems to always know what is needed from her in the form of words and actions. She is like her daddy.
Still. She is 8 years old. And she is my daughter. Although she is all those wonderful things, I shouldn't always expect her to be all those wonderful things. I should accept her being less. I mean, after all, aren't I?
This 6 year old son of mine? He is incredibly bright. He is extremely sensitive. He is easily distracted and easily disturbed. He is a worrier. He is a pessimist. He is many times selfish with his wants and time. He is hard on himself. He expects to be let down and disappointed. He expects to disappoint. He is like his mommy.
Still. He is 6 years old. And he is my son. Although he is all of those things, I shouldn't always expect him to be all of those things. I should expect him to be more. I mean, after all - at times -aren't I?
This parenting gig is so tricky. I feel as if I fail my kids daily. I don't have all the answers. There are times that I see the error of my ways and don't know how to fix it or if I even can. I wonder how deeply my ignorance has effected and shaped my kids. I often depend on Steven to balance the scale, but that isn't always possible when so much of the day to day life falls on me and my time.
I think that I always believed that as long as my children knew how fiercely and completely I loved them, that the rest would fall into place. I continue to hope that holds true.
In the meantime, I am sure that I will mess them up daily. In fact, I know that I do. It isn't intentional but isn't that our job as parents? We work and work to right the wrongs committed by our parents during our own childhood, desperate not to repeat their mistakes, only to find that we have committed new and different mistakes in the raising of our own children.