I awoke, meditated, and was ready for the day.
Upon entering my kids room I noticed my son, Jack, had turned every single drawer upside down.
Uggg. I just wanted a peaceful day.
I didn’t get fully triggered; however, until my daughter, in her whiniest voice said, “My eggs are cold and I’m not eating this waffle.”
With a brief, “hang on a second,” I whisked my way outside to scream (literally). This is not the day I was hoping for.
I come back inside, and gratefully, Sierra explained her reasoning behind the waffle and egg complaint.
I quickly bit off the soggy pieces, gave her some empathy, and watched her finish what as left of her eggs and waffle.
By 10 am I’m co-facilitating a call for 20 Zen Parents on how to use compassionate communication at home.
Insecure thoughts creep in, “Sweet Jesus, I hope they don’t notice how rambunctious my kids are. Who am I to teach them? They should be teaching me.” I notice how they’re kids just patiently sit in their laps. Oh, note to self, I’m totally comparing right now. Kids jobs are not to be robotic, but to dump drawers upside down and see what happens when whining. It’s all about exploring cause and effects.
The day is filled with kids being kids and me wondering why I can’t relax.
Jack wakes up from his nap screaming at the top of his lungs.
I encourage him to use his words, but for 45 minutes I get nothing but high-pitched squeals of pain.
I don’t know if he’s bleeding internally, had a nightmare, or just isn’t ready to wake up.
I do know he loves water. So, I draw a bath and we both get in.
Trying to control my kids, and chase the holy grail for peace isn’t working, so I finally take a breath, surrender, and ask for some back up.
My roommate is home and she agrees to make sure the kids don’t impale themselves on anything sharp.
I grab a beer and choose to watch an hour of NFL Live on my computer.
And that’s when it happens. I take care of my feelings of relief and need for rest.
Like magic, the kids do what they do best and throw all the pillows and cushions around the house on the floor and start launching themselves from the chair to the sofa to the floor.
As I sip a beer and watch two grown men in helmets tackle each other, I ironically meet my need for peace and reconnect to my body.
After a 30 minute break, I’m back in my heart and feel re-energized for the rest of the night.
Except Jack’s bloody nose, but that stopped in like 2 minutes.
Monday Mindfulness to Finding Peace in the Chaos of Parenting
Don’t do it alone. If you’re single, or your partner isn’t available to help, make plans for some-one in your community to give you an hour of relief.
Notice your comparison to other parents. I’m guessing you are your harshest judge. Take a breath and remember the areas in which you are doing well.
Mindfulness doesn’t always occur with meditation or yoga. It can happen watching tv, drinking a beer, or doing just about anything. Let go of being a perfect parent and be a parent who com-passionately loves themselves and their kids.