As a parent (and probably as a person), some days you do things right. Other days you can’t believe how wrong things went. Most days you’ve got a little of both to look back on. Case in point…
Sunday morning: Saturday night my oldest and I decided to wrap her hair for headband curls (google it if you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s a pretty fun idea). Sunday morning we unwrapped her hair and voila! long, wavy curls. However, they were not the curls my semi-anal, likes-things-predictable child had envisioned and thus all hell ensued. She had a complete meltdown about the state of her hair and nothing I said made a difference. After going around & around in circles with her I realized I now had less than 15 minutes to shower & dress for religious education. I lost it. Screaming right back at her I basically told her to take her ridiculous tantrum and shove it. Not one of my finer parenting moments.
Sunday afternoon: I took J and his buddy to Legoland. It was a really fun day, not terribly crowded and there was so much to see and play with. There is one section where you get to build race cars and they have four ramps to then test your creation. I found a stool and let the boys go at it. About 15 minutes in, J ran over to me and asked if it was time to leave. I told him we could stay as long as he wanted – an answer that rarely comes from my over-scheduled mouth. The look of joy on his face showed that my relaxed, soak it all in attitude was perfect for the situation. Awesome parenting moment.
Sunday night: E is doing the homework that she has (once again) pushed off all weekend. When she gets her materials out of her backpack she sees something from last Friday’s student council election – the election that she lost and was very upset about. Keyword in that sentence: was. We had a good talk Friday night and she agreed to be disappointed but move on. Saturday was filled with activities and I thought we had indeed moved on. Sunday night proved otherwise and the tears & bitterness were flowing. The patient parent from Friday was long gone at this point (especially after a long day at Legoland). I told her that she cannot control the things that happen but she can always control her reactions. That it was time to drop it and move on. Winning isn’t everything. One bad experience does not define a person. Stop crying – I don’t want to hear about it anymore. Hmmmm… not such a good parenting moment.
So on this day I was 1 for 3 on the positive parenting. (Though the first incident did turn itself around when K apologized for her behavior about her hair. It helped when her friends at Sunday school liked it.)