We all do it. There’s tons of memes that are meant to be funny, and often are because they are so relatable. Finally admitting to my best friend that sometimes I yell and being surprised that she does too. Seeing another parent on the edge at the grocery store and feeling their fury deep in your soul.
I have 4 children. We’ve been locked away for 3 months. No school. Schedules disturbed. No playground. Even dad is home which throws everything even more off. The frustration grows until, like a boiling kettle, it explodes.
The rage comes out. My cool is totally out the window. For a moment I feel nothing, then the myriad of feelings sets in and I have to fix the mess I made.
My kids are struggling just as much as I am. Their behavior has reflected this. Kids as a general rule aren’t the best listeners but when everything is all wonky that seems to be multiplied. I try to ask kindly. Calmly. Speak in nice tones. But when I’ve asked each child 37 times to put their shoes on and they are still sitting around throwing dirty socks, well…
So I yell. Honestly, 50% of the time they do whatever task I was asking to be done and 50% of the time they just look at me as if I’ve totally lost my mind. Because I don’t often yell. And when I do it’s like a 3 headed monster emerges and they are never sure what to make of it.
I’ve learned, throughout my 7 years of parenting, that this is not the end of the world. It’s not ideal, but it’s what happens after that truly matters.
My kids know that people aren’t perfect. Sometimes humans lose their cool. Sometimes they regret their actions. In this house always we apologize. Talk. Discuss what should have been done differently, by all involved. In this house we know that people sometimes fall apart and they see the steps it takes to get yourself back together.
They rage too. They say terrible things that they don’t mean. They completely fall apart. And since they’ve seen the adults do it they know what to do next.
Falling apart is not the end of the world. We all do it. If you don’t I’d love to know how. It’s the after the truly matters. The discussion. The apology. The honesty. So many feelings come out in these moments and often the issue that brought us there is solved. At least for the time being. We try, we fall (not fail) and we get right back up and try again.
Parenting has humbled me. I am not perfect. My spouse is not perfect. My kids aren’t perfect. We are all humans with big feelings. Ideally I try to head it off before the kettle boils over, but when it doesn’t go as planned I always make sure to clean it back up. To quote Anna from Frozen 2, “do the next right thing”