Sunday, July 01, 2012

Sometimes it's just plain rough

Being a parent is HARD! 
Being a parent is exhausting!
Being a parent is just down right rough sometimes!

Don't get me wrong, I love being a mom and I wouldn't change it for the world, but sometimes I just need a break. I'm remind of the saying "No rest for the weary." and that's how I am feeling today.

Noah was asked to help pass the sacrament in church and so for the first 20+ minutes of sacrament I was alone with all 4 kids. 

Of course I'm alone all day with all 4 kids and I survive. And I've even sat in sacrament with all 4 kids alone before, but for some reason today they were extra super naughty. It was chaos I tell you, just pure chaos. 

Landon lied to me 2 times and told me he had to go to the bathroom, but he didn't.

Landon whined his high pitched whine when I told him to fold his arms for the prayer. (he folded them, but in a pouting way, with his big bottom lip sticking out)

My sweet baby girl, who usually just chills in her car seat happy as a clam, wanted to be held from the second the opening prayer was over.

None of my children wanted to fold their arms for any of the prayers (and there were 3 babies blessed today, so their were lots of prayers)

Landon threw a fit 3 separate times because he wanted something his brothers had (yes he will be 6 this month, and I think he was my hardest one.)

Braddoc and Tayton both wanted to sit in my lap (while I was holding Aowyn)

Tayton kept crawling under the pews to play with the people behind us and to climb on the empty bench in front of us (one time it was during a prayer and I hear the older two laughing so I open my eyes and look at them to tell them to be reverent and see Tayton just chilling on the pew with the family behind us)

The people behind us gave the boys a book to read (we had some but of course our's were not good enough) and they ripped the back page of the book and fought VERY loudly about who was going to get to read the book.

Tayton decided he wanted to be adventurous today and made it his mission to try and escape out the side of the pew.

Once Noah came back to sit with us it was a bit better but still crazy (I think the kids took crazy pills today)

Braddoc (who really has trouble leaving me, I think it has a lot to do with his possible high functioning autism {we are still getting testing}) refused to go to class because it was just the male teacher and a male sub (for some reason he doesn't take well to men, I think it has a lot to do with Noah being deployed the first year of his life) and just cried and cried and clung to me like a little baby monkey when it was time for him to go to class. The poor kid turned bright red and could hardly breathe so I took him to his daddy.

When we got home from church we all changed and headed out the door to my parents house for dinner. On the way to my parents house we get a phone call from them saying that my mom is not feeling good and of course with us moving and having a million things on our plate we did not want to get any of the kids sick, so we opted out of dinner. We turned around and came home and some how between the phone call and the house I got a very intense headache. We walked in the door at 6 o'clock. Since we didn't have anything precooked or thawed out, because we didn't think we were going to have to cook, we had to wing it. My head was pounding so badly I felt like I was going to pass out, so Noah fixed the kids food. Braddoc wanted cereal, Landon wanted beans and Tayton wanted potatoes. We totally earned the award for BEST PARENTS EVER by cooking that amazingly healthy dinner, right? Right? 

I wanted to curl up in a ball and go to sleep. 
I wanted my headache to go away. 
I wanted the kids to stop screaming.
I wanted them to all be in bed and the day to be over.
I wanted to be lazy and just do nothing.
I was in a bad mood. 
Everything today seemed to be stacked against me.

But of course the problem difficulty with being a parent is that you can't just rest or be lazy whenever you want. Well you can, but that's not always fair to your kids.

So I sucked it all up and cuddled with my babies on the couch. All three of the boys wanted my lap and I wanted my lap to myself. At first I just wished they all didn't like me so much, (you know the whole, "I need my space", "I just want to pee in peace." type thing?) but then I realized how blessed I was because they did love me so much and because they wanted to be near me. 

It was in that moment of realization that I thought about something I tell Landon all the time when he tells me he is just mad, "No one can make you mad but you. You are the only person who has control over your emotions. Other people can bother you and try to change your mood, but you are the only one who can truly let it affect your heart."

I always think about this quote by President Monson when I say that to him:

"To be angry is to yield to the influence of Satan. No one can make us angry. It is our choice. If we desire to have a proper spirit with us at all times, we must choose to refrain from becoming angry. I testify that such is possible." 

Now I wasn't angry with anyone I was just in a bad mood, but to me the same thing applies, I think. I was in a bad mood and that's almost just as bad as being angry. 

The kids were not trying to put me in a bad mood. It wasn't fair to them that I had a headache and that I was tired and that I just wanted the day to be over. 
I needed to change my heart. 
I needed to find all the good in the day and be grateful for all I had.

Once I decided I needed to change my heart, it was easy to think of all the good things from the day.

I got to substitute for the chorister in primary. (if there were such thing as a "dream" calling, this would be mine.) It was so much fun to be with "my kids" in primary again. I have missed them since I got released. 

I actually got to go to church and worship. ( I am grateful to live in a country where I have that right)

Aowyn smiled at everyone and anyone who even looked her way today. That girl has the brightest eyes, and a smile to light up a room.

Tayton got hurt several different times and immediately ran to me and wanted to be loved on. He gives the most amazing hugs and is so soft and cuddly. 

I was able to bare my testimony in sacrament.

The boys cleaned up the playroom and were laughing and wrestling the whole time.

In the end I was still exhausted, my headache was still there, and I still wanted to go to sleep, but my mood was much better. My heart was changed and I was able to focus on the good parts, even though I felt like the vast majority of the day was rough. 

As a parent I can just quit or take the lazy road. I can tell my kids that because I am not feeling good that they are on their own and believe me sometimes I want too, and sometimes it needs to be a movie and popcorn lazy type of day, but usually it's more just a matter of me changing my heart and changing my mood.

Its not fair for me to just give up because I am forever, first and foremost their mom. Sometimes its tough to put on a bright smiling face. 
Sometimes it tough to be a happy mom in spite of all the crazy that is going on around us.
Sometimes it seems like our kids will never stop whining or crying or fighting.
Sometimes everything is not beautiful  and cheery with blue birds whistling a merry tune.
Sometimes we just do all we can to survive. 

Today I learned that even when I feel like I am barely staying afloat and that my feet are dragging the bottom of a very deep pool, while only the outermost tip of my nose is above the water, that its still above the water and that's all I need to change my mood. 

President Monson didn't say that its okay to be angry (or in a bad mood) when we have had a bad day. He didn't say that its okay to be angry when my day is rough and its all I can do to keep up with everything. He said that those are the emotions of Satan and that I have complete control over them. 

I don't have control over my children (even though I like to think I do, they still have their own agency),  I can't change the things they do all the time, but I can change me.

 I can chose to have the spirit of love with me and refrain from being in a bad mood. I am of course much happier when I chose that path and surprisingly so are my children. Things in the house change. The mood in the house changes. We all change. 

I'm not saying that its easy to change my mood. I am stubborn and for some crazy reason I always feel like I'm justified . I know that is possible to change it though and I know that "justification or not", my bad mood is not in keeping with the spirit of love that I want in my home. 

So while sometimes its just plain rough, isn't it better to have the spirit of love on our side? 

I think that it's our duty as parents, as women, to foster that spirit in our home, no matter how crazy it is, no matter how hard it is. It IS possible to change our mood and it is worth it to change it.

Because after all, these beautiful kids are worth whatever it takes.

1 comment:

J and M said...

i love this post!! you are inspiring! i must just be too stubborn... i need more change of heart!! you're amazing!