After the worst parenting week of my entire life, I feel like we finally had a new breakthrough last night. My husband called our older girls over after I yelled like a crazy person about how I couldn’t take it anymore. I began to cry and said I’m about to go batshit crazy… yep, I said that. LOL
With his hand on my shoulder, he talked to the girls about how human I was. It wasn’t right that I had yelled. It wasn’t okay. He told them “However, she’s not just your mom, this is my wife, and I love her a lot.” He went on to say that we’re a family and a family is a team. He told them how much I try to teach them and love on them as they learn and grow. He told them how much I love them and how much I’ve given to be their mom. Then he asked them, “How much do you think it hurts her when you ignore her, make other things more important, aren’t kind to each other, aren’t respectful of her, and lie to her.”
It was hard to sit through that… I wanted to tell them I’m not their responsibility. It’s not their job to take care of me. It’s not up to them to keep me happy. But… it is. It’s my job to first and foremost take care of them and be responsible for them and to enjoy life with them… but as a family, I’m a part of that too. I so often teach about how to honor Daddy and show him how much we love him and I so often teach about how to love each of their siblings and how to best understand their hearts, how to love each other, and how to seek forgiveness when they’ve hurt one another. Somewhere along the way, I never taught them how or even told them the same for me.
Being that, as a child, I was pretty much not allowed to think of how I felt and put my emotions on the back burner to care for the adults in my life, I really sought to avoid my kids ever feeling like they were responsible to keep me happy (or that they were responsible for my unhappiness). Along the way I took that to the extreme and didn’t invest as much time as I should have in teaching them that I’m human too, and I need love – especially from those I love so much.
After my husband talked to them, they broke down and tearfully apologized to me. I told them I forgive them and that I love them so much. It opened up a dialogue of our feelings and the girls were able to share how I had hurt theirs and I was able to apologize for yelling so much and not putting more effort into communicating with them that I was hurting. I was also able to share with them that it wasn’t right to take the hurt I had been feeling about what others had done to me and project it onto the way they were hurting me. I explained that I had been hurt by a person close to me and that I had become angry. I explained how important it is to be loving and kind to the people in our lives because if we aren’t, we can deeply wound them in ways they may not know how to overcome. I told them I would work on not allowing others to dictate my emotions like that again. I allowed it to affect my family and now here we were, all in tears.
Today went so much more smoothly. We had a few bumps but we all put all our greatest effort into being kinder, fixing it when we weren’t, and apologizing. I watched all five of my kids sit and work together at the table, laughing and enjoying each other as they did their own work and helped each other. It was such a beautiful sight. When supper came, things got a bit more rocky and I ended up yelling again and it hurt my oldest. She began to cry and I tried to chill. She came up to me and calmly explained how I had hurt her feelings and why. We sat down together and talked for an hour about it and we both felt so much better afterward. And the words we ended on left my heart so full, “I don’t know why I always wait to talk to you about my feelings. You always listen and I always feel better after.”
With all the screw ups I’ve made in my parenting… that right there… thank You Jesus! How self aware she is to see that! And how I can so relate to doing that with how I’ve been with God sometimes – I try to work through it or I struggle through it alone, waiting it out… then I talk to God about it and my brain explodes at His love for me. I pray that her ability to come to me so freely and learning that she doesn’t have to wait and shouldn’t wait, teaches her all the more that she can always go to the Lord and that He’ll always be there… long after I’m gone and unable to be.
At bedtime, she came in to our bedroom and told my husband what we talked about at supper time and told him that she was thankful for us. Could I be any more wrecked and humbled at this girl. She’s so beautiful. Her heart is so lovely and she’s so honest and real. She’s gotten more bold and is learning to communicate and I can’t even express how awesome it is to call her my daughter.
I pray I continue to always listen and always work through her feelings with her and my other children. I pray our relationships grow and blossom into amazing friendships as they continue to grow and mature. I’m so so proud of my kids and the path they’re on, the heart they have, and the goals that drive them. They are amazing and I’m honored to be their Mom.
Last night I felt hopeless but the night ended with a glimmer of hope and tonight made me excited. I’m so excited to see that even in the midst of my batshit crazy moments lol God is still working. This is not for nothing. God is working on all of us in this beautiful family He’s given me, and I’m so excited to see, what more is He going to do!!!