Saturday, June 12, 2010

Breaking Point

Some days the kids are just whiny and annoying, like today.  I had hopes that we'd have a smooth day that would involve watching some World Cup soccer.  By the time the US versus UK match was on, the kids were melting down, despite the fact they'd just woken up from naps.

I was cagey, frustrated, anxious and needed to blow off steam. It just gets to a point where everything rubs you the wrong way.  My observant husband suggested I go for a walk.  So I threw on my flip flops and left the house with no destination in mind.  I recalled a house for sale that I wanted to walk by, so off I went.

On the way, I passed by a house with 3 younger girls and a Mother fighting (in French) on their front porch.  I couldn't help but stare at what was, I'd guess, the ultimate breaking point for this Mother.  She was screaming and grabbed one of the girls by the pony tail and yanked her head back.  I'm sure she was holding herself back.  They didn't even notice me walking by as the situation was obviously so intense and all consuming.  The Mom managed to direct all the girls inside, and as I walked by I heard the front door slam hard and the Mother's continued screams inside.

As parents we are tested in so many ways, every day.  Parenthood puts us into the most annoying and frustrating situations and sometimes we just can't keep our cool.  It is like a volcano that just has to erupt.  It feels good to let it rip, but we usually regret it once the lava has spewed everywhere and we're left to clean up the pieces.  But we can't always be perfect.  And I will be the first to admit that most folks on this block have seen me freaking out at my kids as I try to heard them to the car or back into the house.  We aren't always at our best, and that's the reality of it.

Anyway, I felt so bad after walking by this scene that I decided on the spot that I was going to go home and get the kids into their UV protective swim wear and turn on the sprinkler.  The kids were nuts when I got home, but I got them suited up and we hit the outdoors with a burst of excitement.

It was the best thing we could have done.  They had an awesome time and I got to sit on the porch and watch them play together.  A moment of bliss in an otherwise annoying day.  Hang in there day can be perfect, and neither can we.

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