Tuesday, June 28, 2011

getting it wrong

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Do you ever have one of those weeks when you get it all wrong? Everything. Totally, utterly wrong.

This week it was:
1) Letting exhaustion speak to my kids with a harsh tone.
2) Denying B "one more kiss" at bedtime because she's already had 20 (she counted) and somehow to me, 21 kisses seems unreasonable. To a 3-year-old, of course, it's not.
3) Hurting friends' feelings with hastily written/spoken words (unintentional, but still)
4) Greeting my husband, after he was away last week, not with kisses and a joyous "welcome home" but with grumbles, complaints and expectations he would immediately take over 150% of the household/parenting duties (you know, 'cause that's fair).
5) Canceling a playdate (and thus disappointing two toddlers) because I realize I've overextended myself.
6) Not calling when I said I would call.
7) Totally spacing on a doctor's appointment (remembering at the exact moment they call me asking why I'm 20 minutes late)
8) Working more hours than I promised I would work.

There's more, but those are the ones weighing on me, mostly because they happened all within a very short time frame. And I know it does no good to ruminate on a list of failures. But it does remind me how flawed we humans are. And yet, despite my inclination to pull the covers over my head and hibernate for a while, these wrongs are only healed by staying in relationship with people. Apologizing. Reconnecting. Being vulnerable and honest. Rescheduling. Trying to do better next time.

It also reminds me to have empathy when others fail me.

Our mountain escape is just a few days away now, and I'm anticipating the long, long drive alone with my kids. Maybe this past week was a gift, because I go into the trip knowing it will not be perfect. My kids will whine and perhaps tantrum and resist sleeping and make big messes. I will be, at moments, tired and impatient.

I also know that there will be cooler weather and new adventures and laughter and joy along the way. We are choosing not to look for perfection. We will stop at the Four Corners Monument and take photos despite the fact cartographers recently discovered that the real quadripoint is 1,807 feet away.

The more I take my eyes off perfection and what may never be, the more I can focus on what is right here in front of me. And that is a pretty amazing pair of kids who forgive me when I fail, and a husband who is eager to support me when I'm weak, and friends who love me even if I falter. I get to work and be at home. We have the means to travel and experience new things and places. And, I have the ability to give my daughter 42 kisses at naptime (we counted).

I'm going offline for a little while, but I've lined up a few posts from the archives to keep you entertained. So check back in every few days. I'll also try to post a few photos of our adventure along the way. But if I don't get a chance, please forgive me. :) 

Adios!

1 comment :

  1. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability and imperfection. I so often beat myself up for not being the perfect mom/wife/friend/employee/citizen of the world...it's time to realize that I at least deserve the same forgiveness I extend to others. It helps to know other people experience the same anxiety about it on occasion.

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