There was no trigger moment for me. I think I just slept horribly and woke up in a bad mood. Not good, even when your kid wakes up in a mood too.
I felt annoyed with everything that was happening that morning—things my husband was doing, the path of destruction my son was on, the weather. You name it, I was not a fan of it that morning. And as the day continued, my mood only worsened, which made my toddler act out even more.
Toys all over the nearly every room. Play-Doh on my kitchen floor and stuck to my dining room chairs. What I made for lunch wasn’t what he wanted to eat. I had to mop milk and/or juice up for the third time. He had finally discovered he was tall enough to reach the raisins and was sitting on the floor stuffing them into his mouth, which meant a few extra-dirty diapers for me to change that day.
I was counting down to my most cherished two-hour slot of the day dedicated to just me called Nap Time.
I bet you can guess what happened…
William. Would. Not. Sleep.
He was screaming for me nonstop and had thrown his water across the room, so his carpet was nice and moist when I walked in there.
I finally lost it. I had been angry all day and just wanted some time to myself. How I was handling my job was not what a good mother does.
I plopped on the ground and started crying. I knew exactly why William was acting out, and it was because of how I was behaving. I didn’t know what was wrong with me, but I knew I needed a definite attitude adjustment.
So I made a decision to just take a break. I gave him the iPad and sat him on the couch with Goldfish and raisins and juice. You read that right. I’m not ashamed that I give him electronics and let him eat on the couch. I did what I had to do to calm myself down before I made any kind of motherly mistake I would regret soon after.
When he was settled in his spot, I sat on the other couch and lied down—no TV, no iPhone. I just remained in a horizontal position, slowed my breathing down and started praying that God take my anger away.
There was no real reason I woke up in such a bad mood. There was no real event throughout the day that caused my mood to appear. It was just one of those days. And on days like that, a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do.
A few months ago at the church I attend, they created “My Daily Declaration” cards to give to everyone. There are 15 points to declare at the start of your day as a reminder of how to live a God-first life. One of the points that I read when I had my come-to-Jesus moment that day was number 6…
“My voice in my child’s life is the most powerful voice they hear.”
I was not being an example of a godly mother that day and that’s not acceptable in my household. I was breaking my own rule. A quiet break to reflect, repent and pray is just what I needed to get both of our days back in order.
Sometimes, you just need quiet time. Sometimes, giving you kiddos an iPad or putting on a video is what you have to do to make that happen. Do it, mama. You need to be a strong example for your kids and love on them no matter how many times they spill milk or throw the Play-Doh. Just take that break.
Besides, you always have that glass of wine (or in my case, fudge brownie) you can reward yourself with at the end of your rough day.
How do you calm yourself down on rough days?