Monday, August 19, 2013


I've never been a big "losing my temper" kind of girl. I usually internalize my anger, and it bubbles up as anxiety or depression later. Before I had E, I distinctly remember a few times when I got so angry that I threw something or punched a pillow. My anger would come on fast, like a bubble at the bottom of a pool, quickly rising to the top. Once there, I had my outburst, cried for awhile, then moved on. It was usually triggered by having to deal with 3+ issues at once. If money was a problem, I was late for work, I remembered that I had a doctor's appointment, and say, I spilled a glass of milk on the floor.

So, I worried about how I'd handle motherhood. Essentially, you're operating with 3+ triggers all the time. Money's almost always a problem. I'm always late for something. There's always a doctor's appointment looming, and there's milk everywhere. And what's worse is that there's a little person running around you, watching you, waiting to see how you'll react -- a little person who actually tries to trigger reactions and make you fly off the handle.

But, I'm different. Somehow. My anger moves more like the wax blobs inside a lava lamp. It doesn't quite sneak up on me like it used to. Still, there are a few things that have made me want to throw my metaphorical lava lamp at the wall, that caused me to have that "Enough!!," "pull-the-car-over," "oh-my-sweet-Lord," "somebody-help-me" moment. They were:

  • E's repeated pterodactyl screams in the car
  • E staying up until 4am wanting to 'pway wit doggie'
  • Mark not taking the trash/recycleables out after I asked 5+ times over the course of 2 weeks.

And even in those moments, I caught myself before the lava lamp bubble rose too high. I took my anger out on myself. I punched my legs or slapped myself in the face, screamed into a pillow, or made Mark get me some cookies to angrily eat. All totally normal, reasonable reactions, I think.

My only regret in those maybe 5+ moments over the last year was that I couldn't see the big picture. I have to forgive myself for it, because I'm a generally short-sighted, in-the-moment person anyway, and I'm learning, but if I had only known -- that these little parenting challenges are such a small part of this amazing journey I'm on.

Today, I came out of the bathroom, and E greeted me like I had returned from a 2-week vacation. She threw her arms around my legs, hugged me, then said, "Mama, pick up!?" "Always!" I said, as I scooped her into my arms. She played with my hair, smiled at me, then smushed her face right up against mine, nose-to-nose and said, "Ahhhh!!!" in a "Got you, Mama!" way.

And I will never get enough of that!

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