expectations

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expectations. collective sigh, right?

i could venture to say that 99% of the hurdles in my daily life are based in that title word. i have expectations about EVERYTHING. i have them about my daughter, my husband, family, friends, house, career, strangers, elected officials, products, religions, and even of you, dear reader.

however my biggest expectations are for myself. i expect myself to be a certain person, to behave in a certain way, to always look stylish, forever be young, to achieve certain things, accomplish much, fail at little. i can accomplish ten things in a day and beat myself up about the 11th thing i didn’t get done.

it’s exhausting and nonsensical.

i’ve been focusing attention and meditating about this certain area of myself for some time now and i have to admit i still don’t have many answers but what i do have is more awareness. and for that i am thankful. i am aware when i am setting myself up for failure, disappointment and resentment by creating some bar that is unattainable.

you see this is in my brain and on my heart right now because of our move and our new house. i have expectations of how i want it to look and what this move will mean and do for our family. and as i’m painting and taping off walls i can’t for the life of me decide if it’s worth it to make the space our own or if it is wasted effort spent on something superficial.

i guess i will have the answer to that when the time is right. but what i hope for is the courage to be a little gentler on myself and others. maybe one day i will be strong enough to let go of what i think things should look, feel and be like and see things just as they are.

when i’m ready, i’ll get there.

the thing about acorns is…

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yeah, this patience thing is one i’m meditating on A LOT lately. this illustration spoke to me from one of darla’s library books, Outside Your Window: A First Book of Nature, so i thought i would share it. i’m constantly reminding myself that it takes time for our seeds to come to fruition.

i’m always eager to see the results of work and effort and have a hard time remembering that everything happens in its own time. i can get disproportionately discouraged by minor setbacks.

what do you do when you need to conjure up a little more patience? please fill me in. i need all the help i can get!

time out

mikey’s only been gone a week and i already feel like putting my head through a wall.

three is a lot whinier than two.

momma is losing her grip and her patience. it’s clear i need a new strategy. i’ve got my daily dose of peaceful parenting tips coming in from the interwebs but i’m thinking i need to add some more parenting books to my collection.

has anyone read positive discipline or dr. sears’ discipline book? suggestions? any recommendations or strong drinks you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

thanks a mil.

cincinnati or bust???

here’s our day:

all three key players loaded into car. only one of us has egg on her face: success!

arrive at beautiful cincinnati museum center: success!

take in some architectural elements: success!

explored exhibits: success!

deliciousness at our lunch spot discovery servatii: success!

and, as always, a little silliness: success!

i’m reminding myself of the successes of the day b/c a good portion of the second half was a total bust. no rest for the weary girl. no rest for the weary parents. behavior issues from toddler caused behavior issues from parents. okay, just from me. and why does she insist on having a full force surge of independence show down every single time we’re in a parking lot? it’s all trivial stuff in the long run but by the end of the day i wanted to bang my head against the backseat window. oh yeah, did i mention i had to ride smushed in the backseat with wild child while the ikea purchase took up most of the room in the car? i’m sorry to complain but i’m trying to poke fun at the chaos more than anything. also it’s my writing so ICanDoWhatIWant!

despite the pitfalls, we discussed with jubilant enthusiasm (jubilant i tell you!) returning another day and time. we only scratched the surface of all that the cincinnati children’s museum has to offer. and with our reciprocal museum membership we have no excuses.

mommy did a bad, bad thing

last week i did a bad thing.

like most kids, darla has a habit of leaving her toys strewn about everywhere. most of the time it doesn’t really bother me because i like seeing her little trail all over my life and it’s easier to track her down that way. but last week it got to me.

i was feeling the effects of 2 months of single parenting a toddler that may or may not embody the most multiple personalities ever recorded in human history. there also might be some kind of feral dog in there but i don’t know if that counts as an actual personality. anyway, the point is i let it get to me that day. i tripped over darla’s toy stroller and found myself kicking it across the room the next second. hard. actually it was impressive and i’m a tad upset no one else was there to witness the beautiful arc in which it traveled. on the flip side i’m glad darla wasn’t in the room to see me lose it. well, of course it broke.

and then guess what i did? i just pushed the pieces back together and set it back in it’s rightful place and then thought “maybe she won’t notice.”  what am i? six again? bad parent. BAD PARENT!

a coupla days went by and she didn’t touch the darn thing and i thought i might actually get away with replacing it before she checked in. no such luck. while i was cooking her breakfast i heard her tell her doll that they were “going to the grocery store” and then she started wheeling baby dearest around the living room. the leg gave out and then my daughter gave out.

darla came running to me with tears welling up in her eyes. “mommy, i broke my stroller. i’m sorry, mommy. i’m sorry.” i never could have predicted this reaction from her because ANY other time she would have paid no attention. but life was out to teach me a lesson. and for that i’m glad.

“i’m sorry, honey” i started to say and then she snapped back “no! i’m sorry!” and had an argument with me for a second about who was sorry because she’s started this thing where being sorry is some kind of competition. this is our house, after all, and things couldn’t go all leave-it-to-beaver without a little rumble.  so i picked her up and sat down on the couch with her and confessed that i had broken her stroller. that i didn’t mean to but i broke it and i didn’t tell her right away and that was wrong of me.

then she looked up at me with baby blues and humbled me. “it’s alright, mom. don’t worry about it.”

you see, i had to put this down here on the internet for some accountability. not for what i had done but because someday these roles are gonna switch. probably someday soon. it won’t be long before darla breaks my owl shaped coffee creamer pitcher (thanks dave and kelli!) and i HAVE to remember to handle it with the grace and compassion that my 2 1/2 year old displayed. i have to. hold me accountable internet.

also, grandparents – i know you. you’re probably already looking up a replacement doll stroller on amazon. well, clickers off that purchase button. this is my wrong to right.