Monday, May 14, 2012

Quest for the cape - patience and appreciation

So after the fail of M-F, I was determined that Saturday would be better.  I was going to focus on being more patient, and being in control of my temper.

I got up at my usual 4am, worked on some projects for graduation and Mother's Day, and gave myself a break.  Picked up House Rules that I had gotten from the library, and could not put it down! Had to for Little Princess' t-ball game.  But I was completely engrossed in the plot.

My decree that I would be more patient was definitely put into action several times.  For whatever reason, Little Princess had several meltdowns before 2pm.  Rather than sinking to her level, being disgusted by the actions. I tried empathy.  While she didn't necessarily stop, it didn't turn into the anger that her meltdowns had the previous week.  Thankfully, her evening was much better.

I had Mother's Day on the brain.  I was a little bit of a martyr, I will admit.  I was thinking about why it was always my responsibility, it was assumed I would do things, etc. etc. etc. (Like the dog wouldn't have chewed her flip flop if I had done my job as the cleaner.  I get no respect.)  Or how me taking a break to read didn't mean someone else couldn't do the housework.  Please tell me you've had those thoughts?

Well, I curled up on the couch with my book, and promptly fell asleep.  Took a lovely nap - about 3 hours!!! - and awoke to hubby and Big Princess cooking dinner.  Should have made me feel great, right?  Well, if the house were clean it would have.

Instead, I kept hearing myself and hubby tell Big Princess to do things (he told her part of her job as sous chef was to clean up the kitchen, I reminded her that the laundry basket needed to be taken upstairs, etc. etc.)  I realized that yes, she has responsibilities in the house, as do most kids.  It's just part of teamwork of family.  But if I was feeling a little under-appreciated, how must she feel?  So I spent the rest of the evening acknowledging her actions.  Every time she did something, either because we asked or if we didn't, part of her "chores" or not, I thanked her.  When I told her good night, I thanked her again.

I want my children to feel appreciated.  For who they are.  For their efforts.  For their contributions.  For their actions.  I think most disharmony in homes and workplaces comes from a lack of recognition - not for the sake of recognition, but to feel appreciated.  Sure, I want them to have responsibility, but I want them to know that I am grateful when they follow through.  I am big on responsibility, team work, etc. But being taken for granted isn't good for anyone.. 

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