Patience: How I Found Mine
Patience. We are all expected to have it, but where do we learn it? Or, even better – how do we teach it?
Today, after a long and grueling morning, toting along my sick infant, sick toddler, and sick SELF to Roseville and back, I found my patience dipping dangerously low. Every time my toddler’s voice started to get a liiiiiiittttle high-pitched and whiny, I immediately snapped. I knew he wasn’t feeling well (which he did not hesitate to remind me every few minutes), and I knew I was also feeling ‘under the weather.’ All in all, I wasn’t my best “mommy” to him or my other son, and that was very disappointing, since I chose to be home with my little ones for their first few years.
Flashback: “There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love.”
Recently I attended a Positive Parenting workshop with my husband. I went into the workshop thinking it would be for my husband, yet I walked out feeling both motivated and discouraged at the same time. Here I was, thinking I knew everything I knew about being a positive parent. Yet, in moments like today, I realized I had a lot to learn. Why was it so hard to keep my cool? Why couldn’t I recall all that amazing verbiage and techniques we discussed in the workshop? Then I realized something – well actually two things: First, disappointment comes from expectations; when you expect someone to act a certain way, then we are bound to be disappointed. We are all individuals. We all have a mind of our own, with our own opinions, experiences, and feelings. However, disappointment does not have to be a bad thing! Second, disappointment exists, because we care about that other someone. If we were truly selfish people and did not love others, than it would be easy to drop all expectations and therefore be free of disappointment. But what kind of life is that?
Therefore, I have decided I am going to not only practice positive parenting for my children, but also for myself. There are dayslike yesterday where I feel like a big child and want nothing more than to throw my toys and stomp out of the room. But then I remember I am the adult (or at least I am supposed to be…) Sure, I was running on empty and I may have reacted out of frustration, rather than patience. I know how important my behavior is in molding how I want my children to act. I also know that it is still early in their lives and they are open books, which means there is still time to change my behavior and show my children how I want them to be. I truly love, love, LOVE the little people who have the amazing ability to drive me bonkers on a daily basis, which means I am willing to FORGIVE myself for my “bad behavior.”
What is your favorite “positive parenting” technique?