Sunday, April 11, 2010

Why Can't They Be More Like Me?

I just finished a post full of complaints and rants about my kids. But I didn't want to save it. My kids have been unusually cranky these past few days (during my husband 12 hr shift work week). It's been frustrating for me but I didn't feel like posting all the negative words. Sometimes when I complain on paper, it's not helpful to re-read it. It just makes me feel lousy. Like, "poor me", or something.

It's simply been a time when I fail to understand why my kids can't be more like me! I find myself repeating, over and over, "Be nice", "Don't do that", "Enough!", "Knock that off", etc. But, they ARE kids. It will be years before they understand the things I have already learned. To my daughter, most slights or inconveniences are the end of the world. To my oldest, annoying his siblings is an art form. To my "poor, neglected" middle son, it's an Alec-centered world. I spend an enormous amount of time trying to explain things to my kids to make them understand sooner than I did as a kid. But their minds just aren't there yet. When my oldest is embarrassed, he's not able to brush it off - he's half way to 15, that is the time of his life when being embarrassed is normal. I try to give my kids words to their feelings to help them understand their emotions. I try to give them nice words to say instead of insulting each other. I try to help them think through situations so they can see the bigger picture. All this is exhausting to me and I know I won't see any fruit of this effort for some time. Perhaps I work too hard on this but it is my hope that it will be worth it and they'll turn out better people for it.

I wonder if I frustrate God when I fail to understand what He's trying to teach me. Well, maybe not frustrate but, perhaps, He sighs when, yet again, Kate is floundering. Oh, how I flounder! I hope I can remember this paragraph the next time I go head to head with a child. Dear Lord, please give me what I need to be the best Mom I can to my kids. I don't need perfection - just less floundering!


jugglingpaynes said...

If you figure out how to deal with your daughter, let me know. Sierra entered a period of hypersensitivity and easy embarrassment about three weeks ago. I never know what's going to set her off and I can't remember if Marina was like that when she was seven or eight.

I'm crossing my fingers that they'll grow out of it. :o)

Peace and Laughter,

word verification: billism: belief in charging for services?

Mama Self said...

It's hard. Just remember that it's for their good as well as ours...we're always learning patience and trust. And we are never alone. It's good to teach them alternatives and not leave them to their narrow understanding of circumstances. It takes a while for them to move from one stage to another, but it's worth it to see slight changes along the way... The Lord bless your efforts!

Cate said...

My kids are older than yours and so I can say that yes, things do improve in general - but there are still plenty of times where I feel like banging my head on a wall and yelling at them "will you just grow up??!" - before beating myself up for not being a better parent.

*sigh* I figure that it's all part of the parenting journey. You do your best, leave the rest to God and remember that at the end of the day, they are individuals in their own right, and will be who they are meant to be.

Hope that sort of makes sense!