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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

random thoughts on radishes and parenting

This was my lunch today. Rather picturesque, non?

The eggs of course from the hen house. The radishes from the giant garden. Both outside, right at my fingertips. I was telling my brother as I was slicing these spicy babies up that we had taken the kids to a nice restaurant as a goodbye to city life before we moved and that they had served radishes and fresh butter and salt as an appetizer. Well, of course, says my brother, its a traditional French dish.

Oh. Well. In any case I thought I was very fancy to have remembered it when poking around the garden to see what was what this morning. And yes. Its very good. Ha.

I have all these half formed thoughts swirling around in my head, about this move and parenting and life in general.

Really I dont want to think about my parenting skills in the past few weeks. Because I really truly royally have sucked at it. I am bad with transitions. The stress of it ate away at my (limited) veneer of patience and I have just been a raw, nasty beast. Okay. That is totally over dramatic. But oh, I had a few moments. Where that ugly inner self comes out and suddenly I find my self yelling in the three year olds face and she tells me its okay mama dont cry or worse please dont be mean to me mama. And little man cringes as I stomp my feet aand cry out please stop fighting. And damn it. I suck. Because I didnt keep it all from them. I let them see my stress. And it made it harder on them.

Do you have these moments?

I tell myself, but I went back and apologized for it, in all instances (maybe three or four times this happened) and explained that mama is sad or frustrated or overwhelmed and that we all have emotions and it is okay for them to see that mama has them too and that what is important is that we say sorry and love each other no matter what. But still. I wish I could be smiley and delightful all the time. I wish my layer of patience were thicker, harder to disrupt.

I was barely holding it together moving day. And as I was muttering under my breath, nursing baby to sleep in the ergo while picking up toys and odds and ends suddenly I found myself thinking that famous phrase from the Spiderman movies.

"With great power comes great responsibility."

Yes. Crap. This is true. I have the power to shape my child's day, set the tone, power over their little worlds. And with that I have a reponsibility, to show them love, to show them grace, to show them how to hold it together when the world is stressful. But then again, to show them forgiveness and repentence too. That mama can admit when she is wrong or scared or worried, that these emotions are okay to feel, but that under it all, through it all, is the thick thick love of family, that nothing can change.

And the difficulty of the past few weeks also made me realize that mama needs to take care of herself too. Although the how of that is always hard for me. (But that is another post. ) That veneer of patience is much thicker and more stress resistant when mama is rested, cared for, filled and fulfilled. My morning cup of coffee in the mama chair (now in storage, sniff) was essential for that but it went to the wayside as moving stress kicked into high gear. Morning coffee was instead sipped on the go while putting away another box of stuff, with baby on my back in the ergo. The front porch of the farm house here may serve this purpose, but some kind of morning ritual needs to be reinstated. And then blogging too, where I air out my thoughts, that has obviously been neglected. And, like many writers out there, I need writing to process, to feel, to figure shit out.

So, those are my random thoughts on parenting and radishes. Spicy, tasty, earthy goodness. The real stuff of life.


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