Monday, January 10, 2011

Day 8: Crisis Averted

I will choose to find a positive perspective under even the most negative circumstances.
I will choose acceptance over resistance.
I will choose to focus on the things I value about my children, not the things that drive me nuts.
I will choose to extend the same grace, love and forgiveness to myself that I try to lavish on my husband and children each day.

Remember that pizza I mentioned last week? It's still kicking our butts. Max has had terrible reflux and gas. His tummy hurts, he's got milk coming back up (thankfully not out!) almost constantly, he doesn't poo often enough, and he hasn't slept for more than 30 minutes on his own (thank god for bedsharing because he will sleep at night with me next to him). My usually content and perma-happy baby has been fussy, tired and frustrated for a week, leaving me...well...fussy, tired and frustrated. Note to self: Next time you try to convince yourself it won't be that bad, read this. 

So I guess this was the perfect week to start focusing more intently on these goals! I had worked for 15 minutes to help him fall asleep, and as soon as I had gotten into one of the many items on the to-do list, sure enough he was up and fussing.

I. Was. Done. I had hit the end of my rope and I was angry. Of course it wasn't his fault, he wants to sleep as much as I want him to sleep. So I wasn't angry at him, I was angry at the circumstances. But I guess that distinction doesn't matter one bit when it's the people around you who get hit with the anger anyway!

Best case scenario would have been to simply accept the circumstances. I missed the mark a little on that one, but I did handle the anger pretty well. I stood outside the room for a moment, did an internal scream, muttered a few less than kid-friendly words under my breath, then caught myself. I could give those feelings control over me or I could rein them in and take conscious control of myself.

Here's the usual internal monologue when I default: "I can't take this anymore. I've had it. He's never going to sleep again. I can't ever get anything done. And the old stand by, This Sucks!"

But here's the internal monologue I chose this time: "I can do this! This is not the end of the world. He will go back down, and if he doesn't we will find a way for him to be with me while I work. It will be okay. This is where we're at, so I might as well make the best of it!" I took a few deep breaths, repeated these things to myself and walked in with a smile. I had actually talked myself down from the ledge, which is amazing since I tend to resist even my own efforts. It felt great to choose to feel great despite the circumstances.

I nursed Max back to sleep and got back to my task. I'll never know for sure, but I'm willing to bet that if I had taken that angry energy into the room instead of the calm I finally came to, we would have had a very different outcome. Baby steps in the right direction.

1 comment:

  1. I always wonder how much they play off of our feelings. I've always tried to talk Truman down from tantrums in a calm voice to be the calm that he is not able to be for himself in that moment. But isn't it funny we still have a hard time doing this for ourselves?

    Glad you had a small victory.