Monday, September 22, 2008

A Bad Start

Do you ever have those moments when you hate yourself for what you've done or said to your kid?

I just had one of those.

Liam slept late and, as he is our alarm clock, RxMan and I slept late too. So, we woke Claire up a few minutes late and didn't have all of the things ready for her to go to school- y'know packed lunch, bookbag in order, etc. (99% of the time I do all of this the evening before but Liam has been rising at 5! AM! for days and I thought I would have
hours before Claire needed to leave- ha!)

As I am frantically gathering her things, I also check her homework for errors and she has done over half of it wrong. Instantly, I flip into psycho-mom mode:

Claire, your homework is done wrong! Roar!"

"No, I followed the directions!"

"Grumble, grumble, roar, roar! No, you didn't! Now get over here and do it right!"

As this exchange happens, I know this is not the way to handle my still sleepy,
very sensitive eight year old but when the ugly head of my father rears, I almost can't suppress it. I am possessed with anger and disappointment and frustration and, for a moment, want to see her cry because I want a reaction.

Of course, the logical Toni and fairly good mom doesn't want her to cry. I want to shush her and rub her bed head and soothe her but, for a couple minutes, I am overcome with emotions that I detested in my own father, who always reacted badly to small situations such as this.

As my daughter, a wonderful, conscientious child, stands there with tears wetting her Hannah Montana nightgown, I feel terrible that I have begun her morning-her school week- with anger and rejection. I try to hug her and she shirks away.

My heart breaks a little more.

I apologize over and over- something my own father
never did- and try to mend the hurt. She leaves with a shaky smile and I feel like the worst mom in the world for sending her out into this cold world feeling so small and hurt on a Monday morning.


Life As I Know It said...

Oh, Toni, my heart breaks reading this. I have had similar mornings with my son. But you know what? I will bet that she will come home from school forgetting the whole thing. She knows you love her and we all have moments of saying things out of exhaustion, frustration...whatever. You love her. And she knows that.
Don't be too hard on yourself. We've been there too. Hope your day gets better. said...

I agree with the above commenter. You get a chance to do it over every single day, which is the best thing about parenting. And, you recognize you messed up a little. That's the important part.

wright said...

This happens to every one. EVERY ONE!

You at least recognize "the monster" when it appears and try to do something about it.

Hope your day gets better!

Kristi said...

I admit, we have had a few of these mornings since school started, too. I always feel bad afterward,m but I like your above comment where it stated that we get to do it over again every day. Thank Heaven for "do overs". Hugs!

MamaGeek said...

Yeah, that does happen to every one. The good news is you (a) know the difference and (b) can say sorry and (c) start all over tomorrow.

Kellan said...

I'm sorry you had such a bad morning. I had a pretty good morning, but the afternoon here sounds exactly like the morning you described - all the way down to the mom screaming things she regrets!

Hope you had a good vacation and then you came home to Ike - sorry about that and no power and all. Hope all is well now!

Take care - Kellan

Kellan said...

PS - I've missed you!

Missy said...

That is so heart wrenching when a situation like that happens - it breaks my heart to see my daughter's face fall to tears because of something I said. But - she knows I love her to pieces, and I am sure she will be okay. :)

mandy said...

Aw - know that you're not alone. I am actually always glad when I see posts like this, then I don't feel so bad. I know that we all have days like that, and we all care enough to feel bad about it, try to rectify it, and get a little better in the end. Take care!