We all have those days when from the very moment we set foot out of bed the day seems to unfold in natural chaos. Yesterday was one of those days for me. Looking back now, this morning over coffee, sitting at my computer it is easy to laugh; yesterday in the midst of the chaos there was little humor to be found.
I could not get my youngest to wake up, or to get moving. She was late for school. I had set my entire day aside for one particular client only to have her cancel on me and reschedule later in the week.
With my day suddenly free I put out a few phone calls to try and schedule some massage clients that have been waiting to book with me. While waiting for return calls from my clients I redirected my energy to writing and dove head first into some articles that have been eagerly vying for attention to be put paper. My daughter called from hair school distraught that she had locked her keys in her school locker. She inquired if I was able to bring her the spare locker key that she has here at the house. I told her I was unable to bring her the spare key as I was waiting to hear back from a massage client that may be needing a massage. She was extremely frustrated with me, and exasperated she said, “Fine, I will just have them cut the lock off! But I don’t know when I will have the time to go buy a new lock!”
After getting off the phone with my daughter I glanced at the clock and realized it was nearly ten o’clock. It suddenly occurred to me that I had not seen my son. Now normally I am not home at this hour and I am not certain what time he leaves the house to begin his day, but I could only assume that it is generally earlier than 10 a.m. I went downstairs to his room and knocked on his door. “Son,” I said, “You do know it is ten o’clock right?”
“No! Crap! I set my alarm for 9 a.m. I don’t know what happened and why it didn’t go off. Why didn’t you think to wake me up sooner?” He replied as he was madly dashing out of bed, flinging open his bedroom door and headed for the laundry room to retrieve what I assumed to be clean clothes.
“I didn’t know you had an exact time you needed to be up by this morning, son” I replied
I returned to my computer and my writing. As I tried to regain focus I could feel the frustration creeping in. Why is it that my “parenting efforts” never seem to be enough for my teenagers. I felt myself being sucked into the space of “war”. Heart of war wants to enroll others into the agenda of proving I am right and they are wrong.
One of my girlfriends had sent me an email just before all of this occurred this morning, she was venting to me her frustrations with her family. I immediately pulled up her email and began composing a reply, “My turn to vent” I said at the opening of my return email to her. I explained the occurrences of the morning and my absolute frustration with two events. I told her I felt neither was my issue to take on, that both issues were that of my children and I was not going to give my power away to them or the situation, that I was doing my best and “my best” got to be good enough. Although in hind site, I did give my power away, I chose into upset and frustration in the moment. Thankfully the time I spent there was minimal and I snapped back quickly.
My girlfriend with her witty humor replied that she loves me regardless. That she did not need me to save her but or read her mind, one the job wouldn’t pay well and the second would be a very short story. And then she served back to me the exact advice I had given her earlier that day.
“Family/children are our divine paradox in life they that are the greatest source of our love and joy can also be sometimes the greatest source of our irritation and aggravation. We as mothers continue to love them unconditionally, regardless.”
I had to laugh! I did tell her that only a few hours earlier, and yes, there I was experiencing it for myself. So laughing, it was easy to chose back into a heart of peace over a space of heart at war with my teenagers, I love them regardless. Their stuff gets to be theirs, I am not willing to take it on, or accept it as a reflection for who I am as a mother, even if in the moment both tried to enroll me in that possibility. I released it with gratitude for having had the experience; they get to be accountable for their own stuff, cut off locks and waking up late for work, neither is mine to own.