I found this challenge over the weekend and was excited to start today. Parenting is not for the weak. When I feel overwhelmed because I can't keep up with the laundry, the dirty dishes, the diapers that need changed, the meals that need prepared, the yard that looks like a jungle...I realize that I spent the whole day forgetting about the little things that matter the most.
Every morning there are four happy, smiling faces that greet me before my morning coffee. The pretend games are played all day long. I need to sit and watch more than I do.
I am surrounded by superheroes and Barbies that are damsels in distress.
I live in a castle with princes and princesses that love to slay dragons and dance to music.
My couch is a pirate ship and the pirates take turns walking off the plank into crocodile infested waters.
My table is a tent where my children go camping and tell funny stories.
My tub is an aquarium where I watch my slippery, giggling "fish" who love to splash.
Why do I allow myself to stress? There is no need for me to be. I need to slow down and enjoy the life that I live right now in this moment. These beautiful, happy children will leave the nest and I don't want to look back and realize I wasted my time trying to do other things that seemed more important at the time.
I decided to start today and I read Day One. Go the entire day without raising your voice. In less than half an hour since reading the challenge...I was challenged. One of my children spilled a whole bowl of milk and cereal all over the table, the chairs, and the floor.
My son was afraid. I could see it in his face. He was waiting for me to yell and be upset with him. Instead I kept my voice level and told him he needed to be careful while I cleaned up the mess. I felt so much better than how I feel after I yell and get upset. I looked at my son, and the look of relief on his face spoke volumes.
Why do we yell? What's the point?
I can already tell that this challenge is not going to be easy, but I'm excited to make a lifestyle change now while my children are still young! I still have a chance that most of their memories of mommy will be pleasant ones.
I encourage all parents to take this challenge. We all have room for improvement in our relationships. Our relationship with our children is not any different. These little ones are our future. Let's raise them right!