I’m pretty sure that I have a post already labeled this but it fits right now so I am using it again. Maybe I’ll make it a theme. Every Wednesday, I’ll pour out my heart about how I have lost my patience. I would like to be more patient. I would like to be the kind of mom who doesn’t fly off the handle when met with disrespect or laziness or general nastiness/crankiness. Living with a teen is trying every last ounce of patience I have.
We have entered the stage of “I love you/I hate you” and “Go away/I need help” and I am hating it. I know the natural progression is for him to want his freedom and that all teens go through a phase where they think their parents know nothing. I know. It might have been a hundred years ago that I was a teen but I definitely remember that stage. You want so bad to be an adult (what little idiots we were, huh?) while at the same time not having any of the means to do what you want (transportation and money). Every single day there is an instance of Nico yelling or crabbing about something and then wanting to hug me and being sweet. Even though I know what it is, it still leaves my mind reeling. It leaves me emotionally drained. And leaves me drained of patience.
I want to be the kind of mom that does not yell, “I don’t care! Whichever one you want!” after Isabella asks for the fifth time, “Which shirt should I wear?” after I’ve already told her which one I like. I yell this because all day long I am answering questions like “Why do we have to go to the store?” “Why do we have to eat breakfast?” “Why do I have to take a nap?” “Why is Rolie Polie Lolie (Olie) not on?” It would be so nice if someone took the initiative and I didn’t have to make a decision or answer a thousand questions. Take Tommy, for example, a lot of times he comes downstairs in clothes that don’t match or marginally match. I just send him back up with a few suggestions. Belle, being the kind of child that is afraid to be wrong, won’t even try. I’m not asking her to choose a college. I just want her to choose a shirt. I want her to ask for help or advice on the big stuff but choosing what to wear should be all her.
By the end of the day, after doing things for everyone with not so much as a “thank you”, I have zero patience. The house is usually in shambles because as much as I pick up after Gia throughout the day, the big kids get home and they need to do homework and want a snack and have to get ready for practice. On top of that, I make two dinners every night so Gia pretty much has the run of the house from 4-7. Wait, did you just ask why I make two dinners every night? I’ll tell you so you can feel like, “Hmmm…it could be worse.” Nico has lunch first period which I think is around 9:30 or 10:00. I send him with things to eat between classes but because he needs enzymes, it’s tough. He then goes to football and by the time he comes home, he is like a rabid beast looking for food. He wants to gain weight so badly that I want to do what I can to help him. I tried to make one dinner and have it ready earlier but there wasn’t much left when the others got home so I make one at 4 and another one at 6:30. Plus there is no way Gia could wait that long to eat so she eats with Nico when he gets home and then we all eat as a family when the others come home. I am aware that this sounds crazy. Trust me, it feels crazy most nights but if it means Nico will be able to put on some weight, then it is worth it.
I want to be the kind of parent that understands that my teen is just trying to find his way…that he is probably dealing with a lot of uncertainty right now so when he’s quiet or brooding, I shouldn’t take it personally. I want to be the kind of mom that knows my daughter is at a time in her life when she, herself is facing changes and she needs encouragement to know that she is beautiful no matter what others say or think. I want to understand that the way my son gets a lot of attention is by being goofy or making others laugh and I really need to remember that at 2 years old, your whole world is the unknown so you can’t help but ask a thousand questions a day and who better to answer them than me? Who better to give my teen space while still letting him know I love him and I’m proud of him? Who better to encourage Belle? Better me than her looking elsewhere. Who better to be Tommy’s most encouraging audience? Me. It should be me.
If I could find some patience…that would really help it be me.
How about you? What makes you lose your patience? What are your tricks for having more patience?
Pouring my heart out with Shell today.