Today was pretty miserable, from the drizzly weather to being late to a meeting and to-do’s piling high for both of us. The kids were tired and had a hard time getting ready for school without whining. And Dave and I were snapping at each other at dinner, which is very rare.
The truth is, rough days are a luxury parents don’t get to enjoy. Kids pick up on a bad mood, and if I snap at Dave they snap at each other and us. There’s a lot of articles on becoming a better parent. I am finding being a parent makes me a better person. We try harder, and we care more. Being a grump around each other was OK, because we understood it was just a bad day. Kids don’t get it, so we don’t get to.
We want our children to be strong, empathetic people. Kids learn by watching and mimicking. Even in a bad mood, I am still conscious of their eyes on us. It inspires us to pull it together and do better. Remy drove that home today by informing me he would be telling his teacher that I was being mean to daddy. Great.
I assure you, dragging ourselves kicking and screaming out of a funk is more draining than 2 1/2 hours of swimming lessons for toddlers! But we know it matters, and we know they’re worth the effort. So on a night like tonight, when we’re all worn down and our patience is fully absent, we dig deeper than we knew was humanly possible and find our way back to neutral territory.
Dave and I paused, hugged, and apologize to each other. We got in gear, serving up dinner to everybody and getting back to some laughter and family time. By the time we were singing the kids to sleep and tucking them in bed, we had salvaged our evening.