So today marks 8 years of marriage. Steve is traveling for work, but I decided to get out our wedding toasting flutes, or whatever they are called, and drink out of one of them in celebration. They had been in storage since our wedding and I was tired of them just sitting in a box, they were much too pretty for that. So out came the glasses. My small people were immediately enamored with them, like they are with all shiny things. As I turned to get the milk out of the fridge, I heard a crash. Of course.
I should’ve left them out of reach, it’s not my toddler’s fault that they dropped something glass. Nonetheless, I was sad, and when I’m sad, I default to anger. I’ve been working on actually “feeling” my feelings instead of going straight to being mad. Anger masks what I’m actually feeling, it doesn’t help me resolve anything. I’ve been getting better, I read an amazing book called Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids
– and it has done wonders for my household. That being said, I am human, I am tired, and I make mistakes.
Normally I don’t respond with love when I’m really sad or frustrated. Today, I did it right. I looked at my sweet two year olds face, as tears ran down her cheeks and I cried with her. I said “baby, I love you, I know it was an accident. I’m sad that my special glass is broken, but I’m not angry”. She said “Mommy, you aren’t angry?” Part of me wanted to be mad and yell at her that she did something wrong, but she already knew it. Telling someone that they messed up when the shattered pieces are laying in front of them doesn’t make it better, it doesn’t make it whole again, and it certainly doesn’t fix a thing.
I calmly got out the broom and swept up the pieces of the glass now covering the kitchen floor and focused on staying present. I allowed myself to feel sad and not deflect to anger. We cried together about “mommy’s special glass” then she went off to play in her playroom with her sister and I did some yoga to re-center.
I don’t have a lot of parenting wins in tough moments, but I’m holding onto that lone glass to remember that when something shatters, I can act in love. I don’t have to lose control. I can do hard things.