We're experimenting with letting little J hang on our back porch "unsupervised". One of us is on the other side of the open window into our kitchen, and as long as he stays on the porch reading in his rocking chair or blowing bubbles, we can see and hear him and all is good. However this morning he made a break for it, and before I knew it, I spied my son, wearing a floppy sun hat, striped pajamas and fireman boots, running across my neighbors' yard. I broke out the door in hot pursuit, also still in my pajamas, and man we were a sight to see. The more pregnant I am, the harder it is to wrestle with my very stubborn, wiley and muscular three-year-old, and it wasn't even 7:30am before I felt physically maxed out. Combine this pre-caffeine chase with a physical inability to keep him in a time out for nearly giving me a heart attack, and I felt a complete mom-failure. Then, see: lack of caffeine for my inability to succinctly articulate my frustration and feeling of inadequacy to my husband who, late for a meeting and trying to get in the car and go, was a bit flummoxed as to why his entire family was in tears prior to the 8 o'clock hour. All in all, just not a good scene here at Casa SMJ this morning.
A bit later, while trying to collect myself with some much needed coffee and the little man happily listening to music in his room, I saw the quote/image above posted by a friend on Pinterest. So timely. I know this poster was meant as athletic inspiration, but for me at this point it just applies to all areas of my life: physical, emotional, athletic, maternal, marital and beyond. When you're feeling defeated, salvation comes not in thinking that there will ever be a time in life without challenges, but in knowing that you'll continue to gain the wisdom and skills to rise to the challenges and meet them head on. Every failed time out brings strategies for how to handle discipline better the next time around. Every tongue-tied moment in spousal communication brings an opportunity to walk away, exhale, get down to what is really bothering you, and learn how to say it straight and calmly the next time around. Every bit of patience lost is a chance to gain it back and figure out how to keep your cool in the future. I just have to believe that I'm going to keep on getting better at this. Right?
Here's to facing down our challenges with bravery and humility and to the power of positive thinking. And here's to vacation! Bring it on.