I have discovered first hand today just how little good anger does in the home. After two sleepless nights, I admit that my patience hadn't just worn thin - it was a huge gaping hole. James was in London last night and today, and I just wasn't "in the mood" to deal with a baby who hasn't learned to sleep and a two year old demanding every bit of my attention.
I am grateful that children seem to easily forget our grown-up faults. Today I was short with Colin, I snapped at him, and I even resorted to sending him to his room (where he proceeded to hit his head repeatedly against the door while I tried to feed Caleb). I had no patience for what I considered to be his "antics". I left any cajoling or pleading or reasoning behind and often just picked him up and put him where I wanted him to be.
And now, at days end, I'm even more exhausted than I was this morning. I have realized that although at the time it seemed like less work, the negativity I brought into our house wore me down even more. The shorter my temper got, the more frustrated Colin became, and the less we got accomplished. Our ill moods seemed to stoke each others' fires until the entire house was filled with negative emotions. I remember reading somewhere that a mother needs to make sure there is always love and peace in her home, and that it is her responsibility to be the prime example of it. I can say there were none of these virtues abiding in my home today, and for that I am sorry now.
I sometimes forget that being two years old means that sometimes you do things without knowing why; it means that you can't always remember the rules; it means that you're testing and learning limits - and important part of growing. Ultimately, being two means that people need to dig deep and find that extra ounce of patience because you really are trying your best.
Thank goodness for his fleeting memory, and for goodnight kisses and "I love yous". And thank goodness for tomorrows, which bring the promise of a new day and a new try at ridding my home of contention and replacing it with love and peace.