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40 weeks pregnant PLUS 2 DAYS! Seriously, aren’t third babies supposed to come early?? I’m walking a tight line towards being induced at this point because my patience is shot. Then, this morning, adding to my feelings of completely being done, both the boys were in some sort of mood and didn’t want to play with the kids at the YMCA. Then it got worse, I went in to play with them for a bit, and help encourage them to find some fun toys and kids, and they were grumpy and totally not into it. Then, out of no where, a crying little boy glued himself to me and I couldn’t put him down. He wanted me to walk around and hold him. “Um, I don’t work here. I just want get on the elliptical and try to get this over-sized baby out, and now I can’t put this poor little boy down because I don’t want him to cry!” I was stuck for a little while, then I literally tip-toed away, hiding from my kids and this other little boy. The elliptical was not successful in starting contractions, and I’m still sitting here attempting to type over my belly. I sulked down to get the boys, feeling less-than-accomplished. Benjamin came out with a total frown and angry eyes. Great. I was hoping some play time and distance from me would transform his mood. He was hiding one of the YMCA red cars behind his back. He wouldn’t get it back. I wanted him to give it back on his own, but I was really struggling to bribe/explain why he needed to give it back. He threw it at the girls face. “I’m so sorry!” Luckily, she is our favorite care-giver there, and the sweetest person ever, so she wasn’t too offended. Benjamin proceeded to lay on the floor and pick his nose, ignoring everything I was trying to say to him. I had to drag him in one hand, Jack in the other who thought that we were playing the “Mommy drags the boys game” and copied Benjamin. Ugh. Patience levels dramatically reduced and its only 10:30am. But, it does feel better to vent a bit doesn’t it?
Pregnancy and momlife really tests patience, and I started thinking about how quickly I go into complaining and venting when my patience runs thin. I shouldn’t be complaining about pregnancy and a late baby, when I am so blessed just to be pregnant! I realized I start sounding like a two-year-old. Because I complain mostly in my mind to myself, there’s no one to say, “stop whining. you have everything you could want, why are you whining?” That’s what I say to my boys. Now I realize why they do it. It feels better for a moment, when something isn’t right, so just whine about it and receive empathy.
Its the empathy that soothes the uncomfortable place we reach when we our patience jar is empty. Just having someone acknowledge how you are feeling, say that they understand, and that its okay to feel that way – feels better. I don’t do that for my boys. I jump straight to the “stop!” reaction, where I just want to cover my ears because I am so tired of hearing the whiny voices over and over. But, what they are really looking for is acknowledgement of a need, and that something is uncomfortable. Often times there’s a toy they can’t reach, they want a different shirt they want to wear, their sock is twisted, there’s not enough cream cheese on the bagel, they want a red race-car and the white one isn’t cool anymore…the list goes on. I can teach them more patience by showing them more patience. Rather than saying, “Stop Whining,” I can say, “Oh no, I see your sock is twisted, can you ask me nicely to fix it?” This might be in my dream world, to have that amount of control in the midst of all the messy, craziness, but I am going to try. I am going to work harder at showing more patience, to help them understand what that looks like. I like to set goals, and this is going to be one of them. To pursue a more patient form of communication with my children, even when I don’t have any because I love my children, and I want them to know it.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-5
“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12