Friday, May 22, 2009

Perspective

Yesterday did not start out well. The girls were tired when I got them up -- my fault really. I'd let them stay late at the park the evening before, which pushed back bath and bedtime routines. Rae had been whiny and obtructionist, fighting me every step of the way through bath and bed. I had hoped that the morning would be better, that sleep would solve some of the behaviour. But no. Tired and cranky, Leah was in tears, and nothing could fix Rachel's bad mood. We argued all through breakfast, she refused to wear the clothes I'd put out for her, and bitched about what I was putting in her lunchbox. I was distracted, trying to keep mental hold of the million things at work and home that I have to keep track of. Leah reminded me about soccer practice, and the fact that she needed new cleats, which I'd forgotten.

So, I was in a bad mood, the girls were in bad moods, and no one was behaving well. Then the girls started in on each other, and I snapped. I was slamming cupboard doors and yelling, and generally not behaving like a calm, rational adult. Everything was just too much. The house was a mess, we were running late, the gas tank on the car was almost empty, we were out of cat food, the clothes dryer was still broken, I had a meeting at work that I wasn't prepared for, everything was just terrible and overwhelming and just. too. much.

I took a deep breath in preparation for continuing to argue (a pointless, stupid argument) with Leah, when a thought crept in past all the tumult -- I bet Tori Stafford's mother would give anything to be having an argument with her daughter right now in a messy house with a broken dryer.

I stopped yelling and apologised. We waited while Rae went and chose a new outfit for school. And when I dropped them at daycare to catch the school bus, we parted with the usual hugs and kisses. All you need is some perspective to see what's really important, and what isn't. It's heartbreaking that sometimes that perspective comes at such a great cost.

(8-year-old Victoria Stafford disappeared on her way home from school in Woodstock, Ontario, on April 8. Surveillance camera footage showed her walking away with a young woman. Two days ago, a 28-year-old man and an 18-year-old woman were charged with her abduction and murder. Police are still looking for her remains.)

11 comments:

  1. I'm sorry things did not go well. Hopefully this weekend will be better.

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  2. Every day mundanities have this strange ability to spoil even the best of things

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  3. We've all been hit with a bit of that perspective. I can't bear it.

    Have a lovely weekend with your lovelies.

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  4. That hit really close to us too - with 3 daughters, and 2 right around Tori's age.
    My girls are pain to get dressed sometimes too... the one in particular will look at her drawers for the longest time - you think she's ready to go, but still isn't dressed!!!

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  5. Perspective. Yes. This is just the kind of kick in the face that is often required to make me stop whining about the many imperfections of my daily life and start appreciating...you know...the fact that we're all still here.

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  6. True...

    If it's any consolation though The Boy has been down right whiny all weekend.

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  7. eesh. hope the weekend was enjoyable for you guys...

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  8. I think there's something in the water and it's contagious. Sunday was major suckage here for the other adult inhabitant. Today it was my day. The weekend had been fine, almost genial.

    Sure hope Monday gives you all a fresh start.

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  9. Amen to that!

    We recently lost a dear friend to an accident - it forces you to take a look at your perspectives.

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  10. Well, I do get where you’re coming from, but we can’t let the tragedies in other people’s lives dominate ours. I do the same thing. Sometimes I’m afraid to tell my child “no” because I think she’ll run away like some other teens and get into all sorts of horrible trouble when I was just saying “no” to keep her from getting into horrible trouble. That being said, it’s better for all concerned if we don’t sweat the small stuff so much, but then that’s easy to say if you’re not in a position of having to be superwoman.

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