Today I found myself saying 'being a parent can suck.' It really can, right? Snow days and early dismissals don't affect my parenting anymore (and that will be true for you, too, one day, if it isn't already), but I remember. I remember feeling overwhelmed by trying to maintain some sense of routine in our family, feeling exhausted by all of the emotions and needs in one little house, feeling like I needed to take care of everyone but myself, and feeling like I couldn't face feeding everyone one more meal.
I hate to join the multitudes offering advice, but I have some for you (or maybe for the me that needed it):
Between the holidays, vacation, snow days, and extremely cold weather, some of us are feeling overwhelmed by our kids and responsibilities. Yesterday I escaped the house (although I didn't go for the long walk I could really use!) and walked past a woman muttering, "God help me" as she tried to herd her family into the store with her. Isn't that beautiful? Not "I want to kill them," or "Why the hell doesn't anyone listen to me?" but a simple (slightly desperate) prayer for help.
We do need help as parents. We can't do this on our own. Today, as I sit inside again, wondering if I have the guts to go for that long walk, I am sending love to the woman I saw yesterday and to all of us.
May we all remember to ask for the help we need.
May we find a quiet moment to refresh ourselves.
May we come home to the present moment, letting go of the fantasy life that makes us feel inadequate.
May we take a few moments to love ourselves right in the midst of life as it is.
May we have the grace to see our families as they are, opening to each person in this moment rather than comparing them to the fantasy kids we think we should have.
May we be blessed with a community that helps when we need it the most.
May we remember that this too shall pass.
Sending you love and light on this beautiful, bitter cold day.
My life and work are guided by the these core understandings: that all beings (including me!) are capable of transformation and joy, that healthy parenting matters profoundly, and that simple practices can support each of us.