Thursday, February 4, 2010

Attitude Shift

My Mr. has been traveling for the past week. This is not the norm for us, and it wears on the kids and me. To put it mildly, I've taken on a Mommy Dearest persona more times than I care to count. It was ugly. It pained me. It hurt my kids.

Sure, I got plenty of opportunities to model apologizing to my kids. I prayed a lot. ("Help me, help me, HELP MEEEEEEE!!!") I was humbled. But I still wish I could do it all over again, these flimsy silver linings aside. After some serious mental self-flagellation, God led me to this verse this afternoon:

Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.
Philippians 4:8

Huh. So, it's not such a good idea to dwell on my mistakes? It's better to think positively? Time for an attitude shift. I was tired of being Mommy Dearest, so I channeled June Cleaver (minus the pearls and the pumps).

Today I found a book I thought Petronella would enjoy. I read and napped with Paco. I picked up after the kids, thanking God for their laughter and play instead of grumbling about their oversights. I made chocolate chip cookies. I bounced between assisting Petronella and her buddy with their playdate adventures, and giving Paco some individualized attention. I defied my usual temptation to try and get something crossed off my to-do list. I ate a couple chocolate chip cookies. Mmmmmm.

It felt good. It wasn't all smooth sailing. Petronella had some verbal venom to spew. 
Paco  felt left out and whiney. But I stopped myself before I opened my mouth. I asked WWJD? ...thinking of both Jesus and June. I mostly stayed calm, cool and collected. I kept looking for whatever was noble, right, pure, lovely, etc. God helped me a ton. Thanks, Big Guy.

Thanks, too, to my favorite sitter, who showed up fifteen minutes early for a babysitting appointment that I totally forgot I had scheduled to give myself a break during Mr.'s absence. But instead of beating myself up for my lame brain, I just said, "Time to take more fish oil tablets!" And I thanked God for pleasant surprises.

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