Sunday, June 24, 2012

This Weeks Practice: Intentional Grace

"I make this choice NOW, for this situation...Regardless of my less-than-great decisions two minutes ago."

Last weeks Practice was hard. It really wasn't any different than any other week- Friday found me pulling out my hair in desperation. It is hard to give and give and feel like all you hear is whining and shrieking in return. It is hard to feel like you're never enough.

But that isn't the truth. The truth is, I am enough. I am their Mama...They were made for me, and I for them. We're in this together...And no one wins by focusing on a lie. I am enough, there is grace enough...always.

So back to Friday. By mid-morning I was ready to ship the older two off to ...well, if they had boarding school for toddlers- that's where my kids would have been headed! I was DONE. I lost it. I was trying so hard! I was trying to eat my breakfast. I was trying to nurse the baby! I was trying to keep the girls from hurting each other! I was trying to eat my breakfast! I was trying to keep the fussy baby happy. I was trying!! I was TRYING! It was ugly. I yelled at the older two to cut OUT! That I wasn't going to intervene if they were hurting each other any more! They could take the bruises and hair loss! I was DONE!  I locked myself in my room (with the baby) for an hour. 

Suddenly a switch flipped! They went from sitting on each other and acting like little zombies- to playing nicely- AMAZINGLY- that entire time. I could hear their games, their chatter about their babies and the cakes they were going to bake (in their toy kitchen). They had a blast.

 Go figure.  

On a little Rabbit Trail...I am trying to figure out why that happens. And also, the balance. I don't want to be permissive- we are a radical non-violent family, but that doesn't mean the kids can do whatever they want! Especially violence towards each other.  But some times it seems, unless I am on top of them 100% of the time: Zombie Apocalypse in my living room.  In those moments you wonder- what can I do differently!? The only thing I can come up with is that 1) they are children and 2) I think in my desire to have well disciplined children, some times I have a tendency to over-parent (at least in some situations). Then we get stuck in this cycle of it becoming this attention-game. I am not feeding their underlying needs- just slapping band aids on the situation- but I can't meet the needs because we're in this weird band aid slapping cycle. I'll come back to that another time...

Okay, so some days were CRAZY. But you know what? We had really amazingly awesome moments in the week too. There were probably literally 150 times in the week that I set aside some thing I wanted, to bless and love on my kiddos. And the girls noticed, and some times would sweetly hug me and thank me. My kids are amazing. I did a lot of things RIGHT! And I need to celebrate those little steps. Because of my choices there were more hugs given...more kisses..More cuddling...More productive discipline (where children were really tuned-in and learning)...More stories read...More quiet togetherness...More JOY! 

It really is a ripple thing. Every right choice counts. 

So my Practice this week? Intentional Grace. I refuse to beat myself up for my hard moments. With small irrational children, they're going to happen. Some days when I am in an ugly cycle with one of my kids I want to throw in the towel "Well I've already screwed up- might as well keep going." (how illogical!) or "Well, she isn't being nice to me I don't want to be nice back!!!!!"  (so mature!)

This week I choose to say, "That was that moment, this is NOW...I ROCK! I can *always* choose to Love."

I was made for my kids, they were made for me. We can do this thing!

Here is to another week of loving my children...Let's choose to be gracious to ourselves...And our most precious gifts!
Who couldn't love this lil face? (Pip  @10 weeks old)

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