Thursdays are never good evenings at our house. The kids get off the school bus exhausted from a long week, cranky, needy and emotional. I know this about them because they do it every Thursday afternoon. It doesn't help that Curt and I are typically exhausted, cranky, needy and emotional by Thursday afternoon as well. Today was no exception. In fact, I'd say we were all extra exhausted, cranky, needy and emotional.
Grant has been emotional all day. He found out this morning that he didn't make the "all star" water polo team and his two buddies did. We cried together about it, but I still think it's bothering him so he decided to practice being annoying. He invaded personal space and pushed people's buttons, especially mine.
A friend of ours in Indiana saw a Facebook post of mine about Paige. It went something like, "Paige didn't get a job or a sharing bag at pre-school today and hasn't saved enough money to buy a Pillow Pet yet resulting in her wailing, 'This is the worst day of my entire life EVER. Nothing seems fair and I am so mad.'" My friend chose to send a Pillow Pet cross country to Paige via Priority mail and it arrived today. Perfect timing given the fact that Paige was weepy at pre-school drop off today and super clingy. You'd think she would have no reason to add to the family misery, but she was tired, disobedient and needy from 5 p.m. until bedtime.
Kaitlin took gum from Grant without asking, which obviously isn't okay. However Grant gets free gum from a friend at school all the time and he would have shared if Katie would have taken the time to ask. Instead of being gracious, he retaliated by getting into Katie's "private stuff" and pretending to shoot a Nerf gun in her face. She completely lost her mind so I sent them to the guest room to resolve their differences. Katie was wailing and sobbing and Grant was prideful and argumentative. Oy! Did I mention all this happened while we had guests? Katie's poor friend was hovering outside the bedroom door waiting and listening and wondering WHEN if ever, her friend would emerge again.
Alli fell apart at precisely 7:01 p.m. because I said, "No I can't go to the show-your-parent-your-school room night at school, primarily because this is the first time I've heard anything about it. Maybe if you emptied the papers out of your backpack, I would have known about this can't-miss event and we could have gone." Apparently this special school night even involved "practicing." My suggestion to re-create the evening tomorrow when I'm at school for Kaitlin's music program was met with an emphatic "No" followed by more wailing and gnashing of teeth.
You would think I could hold it together. Really all I had to do was get through the hour-long bedtime routine and then I could take a collective deep breath. But no. I was tired, crabby, needy and exhausted and instead of being Spirit-filled and self-controlled, I lost it. Ranted and raved about trivial and insignificant things. Chose to be cold-hearted at bedtime instead of loving and full of grace. Berated instead of praised. It wasn't pretty. I sat in the loft, seething and bubbling toxic frustration listening to Paige and Alli say through their tears, "I wish Daddy was here. Why did he have to go to Haiti? I want Daddy to put me to bed."
I tried to pull it together to go in and comfort them, but I waited too long. All four of my precious kidlets fell asleep before I could get my act together and apologize. How ugly. I can't even tell them how sorry I am or how much I love them because they all fell asleep with Mean Mommy seared in their minds. I'm so ashamed and sad.
I can hardly wait to greet them in the morning, squeeze them and kiss them and tell them how sorry I am. It was failure of epic proportions tonight for me, but I thank Jesus for His sacrifice that washes over all my sins, for His forgiveness to wash me clean. Alli memorized "Fust John 1:9 - If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." Jesus, will you do that for me tonight? And thank you that tomorrow is a new day!