Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Learning to Manage your Disappointment

This morning was a teachable moment.  At 3:23 am I was awakened by the sweet voice of my son.  He was telling me that his big sister had thrown up in the bed.  I sent her to wash up... stripped that puky bed and made a pallet in the living room for my two other children.  At about 5 am she came to me in tears because she was supposed to attend a breakfast at her school with her dad.  She had been anticipating this event for a week.  She cried and cried and in my efforts to console her, I told her that being sick was unfortunate, but it happens.  She cried and said but mom what if I miss Thanksgiving with the whole family because I am sick?  I then told her, we will just eat at home, and mommy will spend lots of time with you to make it fun.  She looked a bit apprehensive but she later told me I was the best mommy.  I then told her that I was striving to be the best, but sometimes I come up short. (I probably should have just said thanks.)  But she hugged her "wonderful" mother anyway.  She is awesome like that.

I am extra sensitive to the disappointment in my children because I was often disappointed.  I had very strict parents, and punishments and whippings were meted out often.  I remember being put on punishment and not receiving anything for my birthday. Or being told I couldn't go to the movies because of some phantom infraction.  I internalized a lot of anger and distrust.  I was often sad because of always having things I looked forward to taken away.  Over and over again. Yet I did not give up hope.  I was ever the optimist as a child. Although many days I cried about it.  I realized that my parents were parenting the best way that they knew how.  So I always forgave them when they disappointed me.

 As I look at my life I have had some disappointing and devastating things happen to me but I found a way to overcome them.    Life is full of disappointments, and sometimes I feel as if I have had way more than my fair share.  Yet I keep pressing my way.  It is imperative that you get used to things being disappointing because life can be disappointing....It's all about how you choose to deal with it.

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