These past few weeks have been exceptionally taxing in the area of training and discipline. At times I have felt as though all I'm doing is saying "No," and reminding the children of their lack of obedience. "Do it the first time I tell you." Mixed with the disobedience, (which, hey, even I struggle in that department) comes what feels like constant sibling rivalry! I don't know if it's just the ages of my children, (6, 4, 3, &1 ).... or if they dislike each other more than the average sibling group, or perhaps my tolerance level for little bickerings is less than the average mother. I don't know! But I have felt extremely repulsed by their banterings.. screechings... and full out physical fights. It exhausts me. And doesn't make me want to be around them.
So... after waking before my kids, which I try and do every morning, even on weekends, having my prayer time, praying for each child, praying for our day.... the children woke up. I don't think 15 minutes went by before I was ready to send everybody back to their beds! You know the kind of morning? Demands about breakfast, the wrong color bowl, the wrong size cup, "No I didn't want my toast cut!" "No, Mom, I wanted just jelly, not peanut butter AND jelly!" Ah!
After a morning like this, with countless other run ins, disobedience, and rudeness throughout the day, how do we redeem this time? Counting these situations as "teaching opportunities" is getting old for this mama, on this day!
Today we played Tag. I was "IT". I ran around the yard chasing my kids and they screamed in delight. I got exercise, burned off some steam, and the kids were thrilled to have me play with them even though we'd fought and cried and... whatever.
Somehow... it felt grace-full. I think we redeemed the day in those 10 or 15 minutes of running around.