ok, what it comes down to for me was learning how to manage my own big feelings.
I have LOTS of BIG FEELINGS
I don't do anything by halves. This is very overwhelming for me and for everyone else in my world. Dh was Born to Be Mild, and this the only reason we work. He's the perfect chill for my fire.
I was a very very angry mommy. I yelled at my children all the time. Wrath was the bugagoo with whom I struggled, almost every moment of every day.
As I learned here at GCM to validate my children's feelings, I realized that I was also doing it to ME when I
was whigging out (often out loud
) and that I had stopped being the Screaming Mimi Mommy.
I was a mother I kinda liked.
I was a friend people weren't afraid of/intimidated by, because I was learning to modulate my big feelings all the way around. My oldest daughter noticed.
One day, after I had been doing this, apparently for a couple of years, I really went OFF on my children, and dd1 said, "Wow, I can't remember the last time you did THAT." blink blink
I was doing the happy dance
ALL OVER GCM because I realized that Wrath had been sent to the back of the bus and was no longer my initial reaction in every situation where I was unhappy with my kids, or unhappy in my life.
Validation is a powerful tool. Women are regularly taught, in the west, that our big feelings are unimportant and we should be more like men (whatever THAT means
) and that we should just stuff them down and "get over it" This just doesn't work. This is the guilt/shame model. Identification of my actual feelings pointed me toward solutions rather than frustrations in my parenting and in my life, in ways that "pure logic" never could.
on another note, something that has been another major part of re-parenting myself was learning the actual definition of the word Frustrated.
Frustrated means Blocked from a Goal.
when I validate the feeling of Frustrated in myself, I can then ask, "Why am I blocked from this goal? How else could I achieve it? Do I need to re-evaluate this goal?"
Frustration is a thief of joy in parenting. Understanding that I was frustrated and not just MAD, was really important.