Then I got cocky, lost sight of my triggers, quit keeping up with my touchstones and flew too close to the sun. Lesson One after first falter on my path to better parenting: Don't Get Comfortable Being Awesome. Because perfect isn't real and even though I didn't feel like I was faking it for that six weeks that I let all the irritations and challenges roll off like water from a ducks back, it isn't sustainable in that form.
Here, I made a short poem for you to describe my fall into the ocean.
(Note to readers: In this poem I take the role of both Icarus and Daedalus. And yes, that is why I see a therapist.)
My Perfect Parenting Failure As Told Through The Myth of Icarus and Daedalus
Look at these amazing wings I made. I think we're up and out of here!
I can't believe it, it looks so simple! Why wait another year?
Take it easy kid, it's harder than it looks.
Fly too low you drown, too high and your wax wing cooks.
Keep it sane, in the middle lane- slow and steady wins the race.
Hold your head up high, but avoid the sky and soon we're outta this place.
But the people! Look! They love our miraculous trick!
I feel so great, I just can't wait to soar above the clouds!
OH SHIT MY WING'S ON FIRE MY WING'S ON FIRE!!!!
That's what you get when you're fueled by hubris and ignore all signs of reason.
Now, I'ma let you finish and pick ya' ass up out the water, we'll try again next season.
When I say it's not that easy, please don't act all breezy, like you're the star of a parenting show.
Just try to get through with minimum grace and take it nice and slow.
Ahh, Greek mythology. So handy.
Now, the nuts and bolts, as they are in the here and now:
All it took for me to revert back to the more anxious, impatient, infuriated parent that I was a couple of months ago was a few well-placed stressors and an inattention to my goal of staying present.
In one week, I enjoyed a little surprise pre-cancer, a horribly painful torn meniscus and a visit with Phinny to the dentist which revealed she has a cavity. (I could pause here and describe at length the psychological turmoil I experienced upon hearing this news. Maybe you could let me know if you're interested and I could send you the book I wrote about it.)
This, combined with months of weather like we live in fucking Oymyakon, Russia, nearly pushed me over the edge. Then, (yes we are still in the same 7 day period here) I went to the dentist myself. Five cavities. The FUCK? It seems my 35 year old fillings are all going to pot at once. Thanks, silver. No wonder everyone wants gold.
Never underestimate the drastic effect on mood that a little period of chronic pain and relentlessly inhospitable weather can have upon one's ability to keep one's shit together. If you should be so lucky in all of this to run into PMS, well, it would serve everyone well to put on a helmet and just do what is asked. Like, immediately.
Anyway. Back on the horse. While I do LOVE to overanalyze, I'm going to skip the paragraph about self-hating for my slip back into asshole mom. Here's a dummy paragraph about it:
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________. And then I had to get a ring of twenty-two rabies shots. The End.
Today, I am going to:
Forgive Myself for lapse.
Read some support.
(Also, BUILD BETTER WINGS.)