You win some you lose some

I lost my patience at approximately 8:12 this morning.

Maybe it’s because I have a charmed life (I really do) or maybe it’s because I’m still new to mothering, but I don’t often feel like my bucket is scraping the bottom of the patience well. Today I ran out before we had even eaten breakfast. Doh.

For whatever reason, I was cranky. I was inexplicably exhausted after a full night’s sleep, worried I was getting another infection, and I just plain had a tough time being engaged and happy to help my girls.

Mackenzie is three, so she had averaged 2.4 “why” questions a minute since she bounced out of bed that morning. At 8:12, I was fixing her a plate of homemade peanut butter on homemade whole wheat bread (thanks, neighbor!) with three kinds of fresh fruit, and I realized we also had ripe mangoes. She LOVES mangoes. So I asked her with a determined smile, “Would you also like some mango with your breakfast?”

Her response?

“Why?” in a demanding tone.

My response?

I think I retorted something mature like… “What do you mean “why”? Seriously. What does that even mean? Can’t you just answer the question?”

I said that to a three year old. A really sweet one who constantly asks “why” because she’s curious about the world around her, and occasionally asks “why” just because she’s in the habit of doing so (as was likely the case with the mango).

Her lip started to quiver and she retreated from her post in the kitchen where she had been “helping” me make breakfast. I felt awful, but so dry was my well that after I apologized, I still had to force myself to be cordial the rest of the morning.

I plugged away, doing the minimum all morning to keep the girls fed, wiped, and occupied, but I just wasn’t feeling it. I was faking it, hoping for tomorrow to be a better day.

Then, as I was putting Mackenzie down for a nap (for the 2nd time that afternoon), she said something that made me stop and think. I always sing to my girls before they go to sleep and I had started “Walk Tall You’re A Daughter of God” (sheet music here). I was struggling to remember the words in the third verse and my sweet girl prompted me:

“Please remember always please that you are not alone..”

I was able to finish with, “He’ll take your hand. He loves you. He will guide you home.”

And in that moment I knew two things:

  1. I might have been having a bad mom day (ok, I definitely was), but I wasn’t all bad. At least I had sung that particular song to her enough times that she had remembered the beautiful words, and that’s something!
  2. I’m not alone. Not in dealing with a tough day, and not in parenting my girls. My Father in Heaven loves me. I matter to Him and the work I’m doing as a mother matters to Him.

(The picture doesn’t really relate to the post, but it does make me want to give Mackenzie a smooch so I thought it might help my crankiness. 🙂 )


About beanland

Scott is a family practice doctor and Anne is a full-time mother and teacher to three beautiful girls and one boy.
This entry was posted in I am a mother, Life as we know it, Tough Days. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to You win some you lose some

  1. lisa h. says:

    thanks for that post…I liked it and kinda need to read that just now.


  2. Liz says:

    Annie – How I loved reading this post!! You and I must have ESP. The past 4 days have been pretty rough for me, as Don is out of town, we’ve all gotten sick (fevers, pink eye, yuck) and my usual helpers (my mom, Randy) are also sick or out of town. Quite honestly, if it weren’t for a little break your Mom gave me a couple of days ago so I could get a quick run in (ahh, to clear the head), the *peace* and reassurance that my Heavenly Father gives me throughout the day and the tender comments my kids make to me every now and again, I’d be announcing my resignation.

    Being a stay at home Mom is absolutely the hardest job in the world (to do right). And it’s also the most important. I can’t think of a better way to “invest” in your child’s future than to be their friend, teacher and mentor during these seemingly long, but actually short years that we are blessed to have them in our homes. And you’re right, the most important person in the world is the one we should always remember is “co-parenting” with us – our Father in Heaven.

    We miss you guys already! Hugs!
    Aunt Lizzy


  3. wendeerosella says:

    This is awesome, Anne, thank you. 🙂 I’ve been having similar days, and before I just lose it and burst into tears, I remind myself, “My Heavenly Father loves me, and He doesn’t make mistakes.”

    I need to remember that He made me a mother, He gave me these kids. He knows it will be hard, but that’s why He’s always there. I like to think of a Heavenly Mother always supporting us too. 🙂


  4. Angie Kelly says:

    So sweet and I love that picture. We all have those days. I had forgotten about that song. What a perfect one to sing to little girls:)


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