Parenting is one of the most difficult endeavors I have ever taken on. Nothing tests your patience more than an angry, screaming child.
Since returning from my most recent trip to NY this week Miss M has been a hot angry mess. I’m guessing the timing of these two events is not a coincidence. My continued absence this week for medical appointments has Miss M clinging to me real tight and doing a lot of screaming.
Fortunately, we are having great success with Miss M’s new social worker therapist. Miss M is opening up more and more each time. She is sharing her anger and fears about mommy’s cancer. Using little stuffed animals to work through her frustrations. Asking questions. Expressing her opinions. The sessions are informative and reassuring for me too. I’m receiving confirmation to do what I know is best for Miss M. I’m learning new parenting tools, receiving support in my struggle to be a good parent through cancer, and understanding more and more about what’s going on in Miss M’s precious little head.
The picture of Miss M above was taken yesterday. It was “one of those days”… We had plans to go see the Dayton Ballet perform the Nutcracker… But things did not go quite according to plan.
First there was her hysterical fit about putting on her shoes & jacket… Which led to us being late for the ballet… Which forced us to sit in the “late” seats all the way in the back until intermission when they would allow us to sit in the seats we paid for… Of course Miss M couldn’t see from these new “late” seats and made her frustration known… Which led us out of the theatre… Where she ended up in a pile on the floor, endlessly screaming and crying (much to everyone else’s horror and amusement)… Finally, we decided to just go home…
What I had hoped and expected to be a beautiful festive family day, ended up being a day from hell. And I couldn’t seem to shake the bad energy off me. I carried it with me the rest of the day.
Then last night, watching an episode of Up All Night that I had DVR’ed finally gave me some perspective. Reminded me that days like this do happen. Life does not always go according to plan. Finding the humour in these moments is key. Laugh. Recognize the futility of expectations. Remember that we do not have control. Take a deep breath and just go with the flow and let life unfold.
And always remember that tomorrow is a new day.
So today I consciously made an effort to start fresh. I sipped my morning coffee from my favourite “Serenity” mug (the same one my mom used to drink from each morning)… I met Miss M where she was at (a valuable skill I learned in social work school) instead of imposing my own expectations or preferences on her… I paid attention to her… We laughed and played together… And aside from one minor incident over some M&M’s this morning we’ve had a pretty awesome day so far.
I realize every day offers an opportunity to start fresh. To let go of the past and welcome each new moment. Do things differently. Make better choices.
It’s been one year since I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. I am so grateful to still be here. To be feeling well. To have the opportunity to celebrate another holiday season with those I love. To live another day.
Wishing everyone a fantastic holiday – filled with serenity, beauty, love… And fresh starts
Peace. – T