Monday, January 16, 2012
Sometimes we have a bad day. Sometimes we have a morning where the wheels fly flaming off the little vehicle of our family before breakfast is on the table. Sometimes we have a day that make me want to weep or yell or slam the bathroom door or stomp out of the house and hit the ground running, not turning around until I am far away and exhausted.
In the past, I might have responded to conflict with any one (or perhaps all) of these. I am a woman with a temper. My childhood was spent in a dangerous home – a place where conflict meant violence. To this day I am quick to disengage and protect myself. It is as ingrained in me as my fingerprints. It is not, however, an appropriate response to a small pre-breakfast disagreement in our gentle and kind family trio.
The details are not important. We had a rough morning. There were tears and then that awful hung-over feeling you sometimes get from crying. On Facebook I confessed that we were trying for an emotional reboot and after a while, we got rebooted.
Here are some things that helped: sandwiches, deep belly-breathing, laughing at myself, praying the ever-eloquent “helphelphelp” prayer, folding laundry, drinking a very large glass of water, Katie reminding me to stop struggling against the quicksand and hold still. All of these things forced me to stop – to be present.
And then things got better.
Things settled down.
The sun comes out, or sets or rises.
We shake it off.
We move forward.
P.S. My computer says that helphelphelp is not in the dictionary. I think it should be.