In the Turnaround

"If you can't have grace in the moment, have grace in the turnaround."--Heather

I am not so good at mornings.  I'm not grouchy...well, I'm not always grouchy.  My main problem is that I love those "last five minutes" of sleep so much that I never give myself enough time.  I'm always flying out the door at the last second.  Which nearly works when Sweet Husband is around to feed and dress the Kid, but gets dicey when--as with this week--my partner-in-crime is out of town.

This morning, the Kid and I were not running super late.  We were actually right on the cusp of on-time, with ten or fifteen minutes to spare when I sat him down for breakfast.  

But then we hit trouble.  He took a bite of cereal.  And then he jabbered and talked and played with his spoon for two or three minutes.  Then he took another bite of cereal.  And then a few more minutes of non-eating activity.

I cajoled.  I removed every distraction I could.  Eventually, though, we just had to leave it, and when I impatiently pulled the plate away from him, his face melted into a puddle of trembling lips and tears.  Clearly, I was not only starving him and keeping him from his full learning potential today, but also teaching him to bolt down his food, which would undoubtedly lead to lifelong problems with obesity and an early death from related health issues....

OK, that's a little over-dramatic.  But truly, at that moment I felt like a horrible, no-good, very bad mother.

However--and this is why I led with Heather's quote--the great thing I'm discovering about this mom job is that you have to screw up really, really bad to actually get fired.  You don't get true do-overs, but you always get a chance to do better.

Tonight, we made dinner together.  I said to hell with the water bill and the kitchen floor, and let him play at washing dishes while I cooked.  We walked downtown for a cookie and put the chickens to bed and I let him bring a stick inside and bang it on the side of the bathtub.  

If you can't be the mom you want to be in the moment....