The Day my Patience Died
By Nicone Atthi
(RBU Join Date: 06/16/2010)
I guess we’re all suckers for attention and we’ll take it anywhere we can get it! Usually we get a lot of our needs fulfilled in the inner circle of family and friends, but there are other ways. We could start a website, write comments in our local newspaper, talk loudly to our colleagues during lunch, dance on the table at the Christmas party, tell jokes at every social gathering, or something completely different (please leave us a comment with your best tip).
Kids are no different and will stop at nothing to get the attention they need; from their friends, teachers and last, but not least, parents. (Like right now one of my children is sending me messages on msn from the other room; just while I wrote this sentence she sent me 14 messages. Could be it's time for a break?)
If you’re like me your parenting ideal says you’re endlessly patient, understanding and loving, no matter what! Well at times these ideals get severely tested. Take, for example the following…
My husband had left the country, leaving me in charge of the house and four children for a few days. Things were going nicely the first two days; we were really enjoying some great times together, making field-trips to IKEA, to playgrounds, to buy ice-cream, etc. On day three we were blessed with beautiful weather, but this was when things started to go wrong...
For the sake of the anonymity of my children I won't go into detail about who did what, but let’s just say that come evening one or more of them had done one or more of the following things:
- mashed boiled potato into the glitch under the kitchen sink
- poured salt all over the kitchen floor
- put toilet paper and towels in the bathtub (which was filled with water, by the way)
- peed on the sofa
- talked to me in an obnoxious way, using foul language
- put their hands in the butter cup; smearing butter all over
- thrown raw eggs in the garbage
- thrown toys out of their window
- Not to mention constantly arguing and whining about their sibling's wrong-doings and begging for yet another ice-cream!
Desperately clinging on to the ideal of life in tranquility with obedient and happy children dancing peacefully around me in white dresses, I could feel Patience gasping for air inside me, shaking with death cramps before finally, with a reluctant sigh, letting go!
For the sake of my own integrity I won't go into detail about what came to pass next (though I didn't lay a hand on anyone!), but let’s just say that come morning my offspring behaved quite politely and even offered to help clean the table after breakfast. Having spent some time in their rooms considering a thing or two about life might have done some good. It felt like "the quiet after the storm" and, like the mythological bird the Phoenix rises from its ashes - my Patience miraculously ascended!
Hope you enjoyed it.