I quite literally hiss at my adorable, darling, angelic children who have been driving me up the wall. All. Day. Long.
I love being a mom. I could fill my heart up and be content forever and ever counting all of the blessings that are my life.
But today, was sucky. The kind of sucky that a mojito couldn’t fix. And neither could the sunshine. Or the dancing. Or the books. Or the snuggles. It was just plain sucky.
So how did this happen? How did I get here? Telling, yelling, hissing, for the love of God hissing, at my adorable, darling, angelic children. Clean. It. Up.
Big kids yelling. Baby crying. Dishes piling. Garbage smelling. Dog yelping. Dog peeing. Dog food spilling. Everywhere. Clean. It. Up.
I am completely surrounded, and overwhelmed, by the needs, the noises, the messes. My ponytail is falling out. I have God knows what spilled on my shirt. I can smell dog on me. And I’m just plain done.
My patience? Done. My sense of humor? Done. My deodorant? Also, unfortunately, done.
Why? Because it happens. Because every once in awhile I just plain run out of steam, mojo and endurance to make it through the long haul (read: bedtime) with grace. And I make mistakes. And the day ends up as sucky as the aftermath. The “aftermath” being that icky feeling in the deep down bottom of my soul that says that hissing was probably a bad move.
And while it’s easier, much more fun and way, way prettier to look at the sun-shining, butterflies-flying, everybody-smooching bits of motherhood, some moments, hours, days…just aren’t like that.
So I take a steaming hot shower, the kind that turns my skin bright red. And I wash this day away. The smells, the sounds and the touches are all gone. I come downstairs and sit completely still. The big green chair wraps me up. Soft, cozy, giving. My feet? Are up. The house? Is quiet. And blissfully so at that. My ice water crackles. And the almond clusters are divine.
It’s making a plan (and checking it twice) to own and to fix the mistake. It’s gifting myself the chance to do better next time. More sleep, more coffee, more deep breaths.
I sit. I relax. I breathe deeply. And I let go. I let go of the chaos, the snaps and even the hissing. It’s daunting in every possible way to reflect upon a moment in time that I’m so, so not proud of. And then to share it with you! But sometimes looking at “it” right there in print, on my mind, in my heart, makes it feasible to reach right on out, grab it, crumple it up and throw it away.
And while quiet reflection is welcome, necessary and rejuvenating at any time, it’s exactly what the month of Elul is about. In Aramaic, Elul means to search, which is appropriate, because this is the time of year when we search our hearts.
Feeling that awkward, uncomfortable, betwixt and between feeling of looking in the mirror and seeing not only those roots that so need to be done, but the bad moments, the hisses if you will. And finding the heart, the guts and the glory to apologize. In this case, to my children. And perhaps, to my husband, who let’s just face it doesn’t get the warmest of receptions on a day like today.
And it’s also knowing that “hissing moments,” while certainly not strive-worthy-facebook-fodder, are normal and natural and…okay. I’d like to think that every once in a great while, you’ve hissed at your children, too.
So you and me, let’s stand side-by-side, shoulder-to-shoulder, hiss together and clink mojitos. And then let’s breathe a sigh of relief that tomorrow will, indeed, be another day. And we’ll do better then.