Swear Jars and Slap Fights
I never would consider myself the pinnacle of peaceful parenting. There’s not much chill or zen about me, I’m pretty EXTRA extra about everything, but my anxiety, impatience, and need for control is all lit up maximally by parenting. As much as I desperately wanted these kids and am keen on them, at some point every day since they’ve shown up I’m like, “Boy, you’re STILL here, huh? Woo, this is a lot. Almost too much, one might say?”
Once when the little one was a toddler, she and I had a slap fight in the bathroom and I’m pretty sure she was the one who finally called it and insisted we handle ourselves more maturely.
I try to be calm and cool, but at best, I meditate through gritted teeth. And that was all before the pandemic.
Now that we’re on day number 378 of being together in this exhausting, claustrophobic, endless loop, I’ve lost all semblance of even trying to be “nice” or “reasonable.” And they’re with me. We have fits of rage and just sort of…lie down on the floor when…it’s been a while. We have all just taken to swearing like sailors…even those of us who still have little kid minor speech impediments swear like ‘sailahs’.
But they start back (hybrid) in school in a few weeks with…other humans…and I really don’t want them to get suspended for cursing, just when I finally get a break. So, I need to crack down on their misbehavior. They really need to fall in line and be better citizens.
I started a swear jar. One for the kids, one for the grown-ups. AND…well, I’m afraid I’m not going to be able to pay rent this month after I pay what I owe the jar. They might have to float me.
Sigh. They’re doing their very best to raise me, but there’s only so much they can do.