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It Starts With Me

We’ve all been tromping around in a funk the last few days. Admittedly I would sooner spew venom at Lyle or Russell than offer a cup of coffee or juice. When and how does that happen? Is our house the only one filled with passionate, yet very crazy-ass people?

I layed around last night wondering how the hell I landed in this existence, frantic to find the place I really should be like a rat that suddenly stumbles into a trap lured by the aroma of an irresistible moldy piece of cheese, forced to gnaw off his own leg to escape.

Never mind the first simile that popped into my head involved a disease-carrying rodent. I turned off the lights and practiced breathing. Should people really need to practice how to breathe? I tried like hell to push the negative thoughts from my mind before sleep captured me, praying a little clarity would wander upon me in my unconscious state.

I love mornings after a good night’s sleep, but damn the first notion that pushed slumber aside was, it starts with me.

How could I, the Supreme Obsessive Compulsive Queen of Responsibility fail to acknowledge how my actions affected others in the house for the last few days? Cross glances. Forced sighs. Biting words. I want the latest drama to be their fault. Sure, they share responsibility for their actions, but I can’t say that I would sign up for the reciprocal end of me right now.

Here’s where I pull on my big-girl panties. Soft spoken apologies. Admissions of guilt. Lessons learned? I look at people who seem so even-keeled, nice, quiet and wonder if I’m defective. I mentioned here a long time ago that I went to my therapist one time and pleaded with her to make me nice. She looked me straight in the face and said, “You are not nice, you never will be, but why would you want to be?”

In that next hour, we discussed how “nice” was not nirvana. I left feeling good holding onto new and realistic labels, fitting for me. Empathetic. Loyal. Kind. F*** nice. It’s overrated.

However, this is not a free pass to enter Bitchland, but in many ways it opened me up to see all of me. The good and the bad of it is that I realized I needed to be quick at recognizing when I overstepped or more likely, stepped on my loved ones with my harsh words. As always, there is that silver lining lurking in the shadows of the storm. I am really good at apologies. I have to be. I get a lot of practice. I’m even trying to teach Lyle about the Art of Apology – he really sucks at it. (Sorry honey, but you know it’s true.)

So this morning as I sit, enjoying a leisurely cup of coffee since I took the day off, I contemplate what I’m going to say to Russell when he wakes up. I wonder at times how this 15-year-old can be so selfish and self-absorbed, but then I look at my reflection. At least his behavior is age appropriate. I wish I provided a perfect role model , but perhaps the best one is a realistic one.

Am I the only one who lives with her very own Jekyl and Hyde?


One Response

  1. My boys are 20 and 17. The younger definitely has his teen moments. Especially when he is behind on sleep. The other day he was quite unpleasant before leaving the house and I yelled after him “I love you even when you are grumpy.” That actually lightened him up a lot. My other son has outgrown the surliness and the look in the eyes that said “Mom, you are so stupid.” So I can say that this too shall pass:)

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