Maybe you missed it in theaters, but “The Wrong Side” was playing in my house the other morning. Oh, come on, you remember that one, about the family with the kids who all woke up on the wrong side of the bed on the same morning? No? I think it got some kind of award or something… Oh. That was a different movie? Okay, well that’s what was playing at my house anyway. Let me warm up my home-brewed Illy and tell you the plot.
I have to admit, I’m exaggerating. First of all, there really is no plot to this post– just a bit of rambling. Second of all, Quinn NEVER wakes up on the wrong side of the bed. I have never met a child who is more cheerful first thing in the morning. God love him, I hope he keeps that eager embrace of the day throughout his whole life! The rest of us… well, not so much. Chloe was always similar to how Q is now, but she is up late studying or up early running just about every day. I shudder to think how our mornings would go with this sleep deprivation if she did not tend to be happy in the mornings. Will and Claire are like their mom… both go to sleep reluctantly at night and wake up reluctantly in the morning. Drives me crazy trying to get us three out of bed!
Anyway, there was an unusual degree of contentiousness in our house on that particular morning: people getting on each other’s nerves, and issues both real and imagined flaring up. I regret to say I scolded two and raised my voice– ok, yelled at– another. I don’t feel good about it. It was my attempt to put a stop to the nonsense. But then the three I had trouble with were gone for the day, and I was left feeling sad that we started that way.
Unfortunately, the same scenario has been playing out– at different times of day– all week. I’ve come to the conclusion that this is just one of those times we have to go through. I’m having to be tough and strict (which I hate) because I’ve let boundaries and expectations slip. I would much rather rely on my kids to exercise their good judgment and behave right than have to police them at every exchange. I know it’s lazy of me, but you might say I prefer to play the “good cop” role. The “bad cop,” however, is often on the road, and I guess human nature is such that we all sometimes need a deterrent to keep us in line. I’m holding on to the hope that if I just stay the firm course for a while, equilibrium WILL be reestablished and we can return to our happier, more peaceful ways.
Update: I was unable to publish this last week (for technical reasons I don’t understand). I’m happy to report that things DO seem to have settled down this week. But I guess that makes this something like a cold cuppa congealed coffee! My apologies, a fresh hot cup will be coming your way soon!