Ground Yourself in Gratitude

Fall is about embracing change, and November is the month where we are reminded to ground ourselves in gratitude.  I’m beginning to believe that this isn’t a coincidence.  Change can be hard, but continuously reminding ourselves to be thankful for all that we have is the key to help us through change. 

Pregnancy is a difficult time where your body goes through tremendous changes.  By remembering to be thankful for the little life growing within, we can focus on the good and help to persevere through the challenges.  It has been almost 8 years since I had my last, but I still remember quite clearly all of those nauseous mornings, aches and pains, swelling, and exhaustion.  Then you have a teeny, crying, pooping, human alarm clock who is attached to your breast 24/7, and again we find extreme gratitude because despite the difficulty, that little baby is the best thing ever.  Then it’s toddler tantrum time, and wow… just wow.  You have to remember to be thankful for the strong will and big personalities. 

Change is hard; I finally had the baby stuff figured out!  Then bam, my baby is a toddler.  Then I blinked again and after finally figuring that out, my toddler is a big kid.  The big kid stuff has been super fun, but now our family is entering a new season, and I am going to need a lot of gratitude to get through this one. 

We have a fifth grade girl!  TWEEN. Omg. Deep breaths.  I thought the toddler years were filled with big emotions, but I was wrong.  The hormones are coming and my fear is that this is just the tip of the iceberg. 

The littlest things make her sob, and the hardest part for me is that if I try to help, she gets SUPER MAD, and if I don’t try to help, she gets … you guessed it, SUPER MAD!  I am enemy number one and the recipient of all the rage.  This once, teeny bundle of 7lb delicious baby joy, now unleashes all of her wrath on me.  I’m the meanest and the worst and I “don’t even care”.  I know my job as her mom is to love her hard and guide, support and teach her… but it is so hard when this smaller hormonal version of yourself is screaming at you.

She had been having a tough time recently with an allergic reaction on her legs.  She scratched it, it got infected, then looked like some form of the plague.  It was awful.  But more awful, was my poor kid trying to take antibiotics for the first time in her life.  Consequently, this past week will forever be known as “Pillmageddon”.  She apparently cannot swallow the antibiotics without chewing something, but sometimes she will accidentally bite into the pill and if she does, it’s this earth-shattering apocalyptic worst thing ever.  Screaming, yelling, gagging, crying, spitting, refusing to even try to swallow the meds for more than 20 minutes straight. Deep breaths.  Gratitude.

So I surprised her with the newest diary of a wimpy kid book, and told her how much I loved her and how proud of her I was for handling all of this like such a big kid. (Even though I’m still traumatized from dealing with her dealing with this!).  She was so happy and gave me hugs.  We sat and snuggled and it was such a sweet moment.  However, no less than 10 min later, her sister had the audacity to ask her a completely normal question, to which my beautiful tween responded with meanness and intensity making her younger sister cry. 

When I told her that it was not okay to be mean to her sister like that, she started defensively yelling and crying that her teacher was super mean to her at school (she interrupted her and wouldn’t let her go to the bathroom when she asked).  I told her that she cannot be mean to her siblings just because her bucket was low  (If you haven’t read the book “How Full Is Your Bucket?” to your kids, you should) .  She said her bucket was low and she was so sad because no one ever does anything nice for her or give her love.  I’m like, DUDE, TEN MINUTES AGO I SURPRISED YOU WITH YOUR FAVORITE NEW BOOK AND GAVE YOU HUGS AND SNUGGLES. Kiki looks up at me and says, “Don’t worry mom, Yianna just has the puberty.  It will be okay.”  I’m also grateful for my grounded middle child and hope “the puberty” doesn’t strike her in the same manner.    

So far, the only thing I’ve learned is that I can’t win, and I just have to keep finding the gratitude.  I am grateful that I am the person she feels safest to unload all of those big feelings on.  I am grateful to be there to help guide her and love her so that she can grow into a strong and confident assured young lady. 

We wish you all the joy of this beautiful Thanksgiving season.  We are all so blessed and have so much to be thankful for.

All our love,
Angie + Dr. Cap