my night as a mean parent, thoughts on Facebook, and why I don’t care to censor myself anymore

I believe in kindness.  I really do.  I try to choose kindness whenever I have a choice…

But I often fail.  I am human.

Tonight I was a mean parent.

Anna would not take a nap today although she was obviously tired.

I yelled out of frustration and anger and begged God to give me a break.  I couldn’t handle this.  While she cried and kicked and screamed, I felt like I could kick her or run away or scream in her face.  Then I stubbed my toe on a step stool. That was it.  I freaked out and started crying and yelling.  Anna was startled and instantly quieted down.  And I instantly felt terribly for what I had done.

Finally, while nursing one nipple and scratching/pulling/twisting/picking on the other nipple, Anna fell asleep.  Relief washed over me, and I felt in love again.

I learned about “sleep talking” the other day during a phone counseling session with one of my favorite people, Jan Hunt.  I will sleep talk to Anna tonight to apologize for being a mean mom.  I will tell her that I love her, that it is not her fault, and that she deserves better.  I will do better tomorrow.

Yesterday I was thinking about being a seed of change.  Today I am thinking about how a seed of change cannot achieve perfection, even if it wants to.  It can only strive for being its best self.  Nature is flawed and messy.  And I love that.

One of the reasons I quit Facebook a while back was that I became very disturbed by some of the things that people said on there.  I also felt scrutinized for what I said and suddenly felt afraid of revealing myself in such a public forum–to hundreds of people whom I hardly knew and certainly did not trust. I often felt judged and attacked for my unusual beliefs and choices, and that was hard for me.  I don’t do well with criticism.

When I took my break from Facebook, I had a lot of time to center myself and think about things.  During my hiatus, I realized that I didn’t want to lose connections to some of my Facebook friends.  I missed them. So I joined again and chose my friends carefully–this time, just the ones I trusted and felt good about having in my circle. There are still a few in there who would criticize my beliefs and choices, but I care enough about them to keep them…for now, at least.

Unfortunately, now Facebook shows me conversations that occur outside of my “friends” circle.  I can see other conversations, but I cannot comment on them.  I can also be a part of conversations on my friends’ pages that involve people who are not my friends.  This happened the other day, and I again found myself feeling overwhelmed and deeply disturbed by the hostility of some people.

And these particular people are people whom I know.  They are a part of my faith community.  They believe in and defend their meanness with pride. They encourage parents to belittle, punish, and name-call their kids.  In other words, they are bullies.  At the same time, they confess to have the same love and faith in their hearts as I have in mine. It is so confusing to me.  I do not understand them, and I don’t understand how those things can coexist within the same heart.

So I wrote my two cents in the comment thread and left it behind.  I told myself it was not my place to judge, thank goodness, and that I can only take care of what is in my own heart. Then I wrote this post and went to bed.

And then tonight I was a mean parent myself, so I can humbly say that none of us are perfect–and most certainly not me.  And I sort of felt like an idiot for being a spokesperson for kindness.  As if I am qualified for that.

We are all mean sometimes.

I used to feel like I had to be careful about what I wrote on this blog, but as of today I no longer care to do that.  I don’t have the energy for censorship.  Censorship requires such restraint and I am bursting at the seams.

From now on I am posting what pleases me, and nothing less.  It might please whomever reads it and it might not.  From now on, I care mainly about being true to myself and the people I share my house with. This is my blog and I love writing in it.  It lets me remember things that are important to me.  It lets me get thoughts out of my head so that I can sleep.

Goodnight 🙂