The alarm goes off at 5am. You finally get the energy to drag yourself out of bed only to trip over the baby doll left on the floor by your 2-year old, which sends you into orbit and stubbing your toe on the dresser as you stumble by. While in the bathroom you drop your newly opened contact down the drain – never to be seen again. As you walk into the kitchen, which seems to be emitting an odor that should only be smelled in a swamp, you realize you forgot about the rotting bananas in the corner that your kids just had to have and totally will eat. You toss them into the trash barrel, just as you get a nice big whiff of the dirty diaper that was thrown away without a “smell guard” bag and that’s when you knew it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.
You decide to do a reset and have some much needed quiet time with God – and coffee. Using your stealth-like, Mom abilities and move around in the dark without making a sound, you suddenly hear little footsteps “tiptoeing” down the stairs. You become that Mom and set said child up in front of the television in order to finish your quiet time with God. I mean…after all, the child is interrupting your time with God. The time you need to be filled and focused for the day ahead. Don’t they know Mommy needs this?
Ahh…finally…peace and quiet.
Ten minutes later – more steps. Another precious blessing comes down the stairs – before 6am. SIX A.M. PEOPLE!
You shuffle this one off to the living room to watch some TV with the other bright-eyed and bushy-tailed blessing.
Back to your Bible reading.
Then they come in complaining that they need sustenance or they will surely die. Now, you know for a fact they will not die if they sustenance is withheld, but if you have any hope of finishing at least one chapter in your Bible reading today…food it is.
You make a quick breakfast and send them back to their cartoon and you can go back to your Bible reading – again.
By 7am all four kids are downstairs and in rare form with demands, whining and complaints already in full swing.
This is NOT how you envisioned your morning, is it?
Finally you get everyone settled with food and drinks, so you try one more time to complete your Bible reading for the day. A tug on your arm says your day is now going in a different direction.
You give in, because let’s face it – that’s easier than fighting them. You put your Bible away, take care of said child and begin your daily chores. You went to bed a little early last night, so you have some towels that need folded from the laundry. The laundry takes almost twice as long to fold as your 2-year old “helper” is unfolding almost as fast as you are folding. What’s the point?
Now you move to the dishwasher. As you empty the dishwasher, you hear running water from the hall bathroom. Upon opening the door, you are greeted with the cheeky grin of your 2-year old “washing” her hands while flipping water everywhere – including the floor. You quickly remover said child from the bathroom and grab the newly folded towels – ugh…you finally caught up on towels too – to soak up the water in the bathroom floor before it seeps onto the laminate flooring in the hallway.
Once the water is soaked up, you drag the water-soaked towels to the washing machine and start the extra load of laundry for the day. As if you didn’t have enough regular laundry in your already full daily routine!
As you were putting the towels in to wash, your 4-year old has colored a new mural in the hallway, because she thought the wall looked empty. You correct her behavior yet again, put her in time out and search for the Magic Erasers that will remove the crayon from the wall and you realize this will definitely be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.
Have you ever had one of those days? The day that seemingly every terrible, horrible thing possible happens before lunchtime and you seriously contemplate mandatory naptime for everyone? How do you recover? How do you survive?
It’s not easy to reset your attitude when everything around is falling apart. But it is possible!
1. Pray – Whenever life gets crazy and my temper starts to flair, I take a step back and pray. Even if it’s just a few seconds in the kitchen corner – I stop, take a deep breath and pray for the rest of the day ahead.
2. Turn on the vent – Sometimes a corner of the kitchen isn’t quiet enough. So I step into the bathroom, lock the door and turn on the vent. The hum of the vent drowns out the chaos and noise so I can refocus my heart, mind and attitude on Christ.
3. Family Bible Study – While we do a Bible lesson every day, some days require extra Bible time – usually on a specific topic. There are several wonderful Bible studies out there for children that will help redirect your attitudes and reset the day. Some of our favorites include Searching for Sanity, Heart of Humility, Armor of God Mini Unit Study from Under the Golden Apple Tree, Little Lads and Ladies of Virtue and How to Manage Your Mouth for Kids and Adults.
4. Turn off the TV – Turning off the additional stimuli makes a tremendous difference in our house. When the day gets crazy and the kids are wild, I turn off the television, tablets, Kindles and any other electronic device in our house. The kids are told to play with their toys and use their imaginations together. Soon I find that they have reset their attitudes and calmed down, as have I.
5. Turn on Music – We love music in our house, so when we need to reset our day – the music comes on. We play music they love to jump around to and sing. Strange as it sounds, even though they are jumping around and singing songs they somehow end up calmer after some singing time.
How do you reset your attitude and heart when you start to have a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day?