It's been one of those days. Two days actually. Yesterday Marlee was fussy and clingy and I couldn't pacify her. Today, Jencee threw a dozen fits.
I've typed and re-typed the sequence of events from today and all that happened with my ever fragile firstborn. The fits aren't important. What's important is that I didn't manage her or myself well.
Today, I roared at my kid. "Stoooooop Crying!!!" She was upset about wearing shoes. I'd explained myself over and over and tried to reason with her. "We are going to a birthday party and it's 50 degrees outside. You. must. wear. shoes." I ran out of patience and me yelling over her wailing wasn't working. So, I roared, "Stoooooop Crying!!!". Her fit was eventually over. We went on with our day.
Tonight, after I put the girls to bed I did my nightly routine of loading the dishwasher, picking up toys, checking email. I ran across this blog post and was hit in the gut. I cried. I asked God to forgive me. To grant me discipline in controlling my frustration. To help me be a better Mom. A better person.
I went to see if Jencee was still awake so I could apologize. She was on the floor outside her room waiting for permission to go potty. I brought her to my chair and sat her in my lap and cried. I said, "Mommy's sorry for yelling at you today." She touched a tear running down my face and asked what it was (sounds dramatic but that's really how it happened :)). I explained that it was tears and that I was sad. I told her that it made Mommy's heart hurt that I had yelled at her. I said in a quivering voice, "Mommy loves you very much." She stared at me a moment and then gave me the biggest tightest hug.
It was truly the sweetest thing.
The sweetest act of love that filled my cup to overflowing.
How does a three year old know compassion?