Thursday, January 8, 2009


After having been out of routine for the last four weeks now... I am itching and anxious to get back into the swing of things. However, I am realizing that the swing of things is not so swinging. I am finding myself constantly fighting a broiling anger underneath much of my parenting. Routines make life more peaceful, but only if the routines themselves are peaceful routines. I think I have established some very poor routines with my kids, my husband, myself. For example, I will shout an instruction to S from another room, expecting him to hear me and do what I have just asked him to do - but knowing that he won't do it - so am I really expecting anything but nothing? So then I leave the room I'm in, speak his name harshly and say something to the effect of "what did I just ask you to do?" To which he quite honestly replies, "I don't know." To which I reply angrily, "you need to listen for my voice." Really? Is this really the way I'm parenting? Do I really expect my children to spend their whole days only half engaged in everything they do so that, just in case Mom chooses to speak, they will be listening to me? And then the routine of frustration and arguing continues... I ask half-heartedly, not expecting to be obeyed. They listen half-heartedly, knowing I'll ask again, etc. And before I even know how we got there, we are at odds with one another. We have become adversaries rather than companions. And so, as I think about establishing routines again after an unstructured period of time, I am trying to re-evaluate all of our relational routines and focus on them within the context of practical routines. At this point, I think it will look like a lot of staying home, playing outside. Trying to simplify the practical routines so that they don't distract me from the real point... loving my kids, coming alongside them to encourage their growth in the character of Christ and the Spirit of grace. Help...

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