The No Yelling Promise

Mama’s Losin’ ItToday I am participating in Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.  One of the writing prompts for today is “A Promise”.

Monday evening, my two daughters played dress up with my clothes.  It would have been a very cute thing except that they had on my “good clothes” and they did NOT clean up their mess.  My girls are 10 and 8, so cleaning up what they mess up is not an unrealistic expectation. 

I asked them to clean up earlier in the evening but I did not check to be sure that they complied with my request.  When I came upstairs to go to bed, all of their dress up clothes-cough–(my work and dressy clothes) were spewed on top of the bed. I yelled their names, as I often do, and demanded that they clean up!  Since I used my crazy-mommy-yelly voice, they quickly complied and I exhaustedly climbed in the bed and immediately went to sleep.

The next morning, I noticed that several of my things (make up, travel toiletry bag, combs and brushes) were all over the bathroom floor.  With a tired exhalation, I picked those things up off of the floor and placed them on the top of the counter.   As I was getting ready, I opened the cabinet under the sink to find several totes, make up and you name it just THROWN inside.  In fact, when I opened the cabinet, things forcefully fell out!

To say that I was enraged at that very moment would be an understatement.  Kray-Kray-Krazy Katina was there in an instant.  I started snatching things out from under the cabinet and throwing them across the bathroom while yelling about how unfair it was for the girls to touch my things and then just mush them under the cabinet instead of putting them back. 

My husband was asleep but Kray-Kray Krazy made sure that he was no longer soundly sleeping.

The REALLY crazy thing is that he didn’t even get up and come into the bathroom to see what all the fuss was about.  Unfortunately, Kray-Kray is becoming the norm for me. 

I can feel Kray-Kray coming on and usually after she appears, I PROMISE myself, God,and the girls that she will not return; that I will stop yelling and not get so angry.

I woke the girls up furiously.  I loudly entered their rooms, clicked on the lights, and barked “GET UP”!  As soon as my youngest daughter’s eyes were open, I “grit teethed” told her that it was very disrespectful of her to use my things and just throw them back up under the cabinet.  She responded “sorry Mommy”.

I didn’t even respond to her apology.  Kray-Kray had heard sorry before so she was off to her next victim. When I “grit-teethed” gave my oldest daughter a piece of my mind about the whole non-cleaning-throwing-mommy’s-stuff incident, she BACK TALKED me!”Oh-no-she-didn’t?” 

So you know what happened.  Kray-Kray-Krazy Katina went berserk.  The rest of the morning was a blur. 

I cried while driving into work.

A good cry can really clear out your mind.  My tears helped me become a little more rational.  I began thinking:  “Ok, they used my stuff and did not put it back correctly.  Why did I get so upset?  Why do I find it so hard to keep my promise?”

A counselor friend of mine, shared the HALTS method with me. 

The HALTS method says do not get too: Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, or Scared. When we are any of these things, research says we are more vulnerable to feel unhappy and easily become irritated.

Ok, so my husband was leaving for an all week work trip later that day–anticipated Lonely(check).  I was ALREADY tired from trying to get everything done since I knew he was going out of town—Tired (check).  Working my day job, running my side-business, and having to do ALL the homework and carpooling by myself had me so worried that I was not going to be able to get it all done–Scared (check).  Just simply mad that I cannot afford to not work and just do my side business-Angry (check).  I hadn’t eaten anything yet–Hungry (check)!  WOW!

My yelling is an issue but it is not the REAL issue.  The REAL issue is that Mommy needs to: recommit to her quiet times, go to bed earlier,  let some housework go undone, repeat the same play list from a previous week for her fitness class from time to time, let blogging go, go and actually use her massage membership that she has not used since she purchased it.  Mommy needs to take care of herself so that she can take care of her family and other responsibilities.  Alas, the reason the flight attendants tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself before you place it on others.

Will taking care of myself mean that I will NEVER yell again?  Probably not, but if I can remember to address what I am really feeling, I may be able to keep Kray-Kray Krazy Katina at bay.   

Do you have any promises that being Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired or Scared are hindering you from keeping?

Ephesians 5:29-30 None of us hate our own bodies. We provide for them and take good care of them, just as Christ does for the church, because we are each part of his body.

Comments

  1. Terrific post, and I just internalized HALT! Thanks for the great advice!

  2. Thanks!!!!! I am still trying to internalize!!!!

  3. This is awesome Katina! So many women face the same issues and needed to hear they are not alone. As always, thank you for sharing and blessing us!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Thanks!! I really needed this today!!! I will try to use the HALT method with my family & myself. Awesome, altruistic & inspiring as usual!!!!!!

    Nichole

  5. I am sure I've had moments like this. So many times I'm ashamed to admit. I have promised myself and my children that I will not yell at them before school. It's so hard to have a good day if you spend your first moments of the day being yelled at by someone you love! I've slipped a couple of times, but I'm trying! And I've felt so badly those times I did it that I drove to school to apologize to them during the day. Have to remember HALT and good for you for trying too!

  6. My little girl is only one but already I am picturing episodes like this. :) xx

  7. Anonymous says:

    Honest, helpful and inspiring…as always! Thanks! I have shared this with a few of my personal contacts and on my facebok page

  8. I can completely understand what you went through, and this was such a helpful post! I've never read your blog before, and am so glad I found it tonight. You are a reminder of why this community of moms is so helpful! Thanks for sharing :-)

  9. I'm laughing at your “Kray-Kray Krazy” nickname :)
    It's great that you recognized the real reasons behind your reactions. I'm glad you shared the HALTS method in this post. Sometimes I snap too and scream at the kids. I bet there are underlying HALTS issues when that happens. Now I know what to look out for. Thanks!

  10. Thank you!! Yes we are all in this together!! It takes a village…,

  11. Trying really hard!!!!! Thanks for commenting!

  12. Share away!!!! Thanks for commenting!

  13. Yes!!!! We are all in this together and none of us have it all figured out!!!!

  14. Feel free to use Kray-Kray anytime!!! (he! He!) Hopefully you will be HALTSING so you won't need it!!!!! Thanks for commenting!

  15. Ah yes…….. I will be praying for you!!! Girls are something else!! B

  16. Yay!!!! Thanks for commenting!!!!!

  17. Great post, thanks so much for the HALTS share. Burned that into my memory asap.

    I've been a bit 'yelly' myself, almost like no one hears me or takes me seriously unless I'm about to explode. Must be a mom thing. Definitely trying to work on that myself.

    Visiting from Mama Kat's.

  18. Sounds like you were describing me….! (blush) Sometimes I yell about such stupid things, things I swore I never would get upset about. But like you, this morning, I realized that I need to go to bed earlier and figure some other things out. Kids are kids, right? And what I don't want happening is that I yell so often that they stop listening, ya know? Great post, stopping by from Mama Kat's, but I'll be back!

  19. Oh what a fantastic post that so mirrored some of my worst mommy days that I regret having right after the crazy side of me rears its ugly head. I couldn't help but laugh about the Kray-Kray Krazy…because it does make you feel like you have two personalities. The HALT method just be what I have needed to help fight the negative side of myself. So glad I stopped by from Mama Kat's! I'll certainly be back!

  20. Jackie Simpson says:

    I love the HALT method so true!! Sweet friend, please feel free to lean on me as I have big ears for listening,long arms for hugging and a 2nd home for the girls when you need a break!

  21. This is a amazing website, would you be interested in doing an interview concerning just how you produced it? If so e-mail myself!

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