Friday, February 25, 2011

It's not all bad

I had a rough day yesterday.  Nothing exceptional, just basic parent rough day stuff - Miles's diaper leaked on me first thing in the morning; Oscar had a tantrum on school grounds (including falling on the ground); the boys ran from me in the school and I had to chase them (with Benji strapped to me in the Ergo); I forgot Oscar's school bag and lunch and had to go home and bring them back; Miles refused to nap; Oscar picking on Miles; Miles picking on Benji; lots of whining all around (from the picking, of course); Miles clinging to my legs and begging to be held while I fixed dinner; Oscar repeatedly demanding snacks just before dinner when he knows they are not allowed, and inciting Miles to to the same; the boys refusing to go to bed; changing a total of six poopy diapers in one day.

I don't find any of those things particularly irritating, but all together in one day they are just short of maddening.  And, really, if it hadn't been for the school antics the day would have been fine.  Typical, even.  But I found it hard to come back from that morning.

So, last night I was reading a post by Becky where she shared some of the small things in life that she's enjoying right now, and asked readers to do the same.  At first I thought, "I got nothing.  This day destroyed me." And then, I decided to think about it, and I did have stuff that made me pleased - my too tight jeans no longer being too tight; quiet mornings; my new book light; my dark chocolate stash in my freezer.  These things make me happy even if I'm having a hard day.

It actually reminded me of something my mom once told me, several years ago.  It is one of the best pieces of life advice I have ever received.  She said to me, "When people wake  up in the morning, they can decide if they want be happy or if they want to be miserable.  I choose to be happy."

This was a real eyeopener for me, because for some reason, I'd never realized that my own happiness was so much in my control.  I always felt like my happiness, or lack thereof, was a result of things that were going on around me and happening to me.  I would let the sum of small annoyances ruin my day.  Why would I do that?  Why did I do that yesterday?

Today, I choose to be happy.


Casey said...

What a great positive attitude to turn an otherwise shitty day around. I need to work on that. Oh, and I totally get the running away at school, my kids pull that shit ALL THE TIME so now they are not allowed to walk to or from their classrooms without my tight grip on their chubby little hands. Happy Friday.

Susanica said...

So true Jenni! And if it makes you feel any better, I bet Benji loved going 100 mph with you in that Ergo chasing the boys. He's been in a rather cranky mood lately which can't have helped. Oh, and I hope it makes you happy to know that your circle of friends from all walks of your life think you are wonderful! Have a great day Jenni. -M

Sprite's Keeper said...

I cleaned my house last night and now have no housework to account for this weekend (as long as the toys stay in Sprite's room). I'm VERY happy. :-)

Hannah Hammonds said...

I think this way too. Life is good, but it can be hard to think that way when little things annoy you all day! Happy day today!

Becky said...

Boy that sounds like a doozey of a day. I agree that something going wrong with school can make me feel like the rest of the day is clouded over, somehow. I have to remind myself, "Nothing bad is happening."

Thank you for the shout out, girlfriend, and congratulations on your no-longer tight jeans!

Amanda said...

Congrats on the jeans! That's something I'm working on. I still sometimes feel that my happiness or lack thereof is related to things that are going on around me, but I guess my attitude is also a work in progress!

Amy said...

Jenni, you seem--based on this and other posts I've read--really good at taking stock of your attitude and adjusting it when needed. That's so hard for me to do at times!

And even though it isn't cataclysmic or anything, kid stuff can truly make one batty. It's good to be reminded that life is, in fact, pretty darn good.

And you go girl with the jeans!! That's the best feeling.

Aimee said...

It's some of my favorite advice. My younger son is quite melodramatic (I NEVER have any fun! This is going to be a HORRIBLE day!), and I tell him quite often, to Choose Happiness.

Of course, we all have those days, but if you can wake up the next day, shake it off, and choose to be happy then? You've got it under control. :)

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