A lesson in patience

I am not a patient person. I do not pretend to be.

I am raising two independant and also not very patient children. To my own demise there are moments in which that is a recipe for disaster.

This morning felt like one of those moments.

My son informed me last night before bed that he was going to be making breakfast sandwiches for himself and his sister in the morning. He needed to be woken up early so he could do that for her before she needed to leave (she goes to school 90 minutes before he does).

So I made sure he was up and began putting away the clean dishes from last night trying to stay out of the way. Watching the mess and general slowness that comes with still learning how to cook had me counting to ten and taking as many deep breaths as I could without being audible. While he was tossing eggs around she was preparing her lunch in the most unconventional way I think I’ve ever seen and there was peanut butter EVERYWHERE.

Still trying not to say a word, scream, or otherwise take over because I want them to be able to do these things on their own (even at the expense of my kitchen) I stayed out of the way and only offered assistance when it was implicitly asked for.

Two breakfast sandwiches were consumed, lunches were packed, and after 10 minutes all peanut butter, crumbs, and egg remnants had been removed from the counters. I know it sounds like such a dumb, small thing. It is, and I know this. But its another one of those times in parenthood that you don’t think about until you’re living it.

I’ve worked with teens that didn’t know how to cook even scrambled eggs or a grilled cheese. Didn’t know how to do their own laundry, or had never cleaned the bathroom. I want to be sure that my kids are not those kids. At this point they can cook small things with minimal supervision, they know how to start the washer and dryer (even though that is one thing I am not ready to pass the torch on), and they alternate who cleans the bathroom every other week. The bathroom has been a fantastic lesson in aim for my son so I count it as a win.

While they are both picking up skills that I hope they take with them when they no longer live under our roof, it comes at the expense of my patience and sanity. I do have some OCD tendencies that seem to be more prevalent as I get older, and there are moments where it is so much faster if I just do it myself. But then they don’t learn. Then they expect me to always do it for them.

I love to cook for my kids, I enjoy doing thing for them (can you guess my love language?) but there is a fine line between love and enabling behavior. So here we are. A lesson in patience before the coffee is ready on a Monday morning. We live dangerously around here, but I know in the long run it will be worth it.

Is there anything that you are doing while raising your kids that sometimes makes you crazy?? I’d love to hear about it if you’re willing to share.

SG

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