I need my village
out of focus children in mama and popa’s garden (notice the crimson light flare – fascinating) We’ve been spending a few evenings there every week and it makes such a difference to my days. We pick our salad from the ground and the vines, enjoy a beautiful woodfire oven or bbq dinner and I return home with bathed, pyjama-clad little ones asleep in the car.
I have never been more challenged as a parent than what I am now. I knew that solo-parenting would be hard but there are so many things I didn’t consider or expect. I never thought I would feel this vulnerable, I never thought Che would feel Daniel’s absence so deeply.
The past three weeks have been emotionally charged and I’m doing my best to guide the children into a new rhythm, albeit temporary – much easier said than done. This new normal is rocky and I’m witnessing long, passionate displays of sadness and anger – usually directed at me. It’s difficult to find that balance between discipline and comfort, to express my endless, wholehearted love but stick to my firm boundaries.
I’ve been encouraging Che to let go of his anger by running out in the garden instead of screaming at the top of his lungs. He says to me: “But mum, my anger can’t come out of my feet, it needs to come out of my mouth.” I admire his ability to express how and where he is feeling but tonight I realised that I need to make a few changes to ensure his anger isn’t provoked. I feel like I’ve reached a point where I need to find some mama-bear fire instead of getting caught up in my vulnerability.
Later tonight I’ll unplug the television (once Q&A is finished) and carry it into the garage – tough call but there’s no denying that it’s a catalyst for poor behaviour and unrealistic expectations. Over breakfast tomorrow I’ll sit next to Che and talk about our house and family rules – what’s acceptable and what’s not (it’s been too long since we last spoke about them). And later in the day I’ll enlist the help of my village because…I surrender – I need all the parenting support I can get.
How do you encourage your children to express their anger? Am I completely nutty getting rid of the TV? I have nine weeks (maybe more depending on the filming schedule) to go till Daniel returns. I am breathing – deeply.