So how many of you are wondering how I’m doing with my new habits? I realized today that most of them really have become habits! Not to say I don’t struggle with them still, but it’s not the same as before.
I have been waking up at 6 AM every morning (except 2) for over a month now. It really does make the mornings so much easier. I still have to send kids (mainly Lucas) back to bed until 7, but I’m not as grumpy about it, so I handle it better if/when he throws a fit. I’ve started to use that time to read my Bible Study and catch up on the computer (this is one I really should stop. I need to use it for laundry or something more productive.) Today I hit the snooze bar, Lucas woke up needing to go potty so I turned off the alarm and got up, only to crash back in bed and not wake up until 7:30 (because N got up with the kids). I felt awful and I do not want that to happen again. It’s one thing when N plans to get up with the kids and let me sleep. It’s another if I just don’t get up.
Today is 30 days since I took on the Orange Rhino Challenge. I can’t say I’ve gone the entire 30 days without yelling, but I can say that the amount of yelling I’ve done has gone significantly down. Of course, I’m writing this only 2 hours after a huge blow up on my part. But I’m not beating myself up over it. Because rather than send everyone to bed feeling miserable, I chose to hit the “reset” button. I stopped, explained to the kids that this was not working for any of us and that we were going to start over. I had Lucas go back to the bathroom and pretend he’d just finished brushing his teeth. I went to my room to take some deep breaths and put a (fake) smile on my face (I believe I said to myself Fake it ’till you make it!). Then I came out and we tried again. This time with no tears, no yelling, and a lot of hugs and kisses. So even though I messed up and yelled, I fixed it to the best of my ability. And that’s a huge improvement.
Now comes the hard part. I took some time this evening trying to figure out why I blew up when I haven’t in so long. And it dawned on me that yesterday was the first day in a week and a half that N has been home with us all day. And while I’ve taken on the challenge of yelling less, he has not. And there has been a lot more whining and poor behavior as a result (I think). I had been so amazed that the whole time we were at my mom’s we only had a handful of tantrums. Normally I feel like all I’m doing is damage control. But not this time. It was much more enjoyable and I am now thinking it is because I’ve been working so hard to stop yelling, which has made the kids more agreeable. Now that they are back to being yelled at, they are acting out again and Lucas is going straight to whining (N’s biggest pet peeve). It gets him a reaction and the attention he is seeking (his dad’s). I know N feels bad when he reacts with yelling, but I don’t know how to help him change. All I know how to do is work on me. So I’ll continue to do that and maybe, just maybe, some of it will rub off on N. *fingers crossed*
I seem to have hit a wall. I’m stuck at week 4 and can’t get past it. I did it successfully 3 times (not in a row) and tried week 5, but I just couldn’t do it. So I went back to week 4 and have had trouble with it as well. It makes it difficult to want to keep trying. I know in my head that even if I don’t get past week 4 I’ve still done SO much more than anyone (including me) ever expected me to, so I should be proud. And I am. But I’m also disappointed because I want to do more. I grumbled the other day to my “CHD Athletes” FB group and several people were saying “Walking is better than running” and trying to be encouraging, but I pointed out that running isn’t about exercise for me. It’s about pushing past the limits I always had before. Proving to myself how much my heart and health have improved over the last few years. Showing the world and the doctors that I didn’t have to feel worse before I could have a transplant and finally feel better. Setting an example for my kids that you can do more than you ever imagined if you just try.
N has been very supportive and has tried to give me encouragement. In some ways it helps, but it’s still so very frustrating. He says that he hit a wall about the same week I have and that he backed up a few weeks and started again. The next time he hit that week it was no problem. Perhaps that is what I will try. While reminding myself that anything is better than nothing and I’m still beating all the odds.
This is one I’m still struggling with. What I know I need to do, but haven’t yet, is to stay off the computer between 7 AM and 8 PM. But for some insane reason I feel like I might miss something if I don’t check it every 10 minutes. 😦 I truly think it is an addiction and I need to stop. I get sucked in and then don’t play with my kids the way I should. I validate myself by saying “But they’re playing so well together.” That doesn’t mean they wouldn’t love to have me playing too. As a matter of fact, they ask me to. And I say “Just a minute.” Those minutes go on until they stop asking. 😦 Not the way I want to parent at all. So now that I’ve gotten better at forming my other habits, I need to work on breaking the computer habit. Perhaps I need to start a challenge for that? Yes. That’s exactly what I need to do. And I’m stating it here publicly. I will also announce it on FB so if someone needs an immediate response from me they will know to call or text. Because my kids are way more important than the next quote someone shares on their wall (even if they do make a good point, like the one below).