Trying Not to Take Stress Out on the Kids

Two weeks in and I’ve already failed one of my summer goals. I made it my intention to have fun with the kids and be less stressed with them, but this morning, I was a ball of tension as we raced off late to summer camp because I had to deal with some work stuff before I left for the morning. Instead of having a relaxed entry to summer camp for them, one where we were jovial, and arrived early enough to calm nerves and build confidence in a shy child, we rushed, we hurried, we were tense because of me, and I dropped them off with a thud instead of a gentle launch.

It was only one morning, and I’ll try to do better, I told myself, but really, I know I missed an opportunity. It’s not my kids’ fault that I had something to deal with this morning, yet the stress worked its way down to them. I tried to be calm, letting my son tell nonsensical jokes on the drive over, when I really wanted quiet. I laughed, somewhat insincerely. The lie I tell myself is that things will calm down once x happens. X is always changing, never really arriving. Once I get the house packed up for our move, all will be calm. Once I get home from a trip, it will be easier. But it’s never easier because the solution isn’t in the milestone. I need to figure out a way to better balance my life, and to protect my kids from things that have nothing to do with them. I wish I could better compartmentalize things, but I’m not so good at that. Plus, it’s hard when one works from home or when Twitter is always going, to close the office door at 5 p.m.

The summer is far from over, so I will strive to improve and have fun with the kids. Figuring out how to diminish the stress is the hard part. I’m open to suggestions.

Clip art licensed from the Clip Art Gallery on

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  1. June 25, 2012
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