Patience and grace.

I told my husband last week how if the world just had a little more patience and grace we’d all be a lot better off. This is rich coming from me, of course, since neither of these seem to be my virtues these days. I constantly hit these points in my day where I am just WORN OUT.

I’m drained. And I just want somebody to say or do something positive. To stop fighting. To give me a break. To say something encouraging to someone - anyone.

And I hate that when I’m stressed and hurting, my daughter feels the force of it too. So often I worry that my own frustrations and discontentedness contribute to or perpetuate the very same feelings in her.  

I want her to feel loved 100% of the time. I want to be the kind of mom who takes everything in stride and offers her kids a constant source of light and positivity. I just don’t personally know how to succeed at that.

But instead, I let myself get down-trodden by my struggles to maintain an orderly house, stay on top of meal preparations, make sure my family feels full (in all aspects of the word), and simultaneously ensure that I am able to do the things I need to do in order to personally uphold my own sanity and well-being. I lose my cool. I yell. I brood. And I find myself losing focus on the wonderful life I have right now, instead focusing on the life I wish I had or the places I’d rather be. I lose my patience. And I lose my grace.

And that’s why I’m making those three little words my daily mantra.

Patience and grace.

When your husband tells you he thinks it would be nice for you to start doing yoga together in the mornings, but you wake up the next day to find that apparently what he meant was that YOU should be the one to set that up and find a routine and whatnot…

Patience and grace.

When you’re trying to lay your toddler baby girl down for bed and she is literally stone-cold-asleep, so you roll over to climb out of bed and she magically wakes up just to whine at you for another 15 minutes…

Patience and grace.

When you spend an entire day reorganizing your house and cleaning up all your crap just to make the darn place live-able, and in no more than three hours it is completely destroyed, yet again…

Patience and grace.

When you and your baby girl just drove nearly a half hour over the hill to rendezvous with a friend and go for a much needed run, and you realize you left the stroller at home… (btw I typed those three little dots soooooooo sardonically slow…)

Patience and grace.

When the one thing you want most in the entire world is for someone to offer their help without you having to ask, but it doesn’t happen and now you’re literally two seconds away from hardcore losing your composure…

Patience and grace.

When you are super pissed off because you’ve forgotten what you were pissed off about, but you don’t know how to stop being pissed off…

Patience and grace.

Patience: Because everybody is just different. We all have a different way of doing things and a different perspective on the world in which we live. No single one of us is going to respond to given situation in the exact same way, and it’s not fair for us to expect that of others. We aren’t even going to respond with the same speed or sense of urgency. We can’t hold others to the same set of moral guidelines that we hold for ourselves, because we each prioritize our values differently. It’s not good. It’s not bad. It just is.

Grace: Because every single person in the universe makes mistakes - every hour, of every day, of our lives. And life is way too short to let ourselves get worked up about petty crap. I’m a firm believer in giving somebody the benefit of the doubt until they PROVE otherwise. Most mentally stable people do not spend their days actively thinking up ways to hurt or frustrate us. We’ve just all got a lot going on in our lives, and that’s not going to change any time soon (cue the silent weeping...). I don’t know the kinds of struggles someone may be dealing with at any given moment, and consequently, I have no idea what motivates their actions or lack thereof. But I can tell you this, taking it personally is a waste of time and a waste of energy.  We all mess up. We all say things we don’t mean. We all need grace.

But here’s another thought. We need patience and grace for ourselves too. I set such huge expectations for myself that I forget that when I don’t meet those expectations it’s not because I am a failure or I suck at life. It’s because I am at a different point of time in the metamorphosis of life than I’d like to be. But I’m still part of that wild, beautiful process all the same. So, I need patience to let myself struggle along because one day I will get there (wherever there is) and grace to realize that when I do make mistakes and lose my stuff, it’s okay. It’s just a part of life, and it’s still beautiful.

So, next time it’s 11 o’clock at night and I’m trying to knead potato roll dough but it’s not cooperating and flour is literally flying in all directions, and puffing its way across my mom’s clean tile floors, and I really just want to throw the whole batch at the wall and scream curse words (but the kind of scream that’s so torrential you wouldn’t actually be able to tell that there were curse words)…

Patience and grace…

...and wine.