It dawned on me this morning that one HUGE change in my life lately has been I don't second guess my parenting anymore. I used to STRESS daily about -
...did I just yell too loudly at my kid?
...Did what I just said come out too mean?
...Was I being too strict over that decision?
...Will he be scarred for life because I told him no?
...Should I have been more lenient about that rule but stricter about that rule?
Looking back, it was the alcohol that did that. It did that to me about a lot of things...
...Did I handle that task at work like I should have?
...Am I a good enough friend to that person?
...Does Rick still love me the way he used to?
...I'm a bad person for drinking yet again last night.
...Why couldn't I stop at 2 drinks like I planned on doing?
OVER and OVER and OVER again. And again.
I mean seriously, alcohol dominated my internal dialogue to the poing of self destruction. The guilt and worry that surrounded me everyday was overwhelming to say the least. Like, it wasn't hard enough to be a good parent and a good employee and and a good wife and a good friend but then I added to it the stress of not being able to control my drinking. WHY couldn't I just stop drinking like a crazy lady?
So, this morning I realized that yes, I have yelled at my kids in the past 5 months. And yes, there have been a handful of times that "I snapped and blurted something out to my kids that I instantly regretted." But you know what? I talked about it right away with my kids, apologized, and openly communicated my frustration and why I think it happened. And they were understanding. And they saw their mom snap for a second but keep the line of communication open and work on the situation. And I didn't go to bed that night crying and freaking out that I harmed my kids. Because I realize and they realized that I am human, they are human, we're family and we love each other unconditionally.
There's so much worse in life than a mom yelling, "No, I already told you 7 times that you cannot ride your bike in the rain after you just got over the flu!" They'll be fine. I'm doing the best I can. And I am not riddled with guilt anymore.