Monday, April 18, 2016

It All Started with Squishy Carpet

Maybe I shouldn't have gotten up so early.

Maybe I shouldn't have walked down the stairs with my iPad and water bottle, ready to ride the bike before the kids got up. (I should clarify that--before the little kids got up. Lily had been at the computer since 5 am working on homework.) But I did.

And that's when I smelled it. Stinky sewer smell. Did someone forget to flush the toilet down here?

And that's when I felt it. Squishy saturated bathroom rug. What was going on?

And that's when I walked into the bedroom. Stinky sewer smell and squishy saturated rug followed me.

We flooded. Sigh.

Brad and I moved all the bedroom furniture and lifted the carpet before the kids were up, but this didn't put Mom in the best of moods on a beautiful Monday morning. We read scriptures and said prayers, and the kids scattered to practice or get dressed or finish up homework. I asked one of the kids (who shall remain anonymous) if I could check their homework assignments on the school's portal from the week before. I was supposed to do it Friday, but I was so busy all weekend that Monday morning was the first moment I'd had to think about it.

And that's when I saw it. Missing assignments and a few poor grades. Was I seeing what I thought I was seeing?

And that's when I lost it.

I would like to think that if I hadn't been greeted by a soggy basement that my response to this news would have been a little better, but if I'm being honest . . . probably not.

One of the things I hate most about myself is that I yell sometimes. I hate it. When I'm caught up in the moment, my brain keeps sending signals like, "Yelling is not the best way to handle this!" or "Remember Love and Logic parenting? It's not this!" or "Your kids deserve better than this!" or just simply "STOP!"

Experts say you repeat as a parent what you saw as a child, but that certainly is not the case with me. I don't remember my mom ever yelling at me. I mean, sometimes she'd raise her voice or get frustrated, but I don't remember her ever YELLING yelling at me. And my dad? I remember arguing with him and him being stern with me, but I only remember him really yelling at me once. So I don't even have the convenient excuse of blaming my parents.

It's all me.

I promise myself all the time that this will the last time and I'm never going to lose my cool again. And then I do.

I hate it. They hate it. We all hate it.

The soggy basement will dry and the carpet pad will be replaced and the basement will stop smelling like a swamp. It will all get fixed.

I wish I could fix that easily.

Any great suggestions on how to change? 


  1. Crazy you should post this today. I've been reading books off and on for years to be the mom I want to be, but just today, putting my toddler down for his nap I was thinking about how my parents never yelled. Never got so frustrated...where did I come by this? I'll be following the comments in hopes someone has a magic fix.

  2. I have no advice for you ... but I totally understand. I have the same problem.

  3. I think you'll get a lot of empathy and lots of virtual hugs. I don't have any advice. My lovely mother was a yeller - hard to imagine but she was. We grew up just fine and love her to bits.

  4. An apology goes a long way with kids, I've noticed. (Thankfully for me!)

    Like all moms, I tried to keep my temper, but all bets were off when I was paying the bills. I HATE that job. So what I used to do when my kids lived at home was warn them off. I would just tell them to keep their distance and "not get by me" when I was doing the bills. In their own best interest, they complied.


    PS. Really sorry about your back-up fiasco. Can't stand that kind of stuff. Hope you get it resolved soon!