I could hear her little girl imagination from the living room where I sat, taking five minutes to relax after cleaning what felt like the whole house.
The sound of her faint whispers traveled down the hallway, her tiny voice changing as she created the characters, playing out the scene in front of her.
I lay back on the couch and sighed, enjoying the quiet for a moment and letting my eyes close.
It was then that I heard the shrill, stern tone coming from my daughter as she reprimanded her toys, her voice escalating as she gave them a good talking to.
She scolded them for not listening, counted to three, and said NO! And off they went to time out.
Was that what I sounded like?
My heart broke.
I remember before I had a child promising myself I would be a patient parent. I would come from a place of calm, try to understand my child’s frustrations, explain things instead of simply saying, “because I said so,” and for the most part I have, but there are days…
Those are the days I want to stick my head under a pillow and scream. The days I’m certain I’m messing everything up.
The days I want to drive away to a sunny location and drink away my problems while I look at a pool boy named Juan.
I expected this parenting thing to go a hell of a lot smoother, with less bumps, questioning, and tears and I had no idea one day I would hear myself reflected in my child’s play.
It’s opened my eyes to the type of parent I want to be remembered for and also helped remind me that it’s ok that I’m not perfect.
It’s helped me to see where I might be able to improve and how I might be portrayed by my daughter.
It’s also reminded me that I’m human.
I’ve never done this before.
Parenting isn’t easy, there are days where it feels like I am doing everything wrong and we will never see bedtime, but then there are the days that I could kiss her whole face, spend the days tossing her in the air and twirling her in circles.
It’s a rollercoaster of patience.
And I refuse to be too hard on myself.
This is hard work.
And I’m doing my best.