October 27, 2006

What's the hurry?

I am an impatient person with a bit of a temper. My dad has loads of cute stories from my childhood demonstrating this very trait. Many of them involve stomping of feet and slamming doors - at the age of 2. While this isn't an excuse, it has always made me feel a little better that at least I was BORN that way.

I worried often during my pregnancy about this. I worried that I would have a colicky baby who would drive me to the point of shaking him. I worried that I would get frustrated being slowed down while trying to breeze through Target. I worried that my temper on the road would get me in trouble with a teeny baby in the back witnessing it. The list goes on with the extent of my worries of the effect a baby would have on my life. Damned straight, a Baby cramps your Impatient Style.

So far so good. Sure, there have been times when the No Napping has pushed me to The Edge and I've had to put Arun in his crib and close the door and go downstairs for an old fashioned remedy of Chocolate and Tears. I've let go of not being able to run errands endlessly and now follow a Rule of Three (shout out to Goofy Girl for that tip) - this helps limit ME so that I don't wear Arun out. I still have to fight my anger on the highway, but seeing Arun in the rearview mirror is ample incentive to keep my cakehole shut and my middle finger withdrawn.

Yesterday, I had an incident that would have most certainly pushed the Old Me sans Child over The Edge. I went to pick up X at the airport and the plan was we would just drive up to the terminal and he would hop into the car, per usual. We've done this loads and loads of times over the years.

As you've probably already guessed, his flight was 2 hours late.

It was pretty bad - I hadn't had my morning coffee, I had no makeup on and Arun was in his pajamas with socks on, but no shoes. I had brought few toys and no healthy snacks. I also had a lunch planned for that day which would need to be canceled. I am so utterly spoiled by Southwest, I had completely NOT prepared for the rarity that they would be so late. So, it was a little stressful keeping Arun Contained AND Entertained. The Old Me would have been furious and then would have snipped and snapped at X when he arrived (as if it was HIS fault). The irony is that the Old Me would have treated herself to a coffee and a gossip rag and thus in reality, would have spent the time RELAXING. The New Me was pretty tired and a little stressed (although not too badly, in truth). Indeed, the situation with Arun hit a fever pitch where I let him have my WALLET so he could pull ALL the contents out, including lint, and scatter them on the floor (it worked!) X finally arrived and all was well. No Snipping and Snapping, either.

Later when I thought about the morning and pondered the differences between the Old Me and the New Me, I realized I have changed. Might I have GROWN?


And this is why I love my Great Aunt P so. She was an only child and was raised by her grandparents, aunt and parents - completely doted upon, she was. Then she married my Great Uncle B, who in turn completely took care of her as well. When Great Uncle B died over 6 years ago, we were very worried about how she would get along. Damn. She totally rose to the challenege, folks. Here she was at 79, learning how to do things for herself that she had never done before. So, Great Aunt P is a beautiful lesson in that a person CAN grow, evolve and become better.

I still have a long road to hoe to go with my impatience, but she gives me hope.

And the gemstone eyes don't hurt, either.


Jen said...

I am told that when I was a child and did not like whatever was going on, I would hold my breath until I passed out. High strung a little? Still am. One of the reasons I fear for my sanity if I have a kid. So good to read your story.

Quizman said...

Totally relate to you. (I am a dad of a 16 month old). A friend gave this book to my wife and me. Very helpful stuff indeed. (And not religious at all. It is as much about awareness/meditative behavior than anything else.)

FFF said...

It is much easier to be patient when you have such a cute baby, that's for sure. What is the Rule of Three that Goofy Girl suggested?

I struggle with patience too, but luckily, when I'm at my wits end, my husband is calm and can talk over. When he's out of patience, usually I'm in a more serene mood and can handle things. But he loses his patience more often than I do. So when I snap, it's not often, but it suddenly becomes clear that when mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! :)

Cagey said...

The best part of of having a child is gaining a new perspective that includes the Big Picture. I am less likely to get so mad about little things because I can that those things are indeed, LITTLE. :-)

Thanks for the book link - I will be checking that out. It looks like good stuff.

The Rule of Three is "Thou shalt not go to more than 3 places within a particular time period." For example, in the morning before afternoon nap, I won't go to more than 3 places in that particular outing. If we still need to run around after the afternoon nap, I again limit our outings to 3 places. This includes fun stuff like the park! It helps keep him from getting too tired, too bored, or too stimulated - as the case may be depending on the place. I SWEAR by this rule. Every single time I break it, sure enough, he is Cranky and Crabby by the time we are headed home. Keep in mind that sometimes a big event might count as 2 places or even ALL 3 - for example, the zoo. hee hee

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

I can keep my temper with everyone except my parents. They really have good handle on my buttons and a singular ability to push them.

I will say that I much prefer the quick-frustration model, esp. since I've learned to release the anger/annoyance/irritation into the aether and move on already. My sister and father, otoh, NEVER get angry...but when they do, gods help you, it's a cold anger that moulders for hours and hours.

Modern Day Hermit said...

My Dad and sister are like Monkey's, they don't get pissed often, but when they do...whew, you better watch out.

I used to be super-duper impatient, but strangely, having a dog helped cure me of that. I'm glad I got a dog before I had a kid, that's for sure, as strange as that may sound.

If I want to have a fit, having Alex with me surely assist me to reach cool-down mode, that's for sure. Although my rantings while driving still need some assistance! I'm hoping his first sentance isn't, "Yeah right dickwad, you think you're getting in after cutting me off earlier, go suck a big one, you must be fucknutty."

Let's hope.

Blondie said...

That sounds painful. I am glad you survived!