Let me tell you a little story about blame.
This literally unfolded in my house this morning.
And then I got smacked in the face by this video from the lovely Brene Brown that made me realize just how I had ruined my own morning.
My son is a picky eater. This means lots of wasted food, lots of mealtime stress and lots of well intentioned thinking and work on my part to make sure that he is consuming enough of the “right things” so that I am confident his body is getting what it needs.
So I bought these cheese danish things from the store and I was all jazzed thinking for sure this would work. He would love it, and get a bit of protein from this tidbit and some of my stress would abate.
Or, you know, NOT.
He didn’t want it. He took one little tiny nibble from the corner and declared it “yucky”.
I was livid. It literally took me half a second to lose my mind.
Hi, my name is Stephanie and I’m a blamer.
Check out this video, and then read the rest of the story.
At this point I am looking at things quite a bit differently.
What this meant to me was that my expectations had set me up for a fall. Instead of accepting that he just is an incredibly discerning eater and understanding that there was a good possibility that even this little treat would not pass his requirements, I had decided that I was an awesome parent and had done the work to find this little culinary connoisseur something that would please him. I had hung my worth on his choices.
This ruined our morning. I was convinced it was his fault.
Lovely, right? Blaming a nine year old for just being himself.
Then I listened to Brene and realized that this was MESSED UP.
Yes, I was frustrated, and that is ok. But, instead of sharing my feelings and working through it with him, I jumped immediately into a diatribe about how his picky eating makes me crazy. I swear it lasted ten minutes at least. Clearly, this got us nowhere. By the time he left, we were further apart than ever, he was mad, I was mad and this was how we went our separate ways.
I will be buying donuts to say I’m sorry.
This is what creates connection. Vulnerability, accountability and sharing our feelings with one another.
Not blame, or toxicity or anger. Love, empathy and sharing.
This is what conscious parenting is about. Learning to see ourselves, and take responsibility for the darkness that parenting (and life, quite frankly( shows us is inside of ourselves. And then accepting it, owning it, and integrating this knowledge into our lives.
Tell me your stories mamas, if you are brave enough to be vulnerable.
Welcome to the blame club. We are all in this together.