I yelled at my baby girl today. And it made her cry. And I felt like a complete heel afterwards. I know that it's not something that she will remember, but I also know that it's not something that I will quickly forget.
Yes, I know logically, that we all yell at our kids. Sometimes it's to get their attention, sometimes it's to stop them from doing something stupid (or dangerous), and sometimes it's because they did something stupid (or dangerous). And other times it's just out of frustration, pure and simple.
Don't misunderstand me, I've raised my voice to Little P numerous times, usually because of one of the things mentioned above, but till this day, I had never, never, actually yelled at her. And it really wasn't her fault or anything she did. It was just a 'perfect storm' of things that built up and I, well, snapped.
It wasn't her fault that I was stuck in heinous traffic, or that I was surrounded by complete moron's who had less driving ability than Sheldon Cooper. It most certainly wasn't her fault that I was almost doubling over in pain thanks to Mother Nature's wonderful monthly visitor, and it kind of wasn't her fault I was tired (although the hour and change that I was awake with her in the middle of the night last night certainly didn't help). And normally her asking me the same question over and over (and over and over) again wouldn't have bugged me that much. But you put all of them together and you get a recipe for Mount Vesuvius - and that's what happened. I exploded.
And I made Little P cry.
If it had of been one of the 'I'm not sure why you just yelled at me, but I'm gonna cry anyway' kind of cry, I could have been okay with that, because those are the ones that you can quickly turn around into laughing if you know the right things to say or do. No, this was a 'the world is exploding' kind of cry, with the great big gap between sobs as she's trying to catch her breath.
If I had of been able to pull over and just give her a big cuddle and let her cry it out, I would have, but we were on the highway, still a good 15 minutes from home and there wasn't much I could do.
So, I did what any self-respecting Mother who is trying to stop her little one from crying would do. I put on her favorite song and listened to it, on repeat, all the way home.
By the time we were listening to it for the third time, she was down to just the sniffles and 'singing' along. By the time we got home, she was all smiles and talking about the things that 2 year olds talk about.
See, all but forgotten. At least on her end it was.
I may have given her bigger and longer cuddles that night, and maybe, just maybe, I read her favorite story more than once (try 10 ten times). And I may have let her sit on my lap just rocking and talking till she was ready to go to sleep. And maybe, just maybe, I might have stayed in her room watching her sleep for a little while. And that's okay.
There will come a day in the not so distant future when her and I will butt heads. And we will yell at each other. There will probably be name calling and the slamming of a door or two, but at the end of the day, this little girl is going to know that no matter what is said in a moment of frustration, I will always, always love her.
Because I carry her heart with me, I carry it in my heart.
Till next time, remember to always take time to squeeze your babies.