This week a bath made me cry. Well, more specifically, scratches on a new bath. Followed by some questionable customer service from a bathroom company before said bath could be replaced with a new, unscratched, model. After losing the plot and shouting “I am SORRY but this is NOT good enough” I hid and had a cry in the kitchen whilst making Ev’s lunch.
I stewed over the bath for a good half an hour, before it struck me; It wasn’t really about the bath. That was just the final straw in my bad day.
Bad days. We all have them, whether in parenthood, work or just life. Those days when it feels as though nothing is going quite to plan, and when you’re more sensitive to it than usual. As a mother, mine usually occur after a disturbed night with either Ev or Harmie (or, worst of all, both).
On those days, my patience wears thin. I find myself being more “shouty mum” than I’d really like to be. I’ll lose my rag, immediately label myself the worst mother on the planet and sob in the nearest available hideaway.
My children can spot a chink in my armour a mile off. It’s always on my bad days that Ev will be more demanding than usual, and far less compliant. He’ll tantrum at tasks that he’d usually carry out without thinking. A simple trip to the loo will require negotiation, bribery and will be met with shouts of “NO I DON’T WANT A WEE”.
The drama will result in us arriving everywhere late, bedraggled and fraught. I’ll spend the day feeling guilty; lamenting my inability as a mother and counting down the hours to bedtime (cue more guilt).
If there’s a way of avoiding these days altogether, I’d love to hear it. But, I expect that for the most part they’re inevitable. The unavoidable result of being exhausted, frustrated, and a tad emotional.
I think it’s on these days that we just need to cut ourselves some slack. Take a step back and remember that being the parent doesn’t stop us from being human. Maybe we all just need to be a little bit kinder – to ourselves.
I think I’ll give myself a pat on the back and check the new bath for scratches now.