Friday, June 11, 2010

Great Expectations

Today I had a lot of work related errands to do, followed by a yearly checkup for Bess. I dragged the kids out of the house early this morning, brought them to the rink, expected them to sit in the office while I met with our copier guy, then stuck them in the car, drove them around for awhile, brought them to the law office of the organization's President and expected them to behave while I spent over an hour meeting with a banker, then stuck them in the car again, brought them to Whole Foods, asked them to select and eat their food in ten minutes so we could get back in the car and run to the doctor where we then proceeded to wait an hour and fifteen minutes for our appointment to begin.

They did not behave well. By which I mean they were loud, unable to sit still, hungry, and distracting. In other words, they acted like, you know - kids.

Needless to say, I was irritated by their behavior. I was tired, embarrassed and unable to concentrate. I ended up nursing Harry in the glass-walled conference room at the law office, which was met with looks of shock, dismay and I think I even detected a little disgust. I have been trying to really focus on what is important, and on making my kids my top priority no matter what other people think or say, but this was one of those times where that was impossible. For me, anyway. I needed to have these meetings, I needed to have them with me, and I wanted them to act like adults.

I started to think about all the things that my kids do, and that people do in general, that upset me and wonder what that is about for me. I think a lot of times it's really simply about a mismatch between expectations and reality. In the case of children, it is often a mismatch between reasonable expectations and reality. That was certainly the case today. If I set my kids up for failure, is it really fair to then get upset when they fail? They are who they are, and is it their fault when who they are does not match who I want them to be either in general or in a particular circumstance. No, I don't think it is.

I'm going to work on that.

No comments:

Post a Comment