Friday, May 19, 2006

Blah blah blah

I was unusually irritable this week. I lost my temper a few times. My guess is it was that period of the month when my hormones go bonkers, or I was just plain crabby. On most days, I would be quickly appeased by Markus’s “There, there, Mom. Calm down, calm down.” This week, he didn’t even try.

When upset with my kids, I tend to repeat myself over and over. They often react with, “Okay, Mom” or “Mom, I heard you the first time” or “Yah, yah, yah” because I sound like a broken record, a remix, or extended version. Blah blah blah blah blah. If only they wouldn’t test my patience in the first place. I don’t enjoy nagging. Blah blah blah..

I have observed that I rant in two languages when addressing my kids. English, Tagalog. Tagalog, English. I can’t tell which one is easier. English requires less saliva but the more wordy Tagalog captures more of my thoughts. My younger kids can’t fully understand Tagalog; when upset, I can’t say everything in English. So I switch between the two languages back and forth, back and forth.

There are times when just at the peak of my emoting, I say a boo-boo like, “ACCIDENT HAPPEN!” What a spoiler! Everyone, including me, pretends to ignore it though everyone, including me, feels like saying it right a second time. I think that’s what Gabriel did when he quietly walked over to Markus and whispered something.

On another occasion this week, I snapped at Markus for wearing a jacket with nothing underneath and there was no time to go back to the house.  Blah blah blah blah blah, I went again on the way to the supermarket. It’s so hot! Nobody’s wearing a jacket!... only to find out later that the air-conditioning inside the Superstore warranted an outerwear. I had to admit this boo-boo.

“You are right to wear that after all, Markus. I’m sorry…You are smart to wear a jacket.” Time to eat some humble pie.

Without excusing my outbursts, I still see some merit in expressing negative emotions and being real rather keeping everything inside. It’s even better to identify those feelings while they are happening. I’m upset, blah blah blah… I’m angry blah blah blah… Definitely better than numbing or flatlining in stressful situations.

Well, if my kids never see me in a bad mood, they will not appreciate the good.


lhb said...

Hi Mrs. Blossoms,

It would have been so funny were it not so sad that we usually find ourselves venting our pent up frustrations on those we love most. People outside the house - the boss, people we meet on the road, etc. - may cause us so much frustration but it is the people at home who suffer because they are usually the ones who are nearby when we have to vent. However, your recognition of your nagging at your boys is already a big step up. :-)

I used to be the same. I used to find myself so short tempered, for example, after being frustrated at work or after watching or hearing a local sports team lose. It could be a beautiful summer day, the kids and I could be on a picnic and listening to an Expos game on the radio. If the game ended with them losing, I turned sour and started being surly, yelling at them and bossing them around. The kids started noting this and pointed it out to me. I felt so ashamed when I realized this. I quit following sports after that. Those millionaire athletes just are not worth the pain I was causing my kids. I was so glad when those loser Expos moved to Washington, DC. Let the Americans suffer! And for me, forget about watching the Canadiens either. All they do is provide an excuse for the TV beer commercials. :-)

lhb said...

I forgot to tell you what I used to do when I was on a sour mood. To avoid being around the kids, I'd stay outside and do chores - shovel snow in the winter, wash or work on the car if it's summer. The feeling of accomplishment usually calmed me down.

Incidentally, how are you with your car nowadays? Do you know how to check your fluid levels yet? If you haven't checked your tires since winter, they could be as much as 5 to 10 psi over-inflated when the hot summer days arrive. Don't forget to check your tires before you have driven on them, when they are still cold.

lerryblossoms said...

chores can be a double-edged sword, but yeah, they release my pent up frustration at times. my garden gives me great joy. everything is growing!!

good thing you mentioned car tires. i'm wondering when i should get them rotated. i bought 3 tires last october from wal-mart and they said i could get them to rotate the tires at no cost.

i am much better with fluids now. but since i just i had my car inspected last month, i think my fluids should be okay.

lhb said...

At least somebody's garden is thriving. :-) Mine isn't. My upo seeds did not germinate. I think I put them in the soil a little too early. We had a cold snap a couple of days after I planted them. Can't do too much gardening this year. We're having some work done soon on the house's foundation and I don't know where the heavy equipment will be passing thru the yard.

lhb said...

About the tires, I usually rotate them as I change from summer tires to winter tires and again when I change from winter to summer tires. It seems that you use all-season tires all-year round over there in B.C. So, I guess about every six months would be reasonable? Some people say radial tires should be rotated only along the same side of the car, i.e., from left-front to left-rear and right-front to right-rear. Again, I don't know. Maybe the mechanic at WalMart would be a better source of advice. Just curious, but, how did you end up buying just 3 tires? Usually, tires are installed in pairs. With different tires on the same axle, sometimes the car would feel a little funny, especially on ice. Oh, I forgot. You don't get too many icy winter days in BC.

With the fluids, make a quick check after every fill-up. It only takes a minute.

lerryblossoms said...

Last summer, one of my car tires had a nail and another was also beyond repair. Honda told me to buy new ones similar to the good ones at the rear. Honda did not have that brand so I was advised to try Walmart or some other store. It took me a while to have the budget for new tires, meanwhile praying against road accidents and inflating a tire every twoo weeks. So when manna came from heaven, I immediately went to Walmart. The guys found out that the third one was in bad condition too, which was not surprising at all because the car was old and had been used a long time in CA. Nowadays, I keep the car maintained as best as I know how and pray it will last me as long as necessary. “Lord, please let this run or give me a new one!!” Either way I’m good.

lhb said...

I once had a used Honda too. Hondas are pretty good cars. It was very old and I must have paid only a little more than a $1000 but it ran pretty well. I figured if I could use it for one winter season, I'd have gotten my money's worth. I was able to use it for 3 years!

The problem here is rust because the roads are salted during the winter. The rest of the car was still good but my exhaust system rusted prematurely. I shopped around and the best price I was quoted was $700 to replace the whole system. I went across the border to see if I could get it done cheaper in New York state. They were even more expensive because New York has stricter anti-pollution rules.

I went back home and told my friend, the mechanic. He took me to a do-it-yourself garage where he put the car up on a lift, bent some pipes himself and installed them underneath the car.

I was good with that "lash-up" for about a year until I got stopped by a cop on a random safety check. He wanted me to go for an inspection. I realized that I would be charged for the inspection fee and then fined for having an illegal exhaust system. Double jeopardy! Before my appointed day at the safety inspection came up, I gave the car away for salvage.

I loved that car. Melissa got her driver's license with that car when she turned 16.

lhb said...

With the exchange rate now at about CDN$1.09 per US$1.00, it may be worth it to do some comparison shopping for tires or other car parts when you're down in Seattle.