I think I need to start filtering the words that come out of my mouth.
I mean, duh, of course I need to filter the words that come out of my mouth, especially around my children.
The voices in my head hate me. I guess that means that down deep, I kind of hate myself. This is well documented and is an ongoing issue on which I am working.
Sadly, sometimes I lend an actual voice to the ones in my head. That voice is not nice to me. It says means things about me and sadly, my kids have heard it.
Last night was proof.
As I was putting dinner on the table, I called the girls to come and eat. Tom sat down to assisted Olivia in the consumption of her meal.
I’d put everything on the table except Olivia’s sour cream, which I was in the process of getting from the counter and taking to the table when she announced that I’d forgotten it.
I told her I was bringing it to her and then set it in front of her.
As I started to walk away, she said cheerfully, “You’re a complete idiot.”
Excuse me? I mean, really?
Let me just say right here that hearing those words from my eight year old is way harsher than hearing them from my own head or even in my own voice.
I told her that wasn’t a very nice thing to say and she apologized. But you know what? It’s my own fault she said that. She’s heard me say it and she probably doesn’t even realize how mean it is.
I mean, if someone says something about themselves, why is it wrong for you to say it about them? Right? Right. As a matter of fact, she asked a little while later what ‘complete idiot’ meant.
So yes, I need to be kinder to myself both in my head and out loud.
To give credit where it’s due, I would like to applaud myself for not making any derogatory remarks about myself while we were at the lake the day before. I thought them and I consciously told myself (silently) not to say them. Who wants to hear that kind of stuff from their spouse or mother? No one, that’s who.
If I can’t stop the voices in my head from being mean to me, I can at least stop giving them a voice that can be heard by my girls. They don’t need to hear that stuff. They don’t need to know that Mom is stewing in a bit of self-hatred. I want better for them. I want them to see a mother who loves herself as much as she loves them. I want them to grow up seeing confidence and strength, not self-deprecation and hatred.
If I can’t fix this for me, I need to do it for them.