We have a saying in our house (at least I do) that if things are going terribly awry you can always start your day over. In other words, if you’re in a rotten mood, or fighting with your Dreamy spouse, or just irritable, start over. If you start over, you really have to do it, though. You basically have to start with a new perspective and leave all the crap behind. I love Start-Overs and so have introduced them to Bisky who, unsurprisingly, also loves them – although possibly not for quite the same reason.
I first suggested a Start-Over to Bisky a couple months ago. She and I tend to get under each other’s skin and situations escalate very quickly. I have low to no tolerance for whining and crying, and she has low to no tolerance for snapping and shouting. I’m sure the average person can see where things could spiral into ugliness pretty quickly.
So one day, I just took a deep breath and told her “Let’s start over.”
“Let’s start the day over. Good morning Gracie! How are you? Ready to have a great day?” That’s all I had to say and she got it immediately and it works. Only now she wants a Start-Over all the time. I wouldn’t mind, but I think she’s using them to avoid consequences. Like if she hits #NoBen, she immediately will ask for a Start-Over. Or sometimes she’ll ask for them and then keep doing the same thing that made us need one in the first place.
Sometimes I’m tempted to tell her she can’t get a Start-Over when she’s acting like a jerk, but there’s something about Start-Overs that it would feel like a huge betrayal to not grant one when asked. So when she says she wants one I explain that if we have a Start-Over she has to X, Y, or Z. She’ll agree. I hope this is something that will be helpful for her when she gets older. Starting over is the opposite of nursing a grudge or a resentment and I’m convinced that most chronic health disorders arise from untreated resentments so I certainly feel this will hold her in good stead.
Of course, this isn’t how much of the world works, but that’s okay. We’re a little off the beaten track in other ways too. My goal with my kids isn’t to make them fit in to the world, but to provide them enough foundation that they can be resilient while they are blazing a path and finding their tribe so that they can live as authentic
lives as possible. And when that means clashing with me…sigh…that’s what Start-Overs are for, I guess. But sometimes I wish we didn’t need quite so…MANY…of them!