Blood on My Hands
Ok... this one is kind of gross, but something interesting happened...
Many of you know that I'm testing a new life management system for SYB and one aspect of it is nutrition management. I've decided to do one recipe a day for snack or dinner. A recipe my daughter picked out was cheese stuffed meatballs in pasta sauce over spaghetti. Now I've never made meatballs before so this was more of a challenge than it may first appear. Also, I don't like raw meat... I used to be a vegetarian, so having my hands in raw meat kind of freaked me out too...
So I'm putting raw hamburger meat into a bowl so I can smoosh it together with egg, seasonings and bread crumbs when I spill/drip blood juice on the corner of the table where my son is working on putting bread crumbs into the same bowl. He actually has his Halloween costume on as he has had it on since he got home from school. He doesn't notice the blood juice drops and immediately puts his arms over the juice and I'm sensing that it might be very difficult to get blood juice out of his costume... I have my hands covered in raw meat / blood juice and I have to mix more stuff in so I don't want to wash my hands, clean up the mess on the table so my little guy won't get into it... so what do I do... I yell...
"Stop, stop, stop, stop, stop..."
Which of course has the effect of increasing the likelihood that my little guy would jump, freaked out at his mother's yelling, and put his sleeves directly in the spot where they will soak up the blood juice.
I really want "to make" or incite my husband to come into the kitchen and clean up the blood juice but he is working on a computer in the other room... and does he??? no... he just says, "Jodi, could you take it easy?" I show him my bloody hands and say excitedly, "I can't do anything about it... not yet..." And he calmly replies, "You don't have to freak out about it... just accept it as what it is and get on with it... be mellow."
Of course he was right... I was still irritated though... but I refocused on the task at hand and was able to take some deep breaths which helped me get through the gross parts without any more freaking out on my behalf.
My son asked me... "Why do you have to say it over and over and over?" to which I had no good reply. I actually said, "I don't know, I'm sorry."
You know... another reason I was stressed? I had a project I was working on behind the house that I left half done in order to start dinner... and I'd rather have been finishing up the project... so my attention was divided from the get go... so I could have either had a more simple dinner... no meatballs just pasta with shredded cheese as I would spend my time finishing the project out back... OR I could have wrapped up my project to finish on another day and immersed myself fully into cooking dinner. That would have been an exercise in Mindfulness... fully focusing on what I was doing in the moment... all the little details... appreciating the contributions of my children... etc.
This is also an example of how it comes to the point of us "losing it". It typically isn't one little thing but a compilation or series of little things building up or all happening at roughly the same time. If we deal with the little things as they arise, we never get to the point of losing it. Like I could have wrapped up my project in the back so that my attention could be fully focused on dinner. I could have asked my daughter to clean up the blood juice mess because I couldn't as my hands were messy too. I could have asked my son to change out of his Halloween costume before he helped me with dinner. I could have arranged my cooking station in a way that would have been less likely to result in blood juice dripping all over the table. I could have had my son take his toys off the table prior to our using it so he would be less likely to reach over where we were preparing food in order to get his toys.
See... a lot goes into it... I'm not going to freak out over any "I should haves..." as I'm convinced that "shoulds" are guilt producing and not helpful... but I acknowledge I could have done things differently and I could do things differently in the future to prevent stressful combinations of things from building up.