I Am So Impatient


I remember Fr. Chad Ripperger once saying that if you don’t know what your primary fault is, just pray to know and God will quickly show you. He is right, and I have experienced this myself!

Another method to discover this is to have children. They seem to bring things out of you that you have no idea are an issue.

I have discovered this week just how truly impatient I am.

Hurry Up

I am a super Type A person, having prided my self at how quickly I can get things done. Always the multi-tasker, you can find me timing things down to the second, just so, maximizing my productivity.

Part of the downside to this is that I always want everyone else to be as quick as me. It has always been hard for me to wait for the slower car to make their turn or for Ethan to decide on his meal when I was ready ten minutes ago.

But guys, parenting is revealing a level of impatience I didn’t know possible.

Toddler Life

Philomena is almost three and she is testing, pushing boundaries, and just driving me mildly crazy right now. She isn’t being bad (I don’t like the labels of “bad” or “good” for little ones… they aren’t of the age of reason and can’t help this right now), but she has been incredibly challenging to parent in the last few days.

It’s like a light switch got flicked on and suddenly my bestest little pal is this hyper, defiant little person that wants to see how far she can push me.

This has all come right after Ethan was off last week for Spring Break (probably making things harder for her on top of it all, having Daddy gone again at work all day), so it has been extra challenging to have this complete chaos after a week of Ethan home.

Is That Me?

I have never been a yeller at Philomena. I truly believe in the gentle parenting philosophy, and have saved any voice raising for warning of true danger. I also know that if I yell or get worked up, it does no good with her, because she isn’t developmentally capable of true empathy, so she just thinks a reaction is funny, or it intrigues her to see how else I react if she does something else to try and get me going.

But despite me knowing full well that losing my temper or raising my voice makes things worse, I have found myself doing just that more this week combined than I have in years. Is that really me I hear? I have been so impatient.

I sounded so mean, so angry, and she is just two.

I am impatient, terribly impatient, and while she could try the patience of a saint, it’s only sanctifying for me if I actually grow in virtue!

So I apologized after I got upset, and again at bed time. I am going to try and keep things in perspective, pray that prayer for patience found here from a few months ago, and keep on trying.

I don’t have anything else earth shattering here to add. I’m just struggling, and maybe it can encourage you to know you’re not the only one if you’re having a hard time too.

Kiss your little ones and hug them extra close. I know things will get better.

8 thoughts on “I Am So Impatient

  1. Around 3 it did feel like a switch went off in my kid. To give you hope, I found it less so with my second. I think it is especially hard with your first. It just was so hard not to be angry with him. It felt like he turned from super sweet to drive me insane. I think I just didn’t have as many skills to deal with the age (it isn’t all that because for sure part of it is just my own lack of virtue). I think you might like the book “Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline”. It has not only helped me with parenting but it is so helpful for marriage and relationships (even our own relationship with our own self talk, etc.). Full warning, I think the majority of this book is great but she does think women have been overly oppressed in the past, etc. but it doesn’t really impact the rest of it, and good principles like disciplining yourself first, then the child, or accepting the moment as it is, etc. I wish there were pointed Catholic books on respect/gentle discipline but there aren’t as far as I am aware so you just have to take the good (and rather Catholic) elements out of these things. If you read it (I listen to small sections on audio daily to try to help me be a better parent) I would love to hear a review and/or comparison to RIE since I think you said on a post you liked it (but forgive me if I am wrong and misremembering). I really wish I had this book at the stage you are in, I found it a few years later. https://www.amazon.com/Easy-Love-Difficult-Discipline-Cooperation/dp/0060007753

    I also found this books model and other gentle approaches to fit best when I put them in a Montessori perspective as she was a devout Catholic and Pope Benedict the XV wanted her method in all Catholic schools because of its Thomistic and Catholic approach. There is an awesome set of lectures here on it that are free: https://www.avemariamontessori.com/helpful-links They are best if you listen in order, jumping right to the discipline one won’t make as much sense. Montessori has been so helpful to me and puts the above book in context of Catholic virtue building, etc. I will also put a disclosure here on the lectures. The speaker does say Montessori was against bed sharing. But that still meant baby in the room in her day. Also, I am and know many other moms who combine this approach with bed sharing, etc. And the speaker mentions full weaning around 1. Montessori never seemed to say that herself. I Have looked pretty extensively into it (as I am semi into ecological breastfeeding). My understanding is many modern Montessori followers promote that but she did not. Even if so, it is just a point she is wrong on in my opinion as the science backs up extended nursing. I bring these two points up just to say, these lectures are still incredibly worthwhile, so if you hear those points don’t let it turn you off. Better to, like me, have those points (and possibly others) you depart from, and get lots of the good out of it. I have actually wondered before if you were into Montessori when I saw your posts about a slow childhood, etc. It fits well with that and things like the TLM since she promotes giving the most beautiful things to children. Hope you will get to check them out. It might make for a great follow up post with thoughts (pro or against), etc.

    Thanks for your blog! I always enjoy it and am constantly sharing it, so much great stuff here!


    1. These looks like wonderful resources, I haven’t heard of Easy to Love that I know of, so I’ll definitely see if it’s at the library, or grab a used copy off Amazon! I will write down listening to the Montessori talks this week while I clean. I understand that everything seems to require a little combining of methods. I *love* so much of what Janet Lansbury has to say, but on the flip side I use lots of attachment parenting stuff too.

      Thanks for reading and sharing.


  2. I love this. So simply put, yet important to remember.
    I love St. Francis De Sales’ Meekness Prayer when I have a rough day of yelling and frustration.
    I’m curious what your take is on first time obedience. It’s kind of the mainstay of parenting methods in traditional circles but gentle parenting has worked well for us to a point so I’m wondering if the two can be melded as philosophies or if they are polarizing as approaches.


    1. Staci, I think it is a great question. Something I am constantly thinking about. I am curious to hear anyone’s thought on it. My personal thought is that as they get older you can slowly develop the idea of obedience out of love (as opposed to out of fear – which I find is the more standard approach, especially when done with kids below the age of reason, especially in this 2-4 age group). And obedience should be quick and joyful so the first time thing sort of falls under that.


    2. I’ll have to look up that meekness prayer, Staci!

      As for first time obedience, I simply don’t see that as practical with children Philomena’s age. The part of the brain that regulates impulse control doesn’t really start developing until age 4, I believe it is, so be expecting/demanding first-time obedience, I’m asking what is really out of her range, and would therefore need to punish her for something that she isn’t ready for.

      I am certainly no parenting expert and am figuring things out as I go, but I feel like expecting that before the age of reason is setting us up for a lot of frustration and failure.


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