On Saturday we had a ‘phone’ incident. The second ‘phone’ incident in as many months. Awesome Daughter Number 3 has a mobile phone – on contract which she pays for out of her pocket money (along with insurance – her idea) and she’s had it for about three months. One month in, she was messing about with her pals when it got dropped and the screen broke. Bye bye phone. Response – screaming, shouting, threats of grounding and questions about whether she is responsible enough to have a (smart) phone and whether or not she deserves to have a good phone when she clearly can’t look after it! That would be my response. Her Dad, on the other hand, took a deep breath, pulled out the insurance documents made a few phone calls and Hey Presto! a new phone arrived within the week. All good except for a few missing phone numbers and all her favourite music. Calm was restored.
Fast forward to Saturday evening. Last weekend it had been the birthday of one of her friends and Alex had missed it because of other commitments (though I’m not even sure she had been invited – but that’s a whole other mess of self acceptance on my part!) so she invited some of her friends here for a movie night. She baked and decorated a cake and made some cookies. The girls were staying for a sleep over and the boys went home after the film. She had cleaned her room for the girls staying over and she had cleaned the sitting room for them watching the movie. All in all, she made a huge effort to make sure that Jaz had a great night. Then she discovered that her phone had been damaged again – and again the screen was broken. She held off telling her dad and me until the boys had gone and then she waited for the fall out.
To her surprise – and mine – I took a deep breath and didn’t shout. I explained the consequences – no phone until we can get it replaced (and that won’t happen until we have the funds to pay the insurance excess) and if she doesn’t have her phone, then her social life is curtailed.
My default response of taking the incident personally and feeling angry and in pain because things have not gone the way I believe they should – and then shouting screaming and blaming so that she feels as much pain as I do – disappeared. I was able to see that she was already in pain, that shouting and blaming won’t fix the phone and that railing against what ‘is’ won’t change anything. And so I accepted what was. I was able to put into practice all the things I’ve been working on over the last four weeks and understand that resistance really is futile!
Even better, I’m not just sitting on anger, huffing with a simmering bad mood. I’m able to hold her in my heart and send love to her – and hope she realises that an accident happened that wasn’t her fault and that it doesn’t diminish her in any way.
And so my intention for this week is to maintain this attitude of kindness – to myself, my husband, my daughters and anyone else that I have encounters with. Mmm… not so sure about those unsolicited sales phone calls though…!
What is your intention for this week?