Expectations can set you up for failure.
Today, I woke up expecting to be able to snooze for a few more minutes as I usually do while my husband gets up with the boys. Hannah had other ideas. I expected to be able to somewhat enjoy my coffee (which I brewed fresh at 8:00 a.m.) throughout the morning as I usually do. I finished it just before we left for the park at 2:30 p.m. When we got to the park, I expected the kids to run around while sat quietly at a table with Hannah and played on my phone. We spent most of the time with me pushing them on the swings and negotiating who got to play with the sand shovel. I am learning that a day with children rarely turns out quite as I expected.
And it’s not just kids that throw me for a loop. I have expectations of my husband too. For example, I don’t like the fan blowing directly on me. Except for when I do. He should move it because it’s bothering me the way it is.
I get stressed out by the pile of dishes that take over the kitchen sink and part of the counter, and just seeing them puts me in a bad mood. I want for them to get done, whether by me while he watches the baby, or by him while I sit with her.
But I haven’t necessarily vocalized these things, and while it’s possible that over the course of 6 years of marriage my husband may have picked up on them, to expect him to read my mind and know them intuitively isn’t realistic.
These things happen differently than I had expected, and it bothers me. I get annoyed. I end up in a bad mood, and if enough things happen that I didn’t expect, I get angry.
Expectations can set you up for failure. But only if you let them.
I didn’t expect to write this blog post with Hannah sitting on my lap kicking my arms, while her brothers play with cars and Legos and interrupt me with questions. In an ideal world, it would have gotten done while they were all napping at the same time.
Being a parent is teaching me to adapt. To make the best of the situation at hand. And I fail, constantly. But I pick myself back up and try again. When I focus on what I have accomplished, what did go as planned, and the little things that were even better because they didn’t, then I’m okay. It may not have been what I expected. But it was a little piece of life that happened, and I want to enjoy it for what it was, not what it might have been.