You didn’t exactly jump out of bed with joy when your daughter came rushing in at 5am to play. You didn’t give your teenage son much of an opportunity to explain himself about his grades. You were distracted at dinner, checking your phone constantly.
There’s no way around it. You screwed up. You weren’t your best.
No way to change that. But the one thing about parenting is that it gives you second chances. Kids forget. They need you for something else. There are lots of tough conversations. Dinner happens every night.
While you cannot undo what has been done, you can choose to take these second chances as they come. You can will yourself to play, even though you’re exhausted. You can stop yourself before getting upset this time, reminding yourself that you love the boy and that he’s still figuring things out. You can put the phone in a drawer and actually be there for the family meal.
As we’ve said before, we don’t get to do this forever. Tomorrow is never guaranteed. That’s why each interaction we have with our kids matters, why we can’t take it for granted. Still, we’re not going to get it right every time. So when we’re lucky enough to get another go? We better take advantage of it. We better try harder. We better show up.