Struggling to Not be a Super Soaker

Maybe that title should read struggling to be more of a super soaker.  I am actually a pretty strong sponge.  By the way, I’m not talking about water guns and sponges in the literal sense here.  When I say that I’m a sponge, I don’t mean I’m the female version of a certain Nickelodeon television character.

I'm not a female version of this guy!
I’m not a female version of this guy!

My apologies if you now have that theme song stuck in your head.   No, what I’m referring to in this post of  my 31 Days of Putting My Family First series, is emotion.  Sweet emotion.  Hey, that’s a better song than the Spongebob theme (Google it, young friends!).   What I mean by saying I’m a sponge is that I tend to soak up the moods of others.  I seem incredibly sensitive to soaking up the bad moods of others especially at home.

If I’m in a somewhat cheerful mood and my husband has had a hard day and comes home grumpy, guess who else ends up feeling grumpy?  I wish I was not like that.  Instead of putting my family first, I get out-of-the-way.  Basically, instead of trying to cheer my husband up, I go and hide.  If the kids are whiny, I don’t try to cure their whines.  I hide or get annoyed when they start whining that I’m hiding.  The bathroom is a really bad place to hide from children, by the way.  They will find you.

I struggle with this quite often.  I struggled with this last night.  It made it hard to want to write a post about putting my family first today.  Yep, they were rather grumpy and whiny last night.  One thing I noticed is that I deal with the moods better if I’m not tired, hungry, or hurting (hello, pulled muscle!).    Sometimes, the answer is that I need to put me first in order to put them first.  A couple Tylenol and a heating pad helped me cope last night.

Sometimes though, I have no excuse.  I don’t want to be a sponge.  I don’t want my moods to be dependent on their moods.  I want to be able to help and not hide because I don’t know how else to cope.  Right now, I am more likely to hide (although not in the bathroom!) than help.

I would much rather be a super soaker and spray (share) my cheerfulness and some fun with my family.   It’s an area where I struggle.  I am hoping by admitting I struggle with this, I can start to think of a solution because sometimes even strong sponges fall start to fall apart.  I don’t want to be an ugly sponge.   How do you deflect the bad moods of the people close to you or do you struggle with soaking up the wrong emotions the same as me?

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