So, when you blow it, mama, when you yell or cancel next week's birthday party or when you physically remove them from the room kicking and screaming instead of doing all the things you were "supposed" to do because you were exhausted/sick/at the end of your rope and you are now calmer but still angry and dc is in tears......
What do you do? How do you go about healing?
Give me a few minutes while I caffeinate.
It's okay for DC to see that you make mistakes and sometimes have trouble controlling your emotions too, and by trying to make amends and start fresh you're setting a good example. What else is there to do when you mess up?
If I act irrationally I usually catch myself right after. I look my child in the eye and explain that mommy is sorry she behaved or yelled that way. I still proceed to calmly describe the behavior that got me so upset and that it was not acceptable to me and that while I'm disappointed in the behavior I still love them and am never disappointed in them as people.
I cry and yell and lose my temper pretty often. I'm human and I have emotions . Fortunately, I don't often threaten or punish (or threaten to punish) so I'm not using my power over my daughter at the same time that I'm loosing my temper.
I think saying "I'm sorry" is the most important first step. I try to do it promptly, to her face and at her level (ie: on the floor if she's throwing a fit on the rug). I then explain why I blew up-- just the final trigger not rehashing why we're in a fight-- but I do tell her how it made me feel. We hug and I let her cry and tell me why what I did bothered her. I agree that I acted like a toad. But, I then explain why what she was doing made me so mad. Usually we both cry and then we find a way to make up... a compromise using the timer is a common solution, or just a restart (this morning we decided to start the day over, for example) or we go and change the scenery.
For better or worse, I never leave a fight alone. I insist on working it out before moving on.