Sunday, April 5, 2009

MAKING YOUR HOME SING MONDAY: COMPLAINING

Making your home sing Mondays




Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday meme!

Yesterday it was 70° ! 70°!!! How awesome is that? Except for you Floridians and others who are boasting 80's or 90's, etc.

I was driving my youngest over to a friend's house to do a little male-bonding over basketball. I had the windows down and was listening to music, the sun was out, it was light and bright and the days are getting warmer and longer. Spring is finally here! For today at least.

It got me to thinking about the temperature of a woman's home. We are the barometers of our home. You've heard the phrase "If mamma's happy, everybody's happy." We can bring light to our homes, or gloom!

If you don't believe me, start slamming cupboard doors, snip at everyone and complain alot, and let's see how quickly everyone's mood takes a nosedive, including your own.

When the kids were younger, my husband would come home from work, and I'm sure he would have loved about 30 minutes to unwind, read the paper, put his feet up, whatever. As women, and especially women who are home with the kids all day, we tend to view our husband's job as a "break." When he comes home, we expect help. Right. Now. And. Hurry. Up.

Dad comes in the door and it's "Here's the kids. I've been doing this all day. It's your turn." Sometimes I even met him at the door with baby in hand! I totally agree that Dad needs to be supportive at home. But mom needs to be supportive of Dad and understanding of him too.

My poor husband would come home and the kids would be whining and I'd be whining and nobody was particularly happy at the moment. Does that sound like something you'd want to come home to? Does that sound like something you'd hurry home to?

Can you imagine being greeted at the door with complaints about mom's day? If mom is complaining about her day all day, does dad think she's glad to be home? I love the verse from Proverbs 25:24 that says "Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife."

Another one is Prov. 21:19 "Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and ill-tempered wife."

Really. A desert is preferable? A corner of the roof is preferable?

When hubby comes home we are so tempted to unload on him. Unload our frustrations, our anger, complaints, unhappiness or whatever we were feeling that day. I know more than once my husband said something like "If you're so unhappy, maybe you might be happier if you go back to work."

That took me by surprise. Because I was happy. I loved being home. Not that he could tell that by my behavior or anything. Can your husband tell it by yours? (I know, ouch! Sorry.)

I wasn't doing myself any favors by storing up and building up all these emotions, waiting to unload them on my unsuspecting husband. I wasn't doing him any favors either. I would have been better off praying about them instead of stewing about them.

Eventually, I learned to give my husband about 30 minutes after he came home to unwind. I made a big deal about having the kids and I greet him at the door (when we could), then we would give daddy some time to relax after his day.

Just having that time for daddy helped me too. It helped me think about what wasn't working in the "crying hour," the hour before dinner when the kids were crazy and I was crazy trying to fix dinner. It helped me come up with ideas to make that transition time more peaceful for the kids and for me.

I imagine those of you who work outside the home run into the same problem. When you come home tired after working all day, and now you get to fix dinner. Goody!

I came up with snack options, activities to occupy them, and tried to have dinner preparations better thought out and planned. I also learned to hold my tongue, and give my husband time to unwind before "unloading" on him. I discovered I was able to "unload" with a better tone of voice and better choice of words. Easing the transition stress for the kids eased my stress too.

Waiting to talk with my husband allowed me to take it down a notch. To be able to calm down a bit and tell him about my day, minus the crying. It helped us to be able to discuss it without me getting emotional, defensive, or being argumentative. It also helped me realize that maybe my hubby had a few good ideas, which I learned to listen to instead of automatically shooting them down.

My kids are older now, but I still have moments where I "unload" my day the minute my husband walks through the door. Imagine walking in the door and being told the dog is throwing up, the sink is backing up, and so is the toilet....and would you please go fix everything....you get the idea.

For today, I am going to try and remember to give my husband some downtime when he gets home....what about you?

What are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing? Please go here for instructions and/or ideas and come back here to link up to join us today! As always, please don't forget to leave me a comment!




21 comments:

  1. I thought this post was really great! I agree that when my attitude is stinky it really rubs off on everyone else! I remember reading that verse in Proverbs when I was a little girl and it has always made an impression. :0)

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  2. Your home usually helps my home sing, too! I've come to learn this over the years, too. Definitely the kids being a little older helps, but there are always things to unload! I learned something at one of my MOPS meeting and I will never forget it: Our husbands would be so lucky if he was greeted at the door like a dog greets us! If you have a dog, they're always so happy to see us when we get home, and we love seeing them! I try to remember how Skipper feels when we get home, and to learn from his attitude! LOL! It's a hard thing to learn, though ;) Thanks for sharing!

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  3. Great post! I agree, my attitude totally affects everyone else in my home. It's hard not to complain sometimes, but I try to be cheerful when my husband comes home so he will want to be home with us!

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  4. love this post, i have done that very thing unload when Tito walks in the door but i also work when i can and for me it is a break because not hearing mom for 8 hours can be refreshing...lol

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  5. Another wonderful post, my friend!!

    A few years ago, my friend discipled me, and one of the things we talked about was this very subject. I make sure the kids are not bombarding him (even myself) when he gets home. Of course, they get excited when they hear him pull up, and will even run outside to greet him! But, I mean as far as tattling or complaining themselves.

    I have my post ready for tomorrow!!! :)

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  6. I remember when our first had colic...the second he walked in the door I handed a crying baby over to him and walked out. I am much better about that now, and I do give him down time, but he has an hour drive home so he uses that for down time too. Works out good.

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  7. Awesome post! Usually when we are complaining, we are thinking only of ourselves!

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  8. Wow does this post ring some chords!
    Been there, done that! Sheesh!
    You are so right.. we set the tone in the house and wow, can it be bad sometimes....
    Thanks for the great reminder :)

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  9. Yes that was a great post. I will have to say that unfortunaly or fortunatly in the day and age of cell phones that I can call and unload while my hubby is at work. Aaarrrgg one of the kids puked all over the floor and the cat is trying to eat it and the other one is playing in it. But it is true that we do set the thermometer (notice mom in the middle) of our home. I like it and it is a great reminder of how we need to treat our king and our KING

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  10. Bravo Bravo for a great inspiring post! LOVE it!

    xox
    *~Michelle~*

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  11. Downtime for my husband right after work is so important! Thanks for the reminder to give him that time before I start in on all the things I want to say to, or do with, him.

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  12. These are good thoughts. I found that he isn't really able to listen and hear everything when I would unload everything right away anyway. We have some tea and talk time after dinner. It's just right for us. Sorry I'm not linking up today. Going to Lake Geneva w/ hubby for a Bible conference. (WI) Like the idea..of hooking up every MOnday if I can.

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  13. Oops that was me: the last comment. My daughter was signed in, and I didn't realize it. So, you can see my lovely daughter too.

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  14. A few years ago, there was a pastor of a church somewhere in the midwest who began a no more complaining campaign. He and his congregation wore purple bracelets that had to be switched from one arm to the other every time a complaint was uttered. The goal was to keep it on the same arm for two weeks. All (even those who thought they weren't complainers) were surprised at how difficult keeping that bracelet on one arm was. Thanks for such a terrific reminder to keep a positive attitude.

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  15. It is SO easy to just unload on the man when he gets home. I try not to do it too much myself but since I'm pregnant and tired it's been a little harder! Although my husband has been very understanding.

    Thanks for the reminder though, that he's probably had a pretty stressful day too, you know, supporting the family and all! ; )

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  16. Great post my friend! My husband and I always try to have time for ourselves when he gets home from work. Just a few minutes to unwind and talk about things helps so much. Take care my friend! Hope you are having a great day!

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  17. Great Idea....I hope I played correctly.

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  18. I need to work harder at making my home sing. Thanks for the reminder.

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  19. That is so true, I remember those days that just felt so overwhelming. Thanks for sharing your heart...what a Great post.

    Joyce
    http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/patchwork

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  20. Well we don't have kids and I must admit that my days are really pretty good most of the time. But I definitely know better than to start in on my husband the minute he walks through the door. He is usually so exhausted he needs a nap, so I wait until after dinner before I do any whining at all. I must admit though I would be less willing to wait if I had been chasing kids all day and been trying to keep up with the house work.

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  21. Sooo true! Definitely need to watch my complaining even if it is silently through banging things around. I clam up sometimes and then let feelings fester. Ugh!

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