Why do I save my ugliest for the ones I love the most?
Sometimes when I look at myself yelling at Jemimah I barely recognise the woman I see. My face. My body language. Even my voice is different. Who is this horrible fearsome creature that has been unleashed upon the most vulnerable of all, my own daughter?
Why is it that I work so hard to build for her a golden childhood only to leave her with a memories like this that she will carry right through her life?
I feel so ashamed, but I just can't stop.
I comfort myself that it happens rarely, but that's not good enough, is it? It needs to happen never.
I'm pondering these questions right now, not because I've been yelling, but because I haven't. We've been on summer holidays of one type or another since the middle of November - first from school but at home, then over Christmas at my parents' and recently although back at school, we've been in Melbourne and operating on 'modified holiday time' spending all of each day at the swimming pool and much of the afternoon outside.
On Sunday we return home. Holidays will be over, and real life will intervene. Life with stresses, life with too much to do. Life with cooking and washing and extracurricular activities and work as well as school. Life with the possibility of being overwhelmed and losing control. Life where yelling is all too likely to happen.
And so I'm pondering. I'm thinking about life. I'm thinking about keeping it like it is when we're in holiday mode. In keeping it a peaceful life all year round.
That's what I want.
Before she's all grown up and its too late.