Guest Post- “I quit on your love…when parenting hurts.” by Tami Overhauser

 

When my son was little, he would get mad and stand in his chair at the table, in a pull-up and nothing else,  proclaiming,

“I quit on your love!”

We would bite our lips to keep from laughing because he was so little and serious.We have no idea where he got such a phrase and were surprised at the intensity of his delivery. It was very telling of the things to come…. It was a phrase HE used for a short period of time but one that our family adopted as a funny way to say, “I don’t like what you are saying to me right now.”

 

As my family got older and bigger, more serious words took on deeper more serious meaning. All four of my kiddos in the heat of the moment have declared the dreaded,

“I hate you!”

I have said it too…unfortunately.

or

“The feeling is mutual!”

or even,

“Back atcha big guy.”

 

Maybe even,  “Well, you are just a f****** peach to live with aren’t you now?” Maybe. BTW… this is a list of things NOT TO SAY! My love of words is my greatest strength and also my greatest weakness. I don’t want to lash back but I do. I have tough leathery skin, (literally and figuratively.) and I can take a lot, especially in context, but sometimes words hurt, coming from those I love, like a sucker punch from somewhere in the back. The kind that knocks the wind out of you in slow motion. It hurts because these people are a part of me and feel ingrained and grafted into my skin and I love full force with no buffers or fences or boundaries and I get hurt.

I’ll take the hit….

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it….( actually I did not.)

 

But today my heart aches, and my stomach hurts and I am asking God to mend what is broken. I am guilty of saying harsh words as well and I need to learn to hold my tongue. I remember my own dad saying to me one time that He wouldn’t choose to live with me if he didn’t have to. (I was a big brat.)  It hurt bad! Obviously, because 30 years later I still remember  it and I can’t even remember what I ate for breakfast so there’s that. That may have been the first time I used the phrase “Right back atcha big guy!”

 

This week my own child declared,

“I am sooooo done with you!”

It came from a deep dark place that surprised me.  but also didn’t if that makes any sense. Frankly,  I wanted to say,”Ditto! Me too kiddo! I want to be done! I want to fast forward to being an empty nester or rewind to barbies and legos! Anything to not be “stuck here in the middle of my story” as my friend Chris Blue writes. But here we are not quitting, but rather apologizing, and finishing strong instead of being done. Overhausers are strong willed and fiercely loyal and not quitters. Especially not on each other. We are repairers, healers, and distance goers.

 And I can love you longer than you can hate me!

 

At our wedding, my husband and I  took vows that went something like this.

 

to have and to hold,

from this day forward,

for better, for worse,

for richer, for poorer,

in sickness and in health,

to love and to cherish, forsaking all others,

till death do us part.

 

Then the pastor said something like,

What God has put together let no man put asunder or tear apart.

We should have a family wedding and take family vows……. they are mine and I am theirs.

 

I Tami take you Samantha,

I Chad take you Adam…

We together take you Rebekah, David till death do us part.

 

and nobody is quitting  or done.

End of story.

 

1 Peter 4:8

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.

 

Tami’s posts can be found at www.tamioverhauser.com

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