A saint even, is what my aunt and uncle from Peru call me. I am loving it and soaking it all in.
It's all relative, of course. This is my mother's family talking, the family of sharp-tongued, entitled, beautiful people who have little tolerance for anything or anyone who is less than perfect in every way. I was raised by one, duly traumatized by it, and I have chosen to fight my unforgiving instincts and be a loving, patient, fair, kind and affectionate mother. To make my children my priority, without being my obsession. So of course, when they are having temper tantrums, and whining, and demanding, and selfish (as 4-yr-olds and 2-yr-olds are wont to do), I try to be compassionate and respond in patience, fairness, kindness and love. I mostly don't succeed at it all, but I try my fiercest. So of course they say this when every example of motherhood my aunt and uncle have seen, most recently in their daughter with her 5-yr-old, falls into the more tyrannical category. They are amazed at my patience.
I on the other hand know what goes thru my head, and mostly I am at tipping point. I want to just yell at the kids "Shut the f**k up already!" or, "Fine, don't eat at all! Go outside naked! I couldn't give a s**t anymore!"
But I don't.
I am breaking the cycle, one day at a time.
Actually ... you know... they might be right... Maybe I AM a saint!