The other day, we were packing for a trip and I was in “efficiency mode” with a lot to do. Everyone else in the family but me likes getting on the road at an hour that any normal person would like to be asleep. Which means that at 5 a.m. I’m not only grumpy and tired because of the early start, but I usually have the most to do to get the car ready to pack – and I’m resenting both those things. In my irritation I start snapping at the kids or at Jeff like a drill marshal. “No, that bag can’t go in the car yet! Not until all these snacks are packed up, and I wash the grapes, and get the drinks in the cooler!”
Finally I realized: I don’t even like myself. There’s no excuse for the vinegar here. Either I tell Jeff and the kids that I don’t want to be on the road that early and/or I let them do the tasks I’m trying to do, or I go along with it all with a determinedly good attitude. It is unfair of me to let a situation occur in which I know I will be resentful and “vinegar-y” and ruin it for everyone else.