I took a mindfulness class before the summer started. I imagined that it would help me to be a better mother or, at least, a calmer mother who wouldn’t be screaming and tearing her hair out by July 31st. I would be fully present, with a Zen-like peace that would infect everyone around me. I planned to thoroughly enjoy the summer warmth and light, and the precious time with my family, of course.

The only thing I’ve really enjoyed so far is the sheer amount of different kinds of gin I have tried while sitting on my porch in the evenings. Oh, and this angry mindful mantra I made up for myself that I am privileged to share.

Never a fan of helping kids with homework or endlessly driving them to and from events and activities, I looked forward to the openness of the summer schedule. I had apparently suffered from amnesia regarding previous summers, because I imagined lazy afternoons basking in the sun, endless hours of reading while the kids played in the backyard, and dinners made of fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. In my mind, my life in the summer resembles a beer commercial, where people are laughing and cavorting, half-naked in bathing suits and still able to drink beer without developing jiggling nooks and crannies.

Instead, the summer has been a loosely organized cacophony of chaos, full of hot dogs, chicken nuggets, and yelling from everyone in the household. Fortunately, I have drawn upon my depth of mindfulness training to create this angry and surprisingly comforting mantra during these dog days of summer:

I Will Not Lose My Shit.

640x640 an angry mindful mantra - inset two

There are countless opportunities for this angry mindful mantra to be used in the course of a day – heck, in the course of hour. I mean, who are we kidding? When the stress rises up and you feel more of your hair escaping from your scalp as a result, take a deep breath, hold it for three seconds, exhale slowly, and say to yourself:

I Will Not Lose My Shit.

Here are a few situations in which this angry mindful mantra has helped me to retain my sanity:

When the screams of my children’s fights echo off the walls of my home.

When I drive four hours total in one day to take the kids to and from summer music camp.

When I move the couches to clean underneath them and find a cat turd.

When the kids in the play area of my coffee shop are throwing balls at each other and the ball whizzes by my head.

When I find my kid’s library books in the washing machine.

When garbage lays abandoned within a foot of the waste bin.

When I can no longer find any more matching socks because they are in my kid’s dresser drawers…and the refrigerator.

When I prepare a meal in the crockpot in advance, leave it out all night by mistake, and throw it away the next day lest we all turn into puking machines.

When the internet goes out while I try to work from home and keep the kids busy at the same time.

When a kid “needs” to go to something called a “Pokegym” and I have to drive around trying to find one.

As I peruse the registration forms for my kids, one of which is entering high school, and take note of all of the fees that must be paid by September 1st…

I Will Not Lose My Shit.

Perhaps I am not as calm as I originally hoped to be at the beginning of the summer. Perusing the list of situations for which I have used my angry, mindful mantra, it occurs to me that many of them occur not only during the summer. These sanity-sucking events happen every day. All year long.

640x640 an angry mindful mantra - inset one

It appears that I will be incorporating this angry and mindful mantra every day now, regardless of the season. However, as mindfulness is practiced, one can become more peaceful and accepting, nonjudgmental and reflective. There is still hope for me to be the Zen-like goddess that I imagine myself to be, infecting everyone around me with peace and calm, maintaining not only my sanity, but a full head of luxurious and wavy hair.

Ongoing mindfulness practice is sure to allow me to be fully present in my children’s lives as we enter the new school year, full of excitement, fresh beginnings and new routines.


Kelly Wilson is an author and comedian who entertains and inspires with stories of humor, healing, and hope. She is the author of Live Cheap and Free and Don’t Punch People in the Junk. Her latest book, Caskets From Costco, is a finalist in the 18th annual Foreword Reviews’ INDIEFAB Book of the Year Awards and has also been chosen as a finalist in the 10th annual National Indie Excellence Book Awards. Read more about her and her junk-punching children and Magically Delicious Husband at www.wilsonwrites.com, on Facebook, and on Twitter.

Guest Author

Facebook Comments