I’ve been having nightmarish issues with Asher’s naps for the last couple of weeks. And by “naps” I mean little spurts of sleeping followed by very loud episodes of screaming that I would have the obnoxious audacity to place him in such a contraption as a crib and have the ungodly intention of having him sleep for an hour and a half. Follow this with lots of internal Christian cursing and eventually we found ourselves within the confines of Operation Sleep Baby Sleep for the sake of every last small remaining cell of wholeness within me.
On Monday I purposed to stay home all week so that we could have predictability and stability. I was armed with some info from Baby Whisperer and a few maternal instincts. Monday went as normal. Sleep for 25-30 minutes, wake up crying and refuse to put himself back to sleep. So I went in, adjusted his blankie, and laid him right back down. He was very mad about this. I went in a few minutes later and did the same thing. We did this for probably 20-25 minutes. Eventually he went back to sleep and slept for another half hour, at which time I went in and got him up when he started crying. The next nap was the same thing except that it only took about 10 minutes. Tuesday through Wednesday morning were similar, but finally Wednesday’s afternoon nap he slept straight through for an hour and a half without me having to go in there. Even though he woke up twice he put himself right back to sleep both times. Today we’ve had exactly the same thing. All praise be to the Lord from whom all blessings flow.
I know that I hadn’t been good about maintaining a routine for him so he got used to sleeping on the go or being woken up to get out and about, in addition to having been on vacation which really throws a baby’s routine off. I’m just very thankful we seem to be getting back on the right track.
The Lord has been doing so much work in my heart lately which in turn has caused much better attitudes and words (Matthew 15:18-20). By God’s grace I’ve been much more intentional about stopping and saying (sometimes out loud), Lord, I’m very frustrated right now. I need to be filled again with your Spirit. Give me your grace and ability to be patient and kind right now.
As a parent you have certain hot-button items that can send you from a stable, emotionally healthy human being to an unstable, wild-eyed and crazed woman who should possibly be institutionalized. One of those things for me are interrupted naptimes. Our bathroom wall is the adjoining wall to the boys’ bedroom and right on the other side is Asher’s crib. So I was taking a shower and I knocked something over and it was really loud. I was immediately so furious at myself and super frustrated. But I literally said out loud, The anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. The anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. Lord, fill me with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.
It’s not like it was a magic formula, but I was taking my anger and replacing it with the living, life-giving word of God. As wise people before me have said, Whatever you feed, grows. If I get angry and continue to feed that with frustrated comments or body language or loud sighs, then my anger will keep growing. But if I stop, take it captive and replace it with lovely and truthful thoughts, then that’s what’s going to grow.
Still have a long way to grow but I’m so encouraged at God’s faithfulness to transform me into His likeness.