It’s 3am and I’m up feeding my third baby. (Clearly, she hates her mother, because she’s past the age where she has to get up around the clock. She’s just choosing to right now.)
But here I am, hardly able to keep my eyes open. I think about my friends who have just had babies in the past few months and I wonder if they are awake like me and if they – like me – are ready for this part to end?
It’s the type of thing you can’t make up your mind over. Sometimes, I want it this part to stop and stay. The part that giggles at a silly game of peek-a-boo or lays her head on my shoulder, eyes whispering wordlessly, “I love you, mommy” up at me.
But sometimes (many times), I wish it away faster.
I wish the potty training was long in the past and they could make their own lunches or entertain themselves with games other than ones that need my constant supervision or involvement. I wish I could run an errand to grab a carton of milk without having to pack OUR ENTIRE LIVES into a diaper bag, then buckle up five-point harnesses getting in (and out!) of vehicles before lugging infant seats in the crook of my arm, all the while listening to the incessant whining and crying for a “snack” that turns into a full-blown meltdown in the aisles of Kroger. (Whew! That run-on sentence made me out of breath.)
“Enjoy every second … It goes by so fast … ” they say.
But maybe I don’t enjoy every second. Maybe, instead, I allow myself to be tired and frustrated. Because… well … I AM TIRED AND FRUSTRATED.
I say it’s almost naive to believe every moment of this Season of Littles – or any season, for that matter – is wholly beautiful.
Maybe, during these long nights and long days, I can be okay with not thinking every part of these days and nights are enjoyable. Maybe, I look forward to the day when I don’t have to interrupt my sleep to wipe snot off faces or feces off a rear-end. (If you told me you missed this, I wouldn’t believe you.) Maybe I enjoy my child, just not this season.
Instead of enjoying it, I will have faith in it. Faith that with this bad, nasty, tiring stuff comes the good, snuggly, giggly stuff.
Faith that the bad, nasty, tiring stuff not just comes with, but makes the good, snuggly, giggly stuff. Faith that this bad, nasty, tiring stuff is making and forming my children… and me.
So I’m going to have faith in the formation. The formation happening in me and in my kiddos as I love and serve them through these hard seasons.
Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12)
Would you join me?
Join me in knowing that not every second we live in this season of parenting is beautiful or enjoyable.
Join me in stepping in faith as we step down that hallway to feed a baby and change a diaper at 3am.
Join me in trusting we are being formed into His likeness, one midnight rock-a-bye at a time.