- Teaches me patience
I’m not a patient person (just ask my husband), so when I’m faced with child who takes what seems like forever to eat her meals or get out of a particularly difficult stage, I’m challenged. But I’m learning to relax and go with it. Lizzy will move on, in her own time. I might as well enjoy the moment we’re sharing.
- Gives me a mirror
Surprise, surprise, my daughter is just like me in many ways. She loves to eat, is kind of lazy, throws a fit if she isn’t getting what she wants, likes to be the center of attention, and recharges by reading books. When I’m finding some of these traits annoying, I’m reminded how much God puts up with my own annoying traits.
- Helps me see my idols
When I catch myself getting angry, chances are, Lizzy is rolling all over one of my idols. When she’s cranky and needs her daily walk, and I’m tired, I see my comfort challenged. When she won’t let me get chores done, I confront my insecurities about how people will see the state of my home. And while it’s never enjoyable to have one’s idols threatened, it is enlightening, especially when it happens several times each day…some days more than others. I’m surprised by how certain idols are losing their power over me, as they are dashed to the ground each day.
- Teaching me I’m not in control
This has been the biggest way God’s been working on me through Lizzy. I try to plan for all contingencies, whether we’re going out or just for our day at home. And I can never plan for everything that can happen. I’ll pack extra clothes for her, only to have her spit up on one and soil another with a diaper blowout. Lizzy will decide to shorten her nap when I plan on getting something done during that time. Or, the most difficult of all, is getting a baby with 24 hour colic for the first few months of life. I had NO control over that. But God is showing me he’s in control of it all, and he shows me grace along the way.
I’m excited about the next stage in her life and to experience all the things God is going to teach me through raising her.
And it keeps getting better.