I didn’t intend my last post to end so dramatically. I feel somewhat sheepish because the change really isn’t that big of a deal, although dealing with my attitude is why this post fits the Wisdom Wednesday theme.
Have you ever considered that pride causes us to act in the best interest of ourselves, not our children?Awhile back we had a problem with David and Bethel getting up before Laurel. The biggest problem was that David and Bethel could very well entertain themselves while I slept longer or got ready for my day, but then Laurel would wake up and cry until I went to take her out of the crib. And once she saw me, she wanted to be held, breakfasted, a change in clothes, and my day was always starting before I had a chance to wake up completely. It’s not the only way to address the problem, but we put Laurel in a toddler bed, which worked okay for nighttime but not for naps. After a few months back in the crib, we tried the toddler bed again. She’s now at the same age we successfully introduced the toddler bed for David and Bethel, so she should be ready, right?
Bottom line, she regressed. She stopped going right to sleep at night, and actually started getting up early in the morning, much earlier than David and Bethel. And she started getting up at night, so we’ve been sitting outside her door until she goes to sleep. That was a challenge at first because she didn’t understand that mommy wasn’t playing a game with her, even after I repeatedly got up, told her to lie down, and told her that she must obey mommy. She’d just giggle and hop up the minute I had turned around. And when I gently tapped her bottom, she giggled all the more and started tapping her own bottom when I walked back in the room. That was more than a little humiliating, and I still didn’t know how to teach her what I wanted. Everything I tried failed.
I finally gave her one swat over her diaper, her first. It really did help her understand that staying in bed wasn’t a game, but she still kept popping up (obediently lying back down when she was told!). I’ve been vigilant, patient, and consistent, to no avail.
Last week, I realized that the very reason I had put her in the toddler bed was that I wanted her in bed longer, and that goal wasn’t being met. So, I had Lee set up the pack-and-play in her room beside her bed last night. She went right to sleep without any difficulty. I hate to admit that she wasn’t ready, but… her delighted response when I put her in the crib seems to demonstrate that she really isn’t ready developmentally for the bed. She needs the boundaries still.
Why is it that my pride keeps me from loving my children as I ought to? Putting a child in a toddler bed is of no spiritual consequence, but the thoughts and intents of my heart are crucial. My stubborn pride is what has kept me from simply concluding that my second attempt was too soon. No, I don’t see any devastating effects from my sinfulness, but the willingness to put my own needs above my child’s is sobering. I desperately need humility; I need God’s grace in my life. These verses have been in my mind recently as a result of the toddler bed saga.
Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom. Proverbs 13:10
The LORD will destroy the house of the proud: but he will establish the border of the widow. Proverbs 15:25
Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:8,9
But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. James 4:6