Friday, October 17, 2008

(Good thing his first words the next morning were, "You look pretty, Mama!")


I've talked before about making mothering my mission. Part of what I loved about my full-time LDS mission is that I was constantly challenged, thus I constantly prayed, thus constantly felt Heavenly Father strengthening me. It was refining. I grew a lot.

And even though I have done a lot of hard things since then (you know, like adjusting to marriage, teaching 26 seven-year-olds, dealing with BYU froshies' shenanigans, birthing 2 babies), I haven't really felt like I've grown very much. Like I've just been muddling through. And too often, I've been doing that muddling on my own--forgetting to constantly ask God for help the way I did as a missionary.

Then came this week. We are in Utah. Taylor is in Toronto. I told you yesterday what kind of nights baby Rog has been having. But did I mention that my once champion sleeper (8p.m.-8a.m.) Blaine has been refusing to go to bed, waking up in the night and not wanting to go back to sleep, waking up super early, etc? With Taylor there it was rough. With Taylor gone it has been horrendous. The other night looked like this:

12 a.m. nurse crying babe
2 a.m. nurse crying babe
3 a.m. lie down with crying Blaine
3-4:30 a.m. get head-butted and smacked in the face by flailing, half-asleep Blaine
4:30 nurse crying babe
4:45 get Blaine back to sleep
5:00-8:30 sleep (thank the heavens above)

And right smack dab in the middle of all of that it came. In bed with tossing and turning Blaine, nursing B. Rog, and fighting back tears- I prayed. You know how desperate you feel when you need sleep? I was desperate for help. I was so angry with Blaine (how ridiculous is it to be angry with a two-year-old?!) and so weary and I just whispered to God that I needed his strength to endure because I just couldn't do it by my own wimpy self.

And do you know what happened instantaneously? My anger turned to love. I got those babes back to sleep and even woke up cheerful in the morning. (no small feat. ask any of my mission companions how much i love mornings.)

Simple? Yes. But I tell you what, I felt closer to God than I have for a long time. And I felt his power. It was a refining moment. I feel myself growing.

I've missed that feeling.

10 comments:

Laurie said...

I am always amazed at how the Lord strengthens us when we ask. It is so simple to ask, yet I often forget. Sleepless nights are the WORST. It will be easier in your own home

Spencer said...

Thanks, Anne, for reminding me. I don't know why it is so easy to forget how involved God wants to be in our lives. I think I've forgotten, to an extent, how real and powerful prayer is. Your reference to your mission caused me to think of my own, and how much I depended on Him, and how much I prayed. I have need to repent--to change--and pray more often and more sincerely. Thank you for taking the time to share. Thank you for your friendship and kindness to me. It was so good to see you the other day. I will continue to remember you and your family in my prayers. And I know that God will continue to bless you as you call on Him. Thanks again. I love you guys. :o)

Sally said...

Oh man have I needed to remind myself of this so many times. I think every mother goes through the experience of pleading for help in the middle of the night amidst tears of exhaustion. I know I have. Several times. Mothering seems like it should be so easy. We love our children without end and only want whats best for them. It is so easy to forget though that it is the most difficult job there is and one that we cannot do alone. Hang in there. Hopefully when you get back to your regular routine the boys will start sleeping good for you again.

Christina said...

Thanks for sharing, Anne. I think you are amazing!

jeanine said...

What a great reminder. Thanks Anne. And ridiculous to be angry with a two year old? Perhaps... but so so easy! (Especially when you're tired!)

Joan said...

I needed this post tonight. Made me cry. I can just picture you with your two boys. Giving every last ounce of yourself to them and then asking H.F. for him to give you just a little bit more so you can endure. There is nothing harder for me (in the realm of Motherhood) than sleep deprivation. I can do almost anything with a good night's sleep. But without it I am a grouchy wench.
I love your strength, Anne. Keep writing.

Jill said...

Went to TOFW this weekend, came away uplifted and filled with a renewed committment to my family. Not just my children but spouse too. Tried real hard to keep it together yesterday, did everything I could for my children and spouse. Went to happier than I have ever gone to bed before....then woke up to the mess that I ignored all day. Happy Days!

Jill said...

Went to TOFW this weekend, came away uplifted and filled with a renewed committment to my family. Not just my children but spouse too. Tried real hard to keep it together yesterday, did everything I could for my children and spouse. Went to happier than I have ever gone to bed before....then woke up to the mess that I ignored all day. Happy Days!

Katie and Brett said...

Hi Anne! How have you been? Your boys are adorable! Hope all is going well!

families are forever said...

Anne, Loved your blog and mothering as a mission! You are an amazing lady. Love Danette