Tuesday, November 6, 2012

growing pains and finding joy

Everett has always been a wild child - into everything, running, jumping, but also as sweet as they come. When Graham showed up, he had a rough time. He was emotional and difficult and not his usual sweet self. Fast forward 8 weeks and we are still sometimes living in that place of disobedience and difficulty. I think we've come to realize that part of his acting out is and was from being dethroned by his little brother. The hard (and other) part is that he's becoming a very strong willed 2.5 year old boy and that these are just growing pains.

soda stealer

So lately, I've been battling with a range of emotions - frustration, anger, sadness, guilt, embarrassment. And it's just been hard. Last week I hit my breaking point. I'm not sure why. Maybe pregnancy hormones or lack of sleep or any number of things really.  My dear friend Calli took time out of her day (with 2 small kiddos of her own) to talk to me and point me back to Jesus. I spent some time with the Lord and was reminded that in all of those conflicting emotions that there is one I've been forgetting: JOY.

We had a rough couple of weeks and I allowed myself to dwell on the bad instead of the good. I've realized that I need to choose joy in parenting Everett, even in hard seasons like this. I need to find joy even when we've been in time out most of the morning,  when I've asked him to do something 4382 times, when he tells me that HE is in charge, or hit me because I told him no. So often joy is a choice and ironically enough, I've had a sign hanging on my wall since last year reminding me of that.

The thing is--- there are so many things to be joyful about throughout the day. Everett is so fun and inquisitive and hilarious. It's funny how when life gets difficult I can let the bad stuff overshadow the good. I mean, what's not to love about this kid?

So that's where we're at, where I'm at. I've got a wild and crazy and sometimes disobedient 2.5 year old. No one ever told me parenting would be this hard. Then again, maybe they did and I didn't understand. Being Everett's mom is still one of the best things that ever happened to me, it just looks different in this season. It's not always easy, but it is worth it. Since last week, we've had more good days than bad, more happy moments than frustrating ones, more joy and less frustration. It's amazing how I just needed a perspective change. This month especially I'm giving thanks and choosing joy and have it hanging on my wall as a reminder.

1 comment:

Hannah @Supermommy!...Or Not. said...

I've been having an incredibly hard time with my two oldest kids (almost 5 and 2 1/2). Between the constant whining, arguing, disrespect, tantrums, etc from them, they make their baby sister seem incredibly easy to handle. Thanks for being so honest about your own struggle with behavior! It helps to know I'm not the only one going through it. I just keep telling myself that it's a phase and sooner or later, they'll come out of it.