Monday, April 16, 2012

Different Kids, Same Mom

A couple of weeks ago I was really struggling with my oldest.  While we have a lot in common, she is still very different from me.  She communicates a lot like her dad – a code I’ve still not cracked.  It’s much easier for me to plow through things with Clare.  Somehow it seems like when the dust settles, we are on the same team.  Not the case with me and Soph.
One night I was overwhelmed with frustration.  I cried myself to sleep, feeling helpless about how I could possibly relate to this child and be the mom she needs me to be.  I want to be a mom of encouragement, not criticism.  I want to be a mom of support, not anger.  I want to know how to speak to my daughter.  Not speechless in the moments that seem to be perfect for... something.

The next morning our mom’s group got together for our Bible Study.  We are reading a book called Mom…and Loving It, because (let’s face it), sometimes we don’t love it.  We opened up the book that morning to the chapter called Being Content with Your Kids.  Sweet.  I recognized immediately that I was in the right place at the right time.  One of the author’s shares about an especially frustrating moment that she was having, which culminated in a perspective-changing revelation:  Since God made this child, and knit her inmost being in the womb, He can give “insight into who she is and what makes her tick.”  He knows her best.  He has a plan for her.  He can guide her mother to understand her better.  I have to believe that this would be his will.  The author began praying “Lord, give me Your eyes to see her the way You do.”  (We should be praying this about all people, shouldn’t we?)

This was effective for this mother and she says something that really caught me then: “I began to accept her for who she was and not so much who I wanted her to be.” We all have hopes and dreams for our children, don’t we?  Visions of their success, their happiness.  Sometimes those are given to us from God; sometimes they are our own. 

I have yet to pray this prayer as regularly as I’d like.  But God is gifting me with a little more clarity on this issue.  My children are so different.  And I know this is a gift and not a curse.  I love how they bring such different perspectives and ideas to the table.  I can’t imagine what great things God has in store for them, where they can use their talents and gifts to glorify him.  (Easy to write this while they are sleeping. J
When Sophie was about Clare’s age, she eloquently shared with her Sunday School teacher her understanding of Easter.  It was beautiful and touching and brought the teacher, and me, to tears.  Yesterday after Sunday School, Clare and I had this conversation:

“What did you learn in Sunday School today?” I asked her as we were lounging around together on my bed.
“About the women who brought something for Jesus.”
“To wash his feet?”
She looked at me like I was crazy.  “No!  Ya know.. the women came to the tune!”
“Oh, to take care of his body!  Right.  The tomb.”
“Yeah.  They came to the tune.  And he wasn’t there!”  She pauses and puts her feet on my headboard. She smiled and said, “They were amazed!”
I smile.  “Yes!  Very cool.  It’s neat that they were given the job to tell people about him not being there!”
“Yeah!  They gave each other high-fives!”
“Really?!”  We laugh together.  I’m sure they did, Babe.  Good call.

Not the insight that Sophie had, but still a great revelation.  Love my kids.

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