It's 7:30am, I'm barely conscious and both the girls are screaming at me.
Puuddy has just found out that she isn't getting her favorite toys back due to yesterday's behavior. Avaberry is hungry but is refusing to nurse. I want to cry (or scream), I'm so tired.
As I am learning, every pregnancy and every child is different. Even though I seem to remember breastfeeding being a breeze with Puuddy, I had some difficulty in the beginning with Avaberry. I love breastfeeding and enjoy it immensely, so that was rather tough to deal with emotionally. Flash forward to this morning when she refused to nurse. I quickly figured out that she wanted her pacifier instead. What?! It had been five hours since she'd eaten. FIVE HOURS. Usually after three she's ready to eat my face. I had to fight off the anxiety so I could focus. Immediately I hear my mother's voice in my head:
"Children will never starve themselves."
Ok, phew. Don't panic. It's been five hours since she's eaten but she's gotta eat eventually...right?!
I lay Avaberry down on the bed. She continues to cry and yell at me, but I calmly explain to her (as if she can understand) that I am not going to give her the paci because she needs to eat.
I glance over at Puuddy who has a concerned look on her face. I'm sure she's thinking, "Does Mommy really know what she's doing...?" Yes, I do. Well, kind of. After all, you don't get a playbook when you become a parent. But as believers God gives us the grace we desperately need to obey the Holy Spirit's direction so our actions honor Christ who lives in us.
So how did I apply this to my chaotic situation this morning?
Instead of screaming back at Puuddy to get her to stop screaming (sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? but honestly sometimes that's how I react when I'm emotional and exhausted), I focused on diffusing one situation at a time. There wasn't much I could do for Avaberry except rub her tummy and talk to her in calm tones. I knew I'd have to give her a few minutes to realize she needed to eat. In the meantime I asked Puuddy if she wanted to help me pump (she loves turning the pump on and off). This redirected her attention and instantly turned her attitude around. I finished pumping, put Ava on and she began to nurse right away. Sigh of relief.
Later that morning I was able to laugh about our early morning shenanigans as I shared the story with Hubby over the phone. I'd successfully handled a stressful situation without losing my temper (or my mind, for that matter) and that doesn't happen all the time. I'll be the first to tell you that I am a work in progress, especially when it comes to parenting. But thanks be to God I don't have to do it on my own. He is with me every step of the way, guiding me with His love and reassuring me with His grace.
For His Glory,