Wednesday, January 9, 2008

A Parenting First

This morning I heard Lily crying and fussing so I ran to her room to see what was the matter. Poor thing! She was visibly in pain and though half asleep kept saying "my arm is hard"..."it's not moving"...huh? Thankfully I had been up working already, so it didn't take me long to realize that her arm must have fallen asleep. It never dawned on me that in three years she had never experienced this weird and sometimes painful sensation! I explained to her that her arm must have fallen asleep and she was definitely confused by that! I felt so bad for her because there really wasn't anything I could do for her until the circulation got going again. Thankfully soon enough the pain had passed and I was able to convince her that was was still the middle of the night (it was 6:30 am) and that she needed to go back to bed.

I really hate that helpless feeling when it comes to my kids. It reminded me of this summer when Lily was trying to quit sucking her thumb. This child was a huge thumb sucker...if one got blistered, she would just switch to the was awful...and definitely not a habit I felt like tackling with a 2 week old baby, potty training her and moving her to a "big girl" bed! But, the dentist had other plans. When we went in for her first appointment we were thankful that the thumb hadn't done any real damage yet, but we definitely got the low down on the necessity of her kicking the habit. The dentist, who we absolutely love, told her that if she sucked her thumb it would ruin her new princess teeth. Something about those words resonated with Lily and she became terribly conscious about putting her thumb in her mouth from that point! We were so excited! Throughout the morning if she accidentally put it in her mouth for a moment, she'd come running over to us asking us to check if her princess teeth were still there. It was so sad and precious at the same time. Then nap time came and neither Jerry nor I were sure of how it would go...she always fell asleep sucking her thumb! We laid her in bed and reminded her about her pretty princess teeth. Then we went downstairs and listened through the monitor as she whimpered and cried. We finally went up there to encourage her and found her laying with her arms behind her back! She was trying so desperately not to suck her thumb that she was holding them underneath her! It was heartbreaking. She had slipped up bit, but after reassuring her that her princess teeth were still there, she was up for the challenge again. We returned to the downstairs couch and weeped and prayed for our little girl! It was so hard to see her struggle like that. She pretty much cried herself to sleep that day, but was later so proud of her princess teeth...she even started those big toothy smiles to show them off. It was a real challenge for her and we hated seeing her struggle with it.

We are such softies! I realize these are such minor things! I guess we just love them so much and are really just learning for the first time that they will have pain and challenges to face that we can't keep them from. I take comfort in knowing no matter how trivial a trial may seem that we can carry it to God in prayer...and as our kids grow and the trials have more consequence, we can again approach Him in prayer...because He, as the ultimate Father, saw His Son face unspeakable trials and pain and even allowed Him to die...for us, FOR US!! Amazing!

On a lighter note: Thumb or no thumb, I love this pic of my Raggedy Lily!

And, it looks like we've got another one with a habit to break!

Well, they do come by it naturally! Ahem, not from my side of the family though!!!


Anonymous said...

You guys sure are doing a great job parenting your precious girls! Keep up the good work.

Cunningham Family said...

my reply to your comment:

yes - he'll have to wear pink sleepers! j/k!! my friend gave us a TON of sleepers!! i guess i should have been more specific :)

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