Monday, April 8, 2013

When You Wish God Didn't Trust You Quite So Much...

there are parts of every one's lives that we like to keep quiet.
those deep seated fears, failures, and flops.
you know, the "f" words.
over the years I have tried to break out of my fear of talking about the one thing I fear judgement from more than all others,
and that's my strong-willed child.
people who do not have a strong willed child like to voice advice, and while I can appreciate their heart,
they might as well stick my head in a gas oven for all the good their advice will do me.
James Dobson says to a mom of a strong willed child ,
 "There are some families with 4 or 6 kids, and none of them have a defiant temperament like we are describing.  Such moms and dads are inclined to assume that parents who struggle to maintain control at home are just weak or ineffective.  Sometimes that is an accurate assessment, but in other cases, the difficulties result from the nature of that particular child.   Help people grasp how difficult it can be to raise a defiant youngster.  Your daughter didn't simply disobey occasionally, every child does that.  You were in a war of wills with {her} from almost the very earliest moments of life."
-The New Strong-Willed Child, By Dr. Dobson, page 15.
While I know and realize I have made many mistakes in raising my children, God is really dragging bringing me to a place of accepting that this child's strong will is not the result of my parenting style or inadequacies.
This child is a result of how his Creator formed him, with a purpose and a plan, a sin nature thrown in.
I could tell from the first moments of life that this child was...spunky.
He was born on the 4th of July and his name appropropriately means "little fire".
the signs were all there. ;).
I remember calling my mom at about 9 days old at midnight or so crying, "I thought babies slept?" 
no, not my child.
he never slept unless in my arms.
and by never, i mean never.
naps during the day?
awake all night nursing every hour or two?
bottle, paci, blankie, anything that pacified him?
no again.
only mama.
when he was about 9 months old I developed an excruciating breast infection that left me in tears with each feeding. {I never cried during labor if that gives you a clue to my pain tolerance}.
While he was old enough to wean, he was so 'uncomforted' by anything else, I pushed through 2 or 3 of the most painful weeks ever.
I nursed him til he was two and I became pregnant with my next child.
He went through awful night terrors from 2-3 yrs old.
I believe he slept through the night at 4 YEARS for the first time.
Spankings resulted in him 'yelling' at me.
Time outs required my restraining him to keep him down.
When he was 4 I turned my back while he was on time out and he ran out the front door and into the street.
And I couldn't catch him!
He ran!
I called my husband panicking that this kid truly would escape our cul-de-sac.
We did what the 'books' said.
I read the Christian parenting books by the box.
Nothing worked for my little rebel.
The harder I tried to reign him in, the harder the kid would push.
At one point I thought we had solved it.
We had changed time out to a 'quiet time' in his own room where he could just 'chill' til his timer rang.
It struck me as odd that the time of peace flew by, but hey, it was working.
Until I realized it was getting shorter and shorter.
It wasn't my imagination.
So I secretly stuck my head  in a crack of his door one day.
I saw my 3 or 4 yr old child piling his stuff, moving his bed  to reach up to the high shelf I had placed the timer on, only to reduce the time down!  He then moved everything back to where it belonged and came out with a smile and announced his time out was up!
This is what I was up against, and the next years would hold even more challenges.
My son is now 11.
Life is a battle everyday with him.
But I am determined to share my story for other young moms with similar children feeling like they are failing.
This is hard for me to share, to express the vulnerability here.
I am determined to walk this out with Jesus, trusting that this road is leading to life abundantly for this boy.
Most days I fall into bed battle worn and weary.
I wonder what moms of compliant children feel like and want to puke a little.
I am everyday laying this before the Lord,
trusting in His perfect will.
I know that the reason God gave him such a tough spirit is because it will serve a greater purpose,
and I will share a little more as we travel this tough road of raising a defiant child.
I will be doing  part 2 in When You Wish God Didn't Trust You So Much: Raising a Defiant Child soon.
 If you have a defiant child, I would love to read your story as well!  Please share!

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