Monday, August 13, 2012



A funny and strange new phenomenon is occurring in my house regularly.  I am sure parents of other sibling sets of a certain age will easily recognize this.  Lily is very concerned with how I parent Bella.  In the car, Bella has started screaming for no reason.  Since this now has consequences in our family, because really, who wants their children to scream in the car for no reason, Lily is quick to tell me when Bella is screaming, as if I can't hear it.

This is usually how it goes down.

Bella:  lots of SCREAMING
me:  Bella, you need to stop screaming.  If you scream again, ______ will happen when we stop.  (I try to mix up consequences, but so far, nothing is really working well.)
Bella: one little scream, testing the limits of what I mean when I say "screaming"
Lily:  Bella, you need to calm down.  Everything is okay.  No screaming.
Bella: Yelling, not screaming.  But then punctuated by a little tiny scream.
Lily:  Bella is screaming.  Mom!  Bella screamed again!
me:  I heard it.
Lily:  You need to stop Bella screaming.
me:  I will do something, but right now I am driving the car, so I can't.
Lily:  You are not doing anything!  I do not want to hear more screaming!
(the irony in this statement is worth noting, but not to Lily, on whom irony is lost)
Bella: another testing scream

Usually at this point, I am wishing that we were at our destination or that we had never gotten out of bed.

This scenario plays itself out in many different ways at home, in the car and out in public.  Lucky us.  Lily is fixated on Bella getting what she deserves.  I am usually fixated on figuring out what could possibly work to induce appropriate behavior from both of my children.  Bella is currently fixated on getting exactly whatever crazy thing she wants in that moment and is usually willing to stop at nothing to make that happen.  In this intense stage, I have sometimes found myself wondering if we are absolutely nuts to be trying to add two more children to our family.

The answer is yes, but that is what God is calling us to, so we will have to make the best of it and know that God will be sanctifying us through it.

In all of this sister justice, I've seen that I do this with people around me and their stories.  I look and think they are getting it wrong, and God is not really dealing with it as I would.  Or that he is not working in their hearts.  Why do I ever think I know better?  I certainly don't, just like Lily doesn't.  We can see only a tiny bit of others' lives, and I can not make sense of what I can see.  Something I am working on is to speculate less and pray more.  Because, ultimately, my speculation and questions do nothing to help.  Prayer does.

And, I certainly have plenty to deal with in my own heart and life before the Lord.  Just ask Lily - she thinks I am not doing anything.



Morgan Smith said...

oh i feel ya. those pictures of them at the table are BEAUTIFUL!!!