Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Seeing Straight

I have been thinking. Thinking about how I haven't had a very good attitude about this time of sleep deprivation. I am not that unique, in being sleep deprived. Tons of people are in this position. Just because I am lacking in sleep, doesn't mean I can be grumpy. It certainly doesn't mean I can be short or snappy with my daughter. And yet, I have been... I've been tremendously impatient with my baby, when he cries inconsolably in the middle of the night.

Many things made me start thinking about this needed attitude adjustment.
My baby - finding out that he had an ear infection, and is most likely in pain. He needs his Mom to be understanding, not frustrated.

My mom - the mother of 10 children, grandmother of 4, homeschool teacher of 4 kids and much more (she has a lot going on. You know - she's busy.) Anyway. This lady came over to spend the night here last week, to rock Peyton to sleep, so all I had to do all night was feed him. She gave me a night off.
My friend - a mother of 6 young children, pregnant with #7, preparing for a move across the country... She brought us dinner last week, and is willing to bring it again. (And she lives 1/2 hour away, too.)
When other folks serve me so willing - folks who could easily say they have too much going on in their own life... that is convicting. I need to change my attitude....

This post on Femina. Hmmmm... She speaks directly to me. I need to clean up my windshield, get a change of perspective, so I can see clearly. I need to count my blessings, and repent from feeling sorry for myself.

You know what? Life is a lot better, when you are seeing straight.
You CAN see straight, even when you don't get sleep. You CAN be joyful, too. Those things come from God. Not from sufficient rest.
Somehow, with the change of perspective, I already feel more rested. It seems like Peyton is sleeping better. Maybe there is validity to the theory of newborns feeling the tension & stress in their parents & then getting more stressed & fussy themselves. I don't know.

13 comments:

raya said...

Erin I am right there with you on the sleep deprivation. Except I don't have another child to look after during the day so I probably have it a bit easier. Thanks for this post - it was a good reminder and refreshing for me to read that someone else is dealing with the same things I am right at this moment. Can't wait to meet Peyton and let me know the first time he sleeps through the night - we will celebrate!

Stef said...

Loved this post, Erin! My kids have been sick all week and getting up at least every hour during the night. You'd think they'd coordinate their waking up and do it together... no... it must be at all different times. :)
I'm finding it hard to roll out of bed in the morning AND with a smile on my face. So this post came at a good time for me.
Its good that we stop and "see straight" otherwise I'm afraid the not seeing straight leads some women into depression and naval gazing, as our Pastor puts it. :)

jj said...

You are so very not alone. I start short-fusing pre-partum, month 6 and I keep at it for a good 3 months post. Not to be proud of it, just to let you know I hear you on how difficult it is. We'll keep praying for rest and the discipline to maintain joy.
Jamey

Melissa said...

I find myself already struggling with sleepless nights & nervous about how I'll handle it in another ten weeks... so I think I'll print out your post and keep it in my bedside drawer. Aaaaand I'll start praying for double doses of joy & grace *right now*!! :)
May God grant us all the patience to see clearly through His lens. Praise God for the psalms!

laura g said...

Erin, I am right there with you. And I only have one! I for one though definitely think that newborns and kids pick up and mirror their kids attitudes. With Jenna I notice that the less patient I am with her, the less patience she has with me. She gets more agitated and demanding and fussy when I let my PMS or stress or just plain old rotten attitude show too much. These kids are smart, they know what's up.

I also think they're God's little sanctification tools for parents. Nothing like a little step back from a screaming infant to realize how much we need to depend on the Lord for our strength.
I'll be praying for you guys!

Erin said...

Thanks all for the encouragement & feedback!
Raya - we'll see you next week, when you are up!
Melissa - only 10 weeks! Wow!!

Krista said...

Hey Erin, yes this is a very good reminder. I struggled with this SO much when Elijah was waking up every hour at night for a few months. When I got really frustrated Nick had to gently remind me that Elijah needed me for something and that God would give me all I needed to make it through the day with patience. The days when I was really frustrated turned out to the the days when I ended up finding out he was sick or something. Makes you feel pretty bad for losing your temper, especially with a baby who can't communicate very well. I couldn't believe how many times I slipped into that trap. Still do. :) But, we'll all just keep encouraging and praying for one another! God gives us everything we need.

Lettner Family said...

Erin, thanks for being honest in this post. I think you are amazing, and while I haven't been in your house with you and the kids, there is no DOUBT in my mind that you are doing anything BUT a fantastic job! The fact that you realize you are being short with Gillian, and easily frustrated with Peyton is HUGE. Thank the Lord that our kids are so forgiving of us when we need it! They can cry one second and the next second give you a smile that melts it all away!

You are blessed to have two healthy kids, and a fantastic family and friend circle! Hang in there...remember that you had little sleep when Gillian was a teeny munch too and you made it through! PLEASE let me know if I can do anything for you! You are an inspiration!

Erin said...

Nini - I thought of something you could do, how about you & you cutie come over to play?!

Stef said...

I found after each baby of mine, that being around other moms and just out in public really helped me, personally. Getting back to my Bible studies, play groups, family time, etc... its all good. :)

Deanna said...

I can really relate too. Little Mikey is 2 and I still get up with him almost every night. Thank you for your honest post and I'm so happy that you have family and friends around to help you. That's such a huge blessing! Deanna

Lettner Family said...

Erin, thanks for being honest in this post. I think you are amazing, and while I haven't been in your house with you and the kids, there is no DOUBT in my mind that you are doing anything BUT a fantastic job! The fact that you realize you are being short with Gillian, and easily frustrated with Peyton is HUGE. Thank the Lord that our kids are so forgiving of us when we need it! They can cry one second and the next second give you a smile that melts it all away!

You are blessed to have two healthy kids, and a fantastic family and friend circle! Hang in there...remember that you had little sleep when Gillian was a teeny munch too and you made it through! PLEASE let me know if I can do anything for you! You are an inspiration!

Deanna said...

I can really relate too. Little Mikey is 2 and I still get up with him almost every night. Thank you for your honest post and I'm so happy that you have family and friends around to help you. That's such a huge blessing! Deanna