Wednesday, April 3, 2013

i'm gonna be real honest here.

today i had a moment that broke me.
it all started when miles asked for cookies at 9 in the morning.
i said no. and he started begging.
and in my mind, i thought, "i am tired & need more caffeine & if i gave him the cookie, this could be over real fast."
but in my heart, i knew that was not the solution.
in my heart, i knew that miles could not have cookies at 9 in the morning no matter what argument followed.
and not because cookies are necessarily bad at 9am, but because i said so.
and i was going to stick to no as an answer.

what followed was not just an ordinary tantrum.
i mean, i get it. i've totally been disappointed myself when i can't have cookies at 9am.
but it escalated fast & i knew that i had to continue to stick to my word.
it was also very clear to me that miles understood every single word that came out of my mouth this time.
and the excuse that i sometimes give him of "well he is so little, he must not understand" no longer worked in this situation. he knew exactly what he was saying and doing.

after several consequences & a lot of reasoning, and even a few punches to my face, my soul was exhausted.
i needed a break. i needed to breathe. i needed to catch my step.
and he wasn't giving up. it wasn't about the cookies anymore. it was now just anger & rage.
so i quietly told him that he would have to stay in his room until he was able to look at mommy's eyes and say he was sorry with a happy heart.
and he shouted "NO." so i left him in his room.

my heart was breaking the entire time.
i just wanted my baby to tell me he was sorry.
and i went back again. asked him to apologize. he shouted NO every time.
i have no idea how it got so out of control. one minute i was texting a friend that things were starting to get easier, and the next minute things were so crazy and tears would not stop flowing down my cheeks.
every time i went back to check on him to see if he was ready to apologize, my heart would break a little bit more at the word NO.

and then it got quiet. a different kind of quiet. the kind of quiet that every mom knows.
something was going on in that room that shouldn't be going on.
so in i went to check, and sure enough he had disobeyed - big time.
the actions aren't important here. but what followed was.
i looked at his scared little face. i was firm in my response. that his choice was NOT okay.
i was ready for another tantrum. i was ready for another half hour of exhaustion.
but instead i got a trembling lip. and sad little eyes. and a little boy, two months shy of 3, ready to collapse in his mommy's arms.

i looked down at him & got to his level. and hugged him. and held him.
and instead of flailing, he actually looked in my eyes and said, "i'm so sorry, mommy."
and he continually said it while i held him. this has never happened before.
he has never chosen to say he is sorry to me on his own. it has been a learning process.
and today he did it. over and over. and i felt his grief over his choices as i was holding him.
i know he knew what he had done and i know he knew how much i hurt over it.

and while i was sitting there holding my sobbing little boy, grief & understanding washed over my own heart.
this is me. this is who i am, too. 
i am stubborn & prideful when it comes to the Lord.
i hear him calling me out on things. big sins, little sins, choices, decisions, situations.
i often am prompted by him. and more often than not, i ignore. and lots of times, i scream, NO.
and sometimes, in my own ways, i even flail. i probably don't punch him in the face, but you just never know with me.

and usually, it gets to the point where i am exhausted.
where fighting him has just knocked the wind out of me.
and i have to pick myself off of the floor & look up at him with puffy eyes and a tear-streaked face,
and just say, "i'm SO sorry, Lord" over and over again.
because most of the time that's all i have left in me. just like miles today.
and the good news is - the BEST news is - that he picks me up. and holds me.
and He knows when i need it.

i will still say no to cookies at 9am. and there will still be raging tantrums.
and i'm sure even today there will be more consequences for disobedience.
but something in me has changed today. something in me was so broken in those moments.
i hope i remember them. and i hope i'm a different mom because of them.


  1. Beautifully said! I learn SO much about my own heart through parenting. It has radically impacted my relationship with the Lord -in the absolute best way. (And good for you for sticking to your guns at 9am. It's soooo hard to do sometimes.)

  2. What a beautiful post!! It's so amazing what God teaches us about Him through the different relationships in our lives. Stay strong, Mama. You are doing a wonderful job, even if it is really hard.

  3. i love this post...all of it.

    my oldest (and hardest) is 12. the past 5 months have been the absolute worst for our family in regards to his behavior and we are faced with some very serious and stark realities of what may happen to our family and reading this brings be back to when he was young and how i feel that i missed out on some great moments to teach about obedience before it was too late. stay strong, it feels hard when they are small to stick with it day after day, but it's better than ending up where i am now. it's a sick place to be as a parent and it just looks like it's going to be so much worse before anything will change.

    hang in there. i can see you are strong. ;-)

  4. Wow. That was so so powerful. Thank you for sharing such a vulnerable moment.

  5. Beautiful, Katy. Simply so. xoxo

  6. Tears. Man have I been there...with God and my kids. Such a powerful lesson. Thanks Katy (and Miles).

  7. an older friend told me about parenting one time: you have to win. its so darn hard sometimes...but you do. you didn't fold and you stuck to your guns. yes, it will probably happen again, but you did it. good work, mama. you're molding little people. its not an easy thing.


  8. and this is why you are one of my favorites. i love your raw honesty. i have totally been there...a lot lately. and i totally relate to being stubborn and prideful, just like my sweet boy can be some days. i have been praying for a heart-change in motherhood the past couple of weeks and this right here is just a little answer to that prayer. thank you! hang in there, mama!

  9. Thank you for being so open and honest about this. I needed it.

  10. Wonderful post. I have one very stubborn at home times it is very hard but I have learned so much from her these past 5 years and myself.

  11. katy this made me really truly cry. thanks for sharing it friend.

  12. such a lovely post. i, too, have an almost 3 year old...i feel your pain. hang in there!

  13. Wow. I feel like I need to save this and reread this a lot. Brokenness is the only way. Always.

  14. dude. keepin it real. this mothering thing aint for the weak at heart. xoxo

  15. I just found your blog a minute ago via Pintertest Kitchens. Amazing. This post is exactly what I needed to read. Thanks so much for sharing!

  16. Oh my gosh babe, this is just a beautiful writing. Thank you for taking the time to write this. I love you and your sensitive spirit. ~Your Mama

  17. Babe, this is beautifully written. Thank you so much for having such a sensitive spirit and taking the time to bless me today. ~Your mama

  18. dang. so good. love you friend!

  19. i mean, i don't really get it, because i'm not a mom.
    but i completely get it, because i'm a stubborn child of God.

    thank you for loving your child unconditionally, and sharing that with us.
    i need that reminder that God loves me unconditionally.
    and that he really DOES know what is best.


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