I’ve never been abandoned

My daughter has slept well from the beginning of her life.  Of course she’d wake up in the early days to eat a time or two at night, but she has always been good at putting herself to sleep.  From the second month or so on, she’d fall asleep best on her own rather than with us holding her.  Sometimes she’d talk herself to sleep, but nothing dramatic.

Then came this week.  She will be seven months old on Sunday.  I’m not sure if she’s more aware of being alone or if she’s teething, but she screams bloody murder when we lay her down at night.  She does fine with naps.  So, after two nights of trying to console her and only making it worse, last night I knew that I needed to just leave her be.  I decided to give it 15 minutes.

We put her down.  The screaming started.  My husband closed her door so she wouldn’t hear us, but we could sure hear her.  I sat in the hallway.  I just couldn’t bring myself to go to the living room and watch television or something.  I shed some of my own tears as my heart broke for my baby girl crying so hard.  I prayed for her.  I prayed for me.  I asked God to comfort her as He could since I couldn’t.  I asked Him to give me strength and guidance to do and know what is best for her.

Within 10 minutes, she settled down and was fast asleep.  I was relieved.  My husband, who had been online looking for solutions, was relieved.  Then I started thinking.  I had worried that she felt abandoned by us.  I knew this was one of those times where she would never understand that as much as she was hurting, I was hurting for her even more.  That’s part of parenthood.

Then I realized that must be how it is for God sometimes.  I have had times where I felt like He abandoned me or wasn’t doing what I thought made since for Him to do.   Dealing with my daughter made me realize that He has never left me, just like I would never leave her.  He sat in the hallway and cried with me and for me.  His Son prayed for me.  They never forgot me or left me alone, but They knew that I needed to go through those difficult times to come out better and stronger in the end.  Just like I know my daughter will realize that she can fall asleep and all will be well, so have They known that I had to cry my tears and go through trials to come up stronger with even greater faith.

I am thankful that I have a God who will never abandon me.  I’m thankful, too, that I have a God who will help me to grow through hard times even when it breaks His own heart to do so just because it’s what is best for me.

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