Levi developed a plan recently that serves zero purpose to either of us:
A 45-minute morning nap.
I really try to make it a discipline to do my quiet time/work on my Bible study as soon as he goes down for the morning. No. Matter. What. I need at least an hour so I can do that AND get some housework done, take a shower, or whatever.
But this 45 minute nonsense doesn't exactly work wonders for me. Mama needs an hour.
Levi wasn't pleased with my method to reinforce this today. But I can tell from the moment my baby gets up if his nap was as much as he needed, or if he simply woke up in the middle of a sleep cycle and thought it was simply time to get up. I knew that if I went into his room his eyes would be glazed and nearly rolling into the back of his head, but he would be just certain it was time to get up. And then he'd be crabby for the next few hours, I would be frustrated, and then he'd be so overtired that his afternoon nap would go similarly. And then the terrible attitude would roll into dinnertime.
So I let him stay in his bed. I know he was mad. I knew the exact moments that he flung his giraffe and three pacifiers over the railing so he'd have something about which to be even MORE mad. After fifteen minutes, I went in and collected his things, gave them back, saw the glazed and rolling eyes, and told him he needed more sleep and laid him back down.
Then, he was REALLY mad.
And then he....fell asleep.
When Levi turned one a week ago, I swear a toddler-tantrum switch was flicked onto "on" and I am desperately looking for the "reset" button...to no avail. Life is frustrating for him right now - he can't talk, is on the verge of walking, and is cutting six teeth. So you can't communicate (yes, I do signs with him but it's slow in being reciprocated), can't move like you want, and are in pain. Honestly, I'd be mad too.
Galatians 6:9 has become my big-cheese verse lately. I think it'll be my life verse for the next two decades:
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
I can't tell you how many times a day now that I have to tell this to myself. It's so much easier to give in and give him the food off my plate, to get him up even though I know he needs more sleep, to pick him up and carry him with me e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e to avoid the whining. But I will reap later what I sow even now. If I'm in the habit of giving in now, I'll continue that habit. I can't take the easy road.
*Now please don't think I'm a tyrant mom. I do feel like one sometimes! But it's not like I expect him to behave like a five-year-old boy. We just try to keep boundaries and structure in our home. But there are some days when you just have to let the house blow up around you because a little boy just needs to be cuddled and comforted and rocked and read to.
But how much does that verse just apply anywhere in life? In trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, hitting recurring issues head-on, working on a marriage relationship, parenting....
...don't become weary of doing the right thing. Because you WILL reap a harvest. Don't. Grow. Weary.