i can see his faithfulness
last friday i had a great morning at erwin's orchard with bina and some friends of mine from high school. bina showed her fiercely independent side, walking far away from the anchor of mom. i kept having to go grab her and bring her back to where we were camped out, and then watch her as she wandered off again and again.
i love her curiosity and independence. i only wish she would be independent when i need her to be. ha. like when i need to drop her off at childcare for church or one of our activities during the week. but alas, she becomes a little mama magnet at those times, clinging and crying and screaming. oh bina.
when we got home from the orchard, bina decided to boycott nap. i let her have it out (talking, yelling, screaming) for about an hour as i prepared dinner. and then i got in total bummer mode and let myself downward spiral. my thoughts overcame me and took away the joy of the morning. i started bumming about all sorts of things, like david leaving so early in the morning, bina not lasting in childcare at church or mops, missing my job, etc. etc. i started thinking maybe we needed to look for a mega church or something that could handle bina and her theatrics so i wouldn't be called back every sunday. i started thinking about how free i was before bina. i felt disillusioned with motherhood yet again. i let myself get totally unsettled about all sorts of things in life. and then i felt a check in my spirit. stop that, brittain.
and then my thought process changed. i reached out to a friend from church who had struggled with depression and being disillusioned with motherhood after her first as well. messaging with her reminded me of god's faithfulness in so many ways since we moved. how he connected us on our first sunday at church with a small group, something that i had so desired. we met with the group that sunday night as it was the last group meeting before summer break. how convenient that we made it just in time! of course, that was god. at that meeting i met the friend i reached out to who has experienced similar struggles as me. she invited me to visit her mops group this summer and i attended the once a month summer play dates. i really enjoyed meeting the other moms. they were all women who i would like to be friends with.
when bible study fellowship (bsf) began two weeks ago, i had no idea how big of a thing it was. i had heard good things about it from other moms and from my own mom. i was still struggling with anxiety and insomnia and was expecting a small bible study group. it turned out to be a massive event with 500+ women. when i first got there i was thinking oh no no no no no. as i sat in the newcomers section, i looked around and noticed a mom from the mops group who came over to greet another mom from the mops group who happened to be sitting behind me. the two of us newcomers stuck together for the rest of the time. i felt more at ease because i knew two other people there, even if not well. attending the newcomers breakout session solidified my decision to continue with bsf. two of the women who had been attending for some time shared how bsf ministered to them and changed their lives. it led them closer to god and to a community of believers that shared their burdens with them. i realized that this is exactly what i needed. and then it turned out that the mops mom that had been attending previously was in my small group! it's so nice to have that connection, and i wouldn't have had it had we not visited church that sunday, got connected to a small group, and met the mom who invited me to visit her mops group over summer. look at god. paving the way. knowing i needed a little confidence to keep going.
our bsf group leader invited us all to a fellowship at her home following the second bsf meeting (last week). i was a little worried about how bina would do. and then how i would be perceived because of her behavior. darn you, control idol. as i was describing bina to my group leader over text, she responded saying that she sounded like one of her daughters when she was little. that really ministered to me. it's exactly what i needed to hear to put down my guard. i'm not alone! i'm not being judged. we're in this together. bina didn't last in the childcare arrangement at the fellowship, but she did eat lunch quietly in my lap while the group talked. and she made it through two hours of childcare at bsf before that. major win!
so even though it's hard. even though things don't always work out the way i would like (bina not lasting in mops childcare or the nursery at church), god has got this. we attended a newcomers lunch for our church on sunday. bina did alright considering she skipped nap. it was so good to hear about the background of the church and to be reminded again that it's a baby church. they've been a church plant for two years and they're doing amazing, hitting all of their milestones to be a thriving church that will continue to reproduce in the future. growth is amazing, but growing pains are hard! i'm thankful we're here near the beginning to see all that god does. they're doing the best they can, and god is working. i need to chill out about childcare and bina lasting or not lasting. she will get there eventually! same for mops. it does no good to get all worked up and frustrated. god knows. i need to surrender this to him and focus on building community, with or without my little attached to my hip.
god has also shown me how fun bina can be and how much i enjoy her. yesterday we were playing with her crayons and she was taking them all out of their little cup and then putting them all back in. we have three different kinds and she was playing with all three, one cup at a time. as i was sitting with her she turned to me and suddenly realized i had a headband on. she grabbed it with both hands and pulled it down around my neck, then back up to my forehead. this repeated several times. then she would go back to her crayons. and then back to my headband, her little face so close to mine. her big blue eyes looking at that headband and she pulled it down and lifted it back up over and over. she'd sit in my lap and play with it some more. and then wrap her little arms around my neck and hug me. oh my bina bina. how i love her.
of course that afternoon she woke up all fussy fuss from nap. and i didn't have a good attitude about it. but we made it. and today i'm reminded of our sweet morning time and how i want to have more time like that with her, with her getting my undivided attention and just enjoying being together doing whatever we are doing. enjoying this season. because my little little is getting bigger every day. and she won't always need me to do everything. but she does now.
so next time i start spiraling (it will happen again because i am a broken human being), i hope that i can catch myself faster and remind myself of all the ways that god has been faithful. and not just in the last four months, but over my life. how easily we forget his faithfulness when things get hard. when we are uncomfortable. when we feel alone and lost. but our feelings make him no less faithful. even when we are faithless, he is faithful. he created me. he formed me. he formed my personality. he knows why he made me the way i am. my job is to draw near to him. to live each day drawing close to him. as i do so, i will understand him more and understand myself more. and i hope that as i do this, i will draw others to him too.
i can see his faithfulness. i can see it every single day. the good ones, and the bad ones. i just have to look.