Tears. Screaming. Anxious grunting. Random outbursts of high pitch shouting. That sums up my last couple days with Caleb. Poor little guy is teething and the pain is really getting to him. When you’re stuck in the middle of a stage like this it’s really hard to see beyond in the moment.
One thing I’ve learned over the last seven and a half months is that everything comes in stages. First there is the newborn/no sleep/survival mode stage. Then for us there came a brief of time of peace. Shortly after the “peaceful” stage we entered into torticollis, where Caleb had to go to physiotherapy once or twice a week because his neck wasn’t moving well in one direction and he was developing a large flat spot on one side of his head. I felt like my entire day revolved around his exercises, positioning and carrying in various holds. Then we went through a stage where he wasn’t eating well and began to lose weight. Around the same time we felt like God told us to sell our house and I was dealing with cleaning, staging, showing and preparing our house for a move in the midst of all the other issues. And now we’re in a stage of severe teething pain combined with him discovering the volume of his voice.
There is one thing in common with every single stage I just listed. We made it through each one alive.
I smile already when I think back on each of those times. Each one holds special memories. Some of those times were so hard. I cried so much when we were trying to make the decision about whether we’d go to Calgary for treatment on Caleb’s head (in the end God healed him of that and his head is almost completely back to normal shape)! Seeing my baby not eating made me so frustrated with myself, but deepened my love and passion for Caleb. Selling our house was a big test, and in the end God told us last-minute when someone was interested in buying it, that he was testing our obedience. I was so thankful to not have to pack up our home!
Tonight as I somewhat dread what tomorrow might hold in terms of the screaming, crying and fussiness, I remind myself that it’s just a stage. We’ll get through this and one day fondly recount when Caleb’s first tooth poked through. I’ll hear his grown up voice and become emotional inside as I think of the tiny baby voice he once had that cried out for my attention.
Some stages seem longer, like staying home in the evenings because Caleb’s bedtime is firmly established (and detrimental to his sleeping pattern if it gets interrupted), but I choose to celebrate the fact that my baby sleeps well. He may need to go to bed at 7 p.m. but he sleep all the way through the night and I am in a wonderful stage of getting much-needed rest again.
The Lord is good. Psalm 145:8-9 reminds me of this.
The Lord is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. The Lord is good to everyone. He showers compassion on all his creation.
May Jesus be your strength and portion through every difficult stage or trial that you face. May you feel him showering compassion upon you and may you find rest in his mercy.