I sat next to her the other night on the couch as we listened to Kasen crying in his crib. We were attempting the let him “cry it out” which is a method for teaching children how to sleep through the night. It’s a tough thing to do. You basically just let them cry until they realize that they’ve gotta go to sleep on their own. Anyway, Miranda was in tears. It took everything she had to force herself to stay in the living room with me. As she cried, it was hard to understand her words through the tears, but she mumbled “I’m his mother. I’m supposed to love and care for him.” I tried to comfort her saying that she was loving and caring for him by helping him learn how to go to sleep on his own. I’m not sure my words were very comforting, but I think it’s true. This is probably just the first of many times where our love for him will put us in a position where we’ll have to act against our own desires. Ultimately, Miranda held off and after the second night, Kasen slept through the night completely by himself. He’s now made it three nights that way. It’s a pretty amazing thing. Miranda and I both know it’s a good thing, but I feel pretty confident that when she wakes up in the middle of the night, she wants to check in on him – you know, to make sure he’s still breathing and is okay. How do I know that? ‘Cause that’s exactly what I wanna do, and I know she’s a much better parent than I could ever dream of being.
As a single youth minister, that whole “tough love” thing sounded a much easier than what we experienced together the other night. This is probably only the beginning though. Anyway, all this is to say that we’re both realizing that parenting is tough, but I can see clearly that Miranda is tougher. God has truly blessed us by giving her to Kasen and I. Voddie Bachaum defines love as “an act of the will accompanied by
emotion on behalf of it’s recipient.” That’s exactly what she did the
other night. She chose to do what was best for him in spite of her
emotions. Kasen will grow up knowing that he is loved beyond measure, and he’ll also be shown a beautiful example in his mother. She loves with all she has, and will sacrifice her own desires to do what’s best for him. Even when it hurts her, she will choose to love him.