Monday, June 20, 2011

Permission to Fail

Sometimes Brad and I sit around and talk about the Bible. What we've read, what we're learning, what God is showing us. Those times are precious. Some of my favorite conversations with him.

Recently, we were talking about the book of Ecclesiastes. We'd both recently read it.

Eugene Peterson describes Ecclesiastes as a bath. It scrubs us clean of the illusion that:
...we can live our lives by ourselves on our own terms.
Once we read Ecclesiastes, we are ready for Jesus.

It certainly was no coincidence that Ecclesiastes had come up more than one time recently.

For the past two weeks we'd been in the throes of transitioning the girls to one nap. I came up with a master plan, and we'd been executing that plan, bwahahaaaaa. Well, mostly, I'd been executing the master plan. Brad has been traveling a lot this month, so I've dealt with two tired, fussy, toddlers on my own.

Tired, fussy toddlers--the product of my master plan.

You see, sometimes I forget to have a chat with Jesus about all of this parenting business. I mean Jesus never had any children with nap schedules. Yikes, right? My arrogant heart needed the "bath" that is Ecclesiastes. My spirit needed to be scrubbed of the idea that I was in control, and that my "master plan" was somehow superior to anything that Jesus could help me out with.

So, on day three of Brad's most recent business trip, I just didn't know what do to. I felt like a fish flopping around on the sandy beach.

What the cuss? I had a master plan? (Have you seen the movie, Fantastic Mr. Fox? If you haven't, you should). Why wasn't my master plan working?

In that miserable, flopping place, that is where I met Jesus. Funny how sometimes I have to get to that point of utter and complete failure and "I-just-don't-know-what-to-do-ness" to realize that Jesus is right there, waiting for me.

So, after talking with Jesus, and having him remind me that, while he didn't actually parent any children while he was here on earth, he did create nap schedules, so I could consider him a reliable source for nap consultation. And, after talking with Brad, we decided that we'd surrender, wave the white flag, and fail.  

Jesus, Brad, me---we all decided we'd go ahead and go back to two naps a day. I've never felt more peace about failure before in my life. It feels good. The girls are back to their happy-toddler selves, and the angst of "I-just-don't-know-what-to-do-ness" is gone.

Sometimes, we just need permission to fail.


Counting my gifts today:

717. Northside Dairy Haven.

718. Nap encouragement from friends.

719. Email from Melissa suggesting that it was okay to go back to two naps a day.

720. Lots of fun outings with the girls!

721. The girls making connections from the things they learn in books to the real world.

722. Gardenin' shoes.

723. The girls' awesome papa!

725. Sunshine.

726. Hydrangeas.

727. Gladiolas

holy experience


Once Upon A Time said...

Good choice on the naps. My two are actually taking two naps today, because they needed it. We're still doing a mix of some days: 1 nap, some days 2. It works for us- but most importantly, it works best for Sam and Anna. You've got to do what works. I'm glad you have happy toddlers again!

Amanda said...

LOVE The Fantastic Mr. Fox reference. I'm glad you're doing what's right for you, and for the girls. We love you. AA

Southern Gal said...

So true. If I didn't have permission to fail I would have given up long ago. Sweet girls. Love hydrangeas, too.

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

SO glad to hear your girls (and you!) have gotten some rest! :) :)

stacey said...

Baby crocs are so cute!

And I would not really call this all a failure - just an adjustment!

(love the picture below the header!)

Have a great week!

Laura said...

My boys are much older now, but I remember when the sun would rise and set on naptime. I'm so glad you brought Jesus into it all :). (He does have a lot of children, you know! And sometimes He tells this old lady still--TAKE A NAP!) Your littles are so precious. How blessed they are to have a mommy who takes a bath in Ecclesiastes!

Leslie said...

we seem to learn such much through our failures! keep the 2 naps as long as possible. Claire kept 2 till she was around 18 months and it was very nice, even if the morning nap was a short one.

B. said...

Your girls are blessed to have such thoughtful parents. I'm all about the schedule(as a fellow twin mama) and I can totally relate to how difficult it must've been with two cranky toddlers.

Amy said...

Good call--on many counts. I do think listening to our children, noticing their needs, is one of the most important things we can do as parents. Glad God does that with me:) Obviously, you did that with your sweeties.
Love hydrangeas--and yours are beautiful. I don't have gladiolas--but your photo makes me want to grow them!

MultipleMum said...

The 'dropping a nap' stage is tricky. I had a few gos at it too. It will happen when they are ready (but it is restrictive isn't it!?) Must see Fantastic Mr Fox! x

Ordinary Girl said...

I thought Bean was trying to tell me she was ready for one nap too, and it was pretty rough. So we failed as well. Some days we do one nap when it seems fitting, but most days we do two and I'm with you, it's nice to have a happy girl again.