I had to physically restrain my compassionate, passionate, tender-hearted (and deceivingly strong) daughter twice. She didn't like the dentist yesterday. She'll have to be sedated for a routine cleaning after today.
I had to listen to that same precious girl scream, "I hate you!!!" to several people, including myself, who were just doing what's best for her. That's never even come close to coming out of her mouth before today. I just wanted to go back in there and tell them, "That's not my Anna. She's never said those kinds of things, ever! She's the sweetest little girl you'll ever meet."
I had to deal with her anger and disrespect for the better part of the day. And quite frankly, a part of me couldn't blame her. But the other part was horrified at what I saw my daughter turning into-a hardened heart.
My heart broke a million times, first over her repeatedly making sure I knew she hated me. And questioning if she would ever forgive me or understand why I had to do it. Then it broke some more when she told me she didn't think God wanted her to be my daughter anymore because she was being so hateful and she wasn't the perfect daughter. She's 8...why would she think she needs to be perfect?! Have I given her that impression? Is there something wrong with her? There was more than once today that I felt like a complete and utter failure as a mother.
I read a couple weeks ago a quote saying that the kids who need the most love, ask for it in the most unloving ways. Maybe I should have just loved on her instead of sending her to her room when she kept telling me she hated me, even after she had calmed down. Maybe I should have done everything differently.
But you know what? At the end of the day, I did what I thought was best. I prayed for Jesus to be present and calm my baby girl over and over. I don't know why that didn't happen. I prayed for grace and patience. And I pray that she will very soon understand, at least in part. I know one day when she's a mom, she will understand in whole.
This mother thing? It's hard. Really hard. But you know else? God is there. He never sleeps. As one mom said, "He works the night shift." He loves Anna even more than I do.
So tonight, I go to bed emotionally & physically exhausted, knowing that His mercies are new every morning.