It was the last day of our vacation. We had already packed and send our luggage via the cruise line pick up, save our pajamas and a pair of clothes for everyone to wear the next day to disembark the ship and for our drive back home. Children went on the two bunk beds above us and we were getting ready to sleep on our bed right below them. That’s when my daughter demanded her socks. “Mom, I am cold, I need my socks.” I lay thinking of all the possible ways I could give her no answer, because her socks had already been packed away and might now be in transit. I panicked at the thought of an upcoming tantrum. The demand turned into a whine which told me I now am expecting some major…”MAMA, I AM COLD, PLEASE COULD YOU GIVE ME MY SOCKS?” there… she let it out, to which my husband prodded me, “are you awake? Can you give it to her?”
“Um…no, I don’t have it. Its in the box, I send it away.” I sheepishly whispered, hiding my blooper… to which my husband turned around and really “hit the bed.” That is also strangely when my daughter “realized” her feet are starting to hurt because of the cold. The blankets apparently were not enough to keep her warm. My husband got up and punched some numbers on the thermostat. That did not help either. Thanks to my original sin of manipulation ( believe me, I fight this one real hard!) at just FIVE years, she has done a good job inheriting all of me and more so at that particular moment when she REALIZED she did not have what she should have.
My mind went into action. The damage control should be done in the middle of the sea for peace and behavior control should be done I was sure, may be when we hit the land. I tried the apology route that I was sorry and I was not careful to check if we had everything we needed. That did not seem to help her feet that were hurting due to the cold. Next, I tried the guilt road, “You should be more responsible, you are five years old, you need to make sure you have everything you need.” That worked. Now that was the problem. There was too much guilt than what the five year old could handle and what I had intended. The guilt gave way to crying!
Gee, Thanks! But now I had two problems to solve. My hormones took over and I said, “My sweet child, come down to mama’s bed.” Like the lamb that so silently follow the shepherd, she came down gracefully, no more tears, no more sounds, her demands gave way to soft submission and she laid down beside me. I stretched our blanket over her and reached and hugged her. The socks were still missing, but the demands vanished and were overcome by the security and comfort of a blanket of love. That was strangely the end of the tale of missing socks, coldness and hurting feet!!
She went to sleep in no time and I went into thinking. Lord, how many times I voice the complaints of missing needs, coldness and hurts? All the while not realizing that, inside the blanket of your presence it doesn’t really matter if I have the need met. I learned four lessons in the middle of the sea that night.
1. Turn my focus from the problem to the person
2. Turn my language from demanding the presents to asking for His presence
3. Turn my seeming lack into a possible gain of Him.
4. NEVER FORGET MY DAUGHTER’S SOCKS, EVER!