|photo credit Partha S. Sahana|
My baby was not a fan of his last pediatrician's visit.
Not. A fan.
He was fine with being weighed and measured. He was okay about being dressed down to his diaper and prodded and turned this way and that.
But he was violently opposed to the immunizations at the end.
Since he's my sixth baby I've definitely done this before, but it was still the worst to watch his innocent face crumple when the nurse plunged the needle in his leg.
He didn't know what was going on or why, he only knew that this was the worst possible thing that could be happening to him. And he reacted accordingly.
It was in that very unlikely place, comforting my screaming baby on a tissue paper-covered exam table, that I realized something about God.
He knows exactly what it's like to watch one of His children suffer through what they're sure is the worst thing ever, even if they can't possibly understand right then that it's for the best.
One of the things I believe as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons for short) is that God is my father, and I'm His child. So even though I didn't realize it when I started having babies, I was about to learn a whole lot about Him just by becoming a parent myself.
God knows that all the trials and hardships I suffer through are ultimately for my good. Even the serious ones that seem catastrophic at the time (and maybe for years afterward) are like sandpaper smoothing away my rough edges.
I'll be the first to admit that when tragedy strikes, I lose all semblance of perspective. I get anxious and scared, assuming it's going to be terrible now and forevermore. But God's not worried. He knows that it's not going to be this hard forever, and that it's going to turn out alright.
Taking my son in for immunizations wasn't my favorite day, but if I could go back and do it again I wouldn't have changed a thing. He certainly couldn't see it, but we weren't just making him needlessly suffer there in that office. We were trying to protect him from some truly awful infectious diseases.
Hopefully the next time some disaster rocks my world, I'll remember this moment with my son in the pediatrician's office and ask my father God, "Is this suffering, or is it medicine?"
For more posts in the "What Motherhood Taught Me About God" series, check out: