6 months ago, we struggled with bedtime. 3yo A and 1yo B would start crying as soon as they knew bedtime was near. A was so tense he had trouble falling asleep, and even after he was asleep would have his fists clenched, muscles tight, heart racing. He would wake up screaming multiple times every night. B wanted to be in my lap, but facing outward, away from me, with as little of her body touching mine as possible. She preferred her head to be not on my arm, but on the cold, hard arm of the chair in which we rocked. Night after night they both screamed while Michael and I tried desperately to comfort. Some nights it took hours, and ended with me crying right along with them. Naptime was much the same, but felt even more desperate as I prayed for a break in the middle of the very long days.
Today, B fell asleep for a nap while Sierra rocked her facing in.
Tonight after baths, A snuggled himself into bed (along with "Dog the Frog", his stuffed animal) before I even came into the room.
Tonight, B snuggled against me in our rocking chair and within minutes I felt her little body relax and her breathing become even.
We have a long way to go in this journey, and some days it is easier to focus on the many struggles we have before us. But for tonight, I will thank God for the hard-won battles that we've faced over these last 6 months, and be grateful for his peace that passes all understanding that has and will continue to carry us through.