Since my daughter turned a year, she really just stopped being interested in food. We stopped nursing at 13 months and she had started walking a week before her 1st birthday. She was so interested in her new abilities that it got to the point where she just stopped putting on weight. She just kept getting taller and skinnier. All around me were chubby babies with rolls of baby fat that seemed to love to eat and I had a 14 month old that had already lost all of her baby weight! To make things worse, every meal was such a struggle. We never knew what she wanted because it seemed to change on a daily basis. And what she did seem to like best usually had very little calories. It got so bad that our pediatrician sent us to see a nutritionist after her 15 month appointment. The nutritionist examined her and although she was in the bottom 1% for weight for children her age, she had a ton of energy and was still slowly growing taller so she did not diagnose her as "failure to thrive".
This is her at her birthday and then about 4 months laterAfter that we felt like terrible parents and we followed her advice the best we could. I struggled, especially while traveling, because it was so hard to get the things I needed for her. I could never count on a fridge or access to things she liked and that were good for her. I realized later that I was angry with God for putting me in this situation. Things seemed to be a little better when we were at home and that is where I wanted to be.
But that is not where God had called me to be.
Things got better and then they got worse and then better and then worse again. It seemed to go in cycles a bit. We eventually got more used to the way things were (though her not eating continued to gnaw at me) and learned a few "tricks" that kept us from losing our minds. I tried to suppress it, but for me, worry for my daughter was an ever present thing that was sucking the joy out of my life.
Then we come to a month ago. Our daughter had taken a turn for the better and had actually seemed to take an interest in eating again. The right circumstances around a meal really made a difference though. We were at the end of one of our longest trips (10 weeks!) and had started a very busy conference. Not only was the conference busy, but they had childcare for our daughter every day of it. We were not with her for much of the day and they were to feed her several meals. This made me nervous because she never eats a meal for anyone but us it seems, and because she had not done well the last time we left her in childcare for several hours. Well, as the days went by, sure enough, without one of us there she wasn't eating and had missed several meals. Her sleep schedule was off and that wasn't helping things either. On Saturday morning I was supposed to give a brief testimony at the Ladies Meeting. When we woke up that morning, our daughter was just not herself and we could not get her to eat. I was really struggling at that point and had no idea how I was possibly going to be able to speak with a clear conscience. I knew I had to deal with my worry or it was going to become a major stumbling block in my life. There was a continental breakfast at the church that morning and when we got there we hoped some of the sweets at least would tempt our daughter. No such luck. I couldn't take it anymore. I left her with my husband and just got out of there. I kept walking until I found some place secluded and just broke down and sobbed. I poured out my heart to God. I took all of my worry and anger and frustration and just laid it at His feet. And then it hit me. He knew exactly where I was. He knew what my circumstances were and that I would have no control over them and He chose to give them to me anyways. Now the question was, "Did I trust Him?" Did I truly believe that He loved my daughter more than I did.
That is when, like Samuel's mother, I gave her back to Him. And our new baby. And my husband. And myself.
I can't tell you that things got better overnight. It turns out that she had contacted a bug of some kind and by the time we got her "home" (someone's house we were staying at) she had a fever that kept us both out of church the next morning as well. But when I struggled to go back to worrying, I remembered that I shouldn't, I couldn't. Worry was like a cancer in me, slowly eating me up and I couldn't go back there again. With time, it got easier and our daughter got better. Then, to our delight, she picked right back up where she left off and started eating again. Watching the change that has come over her eating habits is amazing! Lesson learned. Worry is not worth it! I am glad God chose to teach me this in a small way and hope I won't need to visit that lesson again any time soon!
Here is my life verse (ironically):
Is. 26:3 - Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee because he trusteth in Thee.
My sweet husband and beautiful girl who is starting to get some "chub back in those cheeks" as we like to say!