In all the moving and unpacking craziness, I forgot to mention that it was my anniversary. My one-year anniversary of being a stay-at-home mom.
A year ago I was working in a corporate office managing a small staff of administrative personnel. I had an office and a name plate with a title and I wore heels and pencil skirts every day. I went to meetings and made decisions, I had a fantastic boss and worked with people that I truly liked. But I woke every morning and dropped off my child at daycare and fought the pit in my stomach. When I would pick her up in the evenings, I would fight the knot in my throat as she came crawling towards me with that big goofy grin. I savored every single drop of our weekends together and those days always felt too short. I liked working outside our home. I liked having a place to go and work to do and adults to talk to and decisions to make and emails to send, but my heart was at home.
I knew where I needed to be. I knew that I was being called to work at home as a mother, as a wife. And to be honest, a part of me wasn't necessarily thrilled about it. Because in the same way that I knew that God was calling me to be a stay at home mom, I also knew that it was going to be the hardest job I've ever had. I mean let's be honest, I've quit every job I've ever had as soon as I got tired of it and this would be one job that I couldn't quit. I wouldn't even get to take a personal day when I just wasn't feeling it. And on top of that, it wouldn't exactly be an 8-5 position.
But another part of me was absolutely thrilled at the prospect of seeing my children learn and grow each and every day and being the one in charge of that growth. My heart ached at the thought of someone else kissing booboos and wiping away hot tears and playing peek-a-boo and even doling out punishment- and it leapt at the thought of extra kisses and cuddles on the couch on lazy, sun-drenched afternoons after a long day of play dates and baking flawless batches of chocolate chip cookies... Maybe the latter wasn't necessarily an accurate depiction of what was to come, but it sure beat the hell out of spread sheets and purchase orders.
So I turned in my notice to my boss (who by the way, was absolutely the best boss I've ever had, and if I ever decide to go back to work, I hope to work for her again) and on my last day, Halloween, I breathed a heavy sigh as I rode the elevator and walked to my car for the very last time. I remember going to bed that night and thinking, "I have no idea what we're going to do tomorrow..." it was all at once anxiety-inducing and exciting. The next morning we had French toast. And we began the long, arduous process of starting a routine- learning each other again. The Dance as I call it.
Since that morning, I wouldn't quite say I've mastered the art of being a domestic goddess. We added one more baby to the mix so ya know... the dance continues. But despite all of my shortcomings, I've seen grace and felt God in more ways than I ever thought possible. I've become acutely aware of my personal struggles and aware of those of my babies as well. Ironically, they seem to be the same struggles most of the time: patience, anger, laziness, and refusal to rest when given the opportunity. I am reminded each and every day of the grace that God heaps on me even as I struggle against it.
There are good days and bad. Most days end up somewhere in the middle, a mix of complete and utter failure, and wildly beautiful, messy moments. After we moved, I packed up my pencil skirts and slacks and felt a small pang, but it wasn't a feeling of longing. It was an affirmation of change. It was validation that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. I wouldn't trade it for the world.