Every week Ruth Ayres extends an invitation to share a celebration. What a great way to focus on something to celebrate!
This week can go one of two ways. I can write about all the emotions I am feeling, this being my last week of a five month maternity leave. Or, I can look back on this gift of time I’ve had and celebrate. After reading Jen Driggers #celebratelu post this week, I’m opting for the latter.
These past five months have given me time to welcome our third baby girl to our family. Five months ago, I was filled with anticipation and wonder. Who would she be? How would our family dynamic change? Today, Rose is four and a half months old and I couldn’t imagine our life without her. She has brought joy to our family in the way that only a new member can. Our older daughters, Wren and Adi, have embraced her with pure love. Watching them care for and play with their baby sister is a new favorite past time…along with watching Rose light up when her sisters are around. I’ve found myself on numerous occasions lost just watching them interact. We have created sisters who, with any luck, will grow up to be best friends who always look out for one another.
This time has given me a taste of the “stay at home mom” life. As Wren has transitioned to kindergarten this fall, I’ve had the chance to drop her off at school each morning and pick her up in the afternoons. Because our girls are early risers, they’ve had the luxury of playing each morning before loading into the minivan for drop-off. Hair braiding, sock choosing, breakfast making are a few of our daily celebrations along with the car ride conversations. We have noticed things around town that we don’t always get to witness. Families waiting for the school bus, the number of school buses on the road, and the patterns of garbage trucks. All the wonder I’ve been able to witness as I see the world through the eyes of my kids. I’ll also note the difference in grocery shopping on a weekday morning versus after school or the weekend. That is also something to celebrate.
I have had time during these past few months to foster relationships with others. Invitations to the park or for late afternoon visits aren’t always feasible while working. But extra time in the day allows more “yes” than “some other time.” I’ve enjoyed the slower pace and time to share with others.
Going back to a job I love and a school filled with people I enjoy being around is something to celebrate. I’ve never really thought of my job as work, more like just going to school-the paycheck is a bonus. While I’ll be sad to have less time just being a mom, I recognize that being a working mom is also a gift. My kids love being around other children and will be growing in ways that I can’t necessarily provide when it’s just us. I’m also excited to jump back into work that I believe in, doing what I’ve always set out to do-bring some good to the world. I hope to model a joy in my work-something I hope that my girls are able to find no matter what paths their lives take.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t celebrate my husband, who happily went off to work each day, making it possible for me to spend the last 21 weeks at home. I may never have a stretch like this again. While some of the days were long and not every moment was sunshine and rainbows, it has been a gift that I’ll cherish always.
Now, onto the next chapter. I’m excited to see what celebrations are waiting for us next.