Well, I think it can go without saying that the last 6 months...okay, okay, NINE months...have gone by like a blur. My non-diary-keeping, non-journal-writing self definitely took over the blog. Let's just say the adjustment to full-time working mother-wife-fillintheblankhere did not go as well as hoped. Though we muddled along, I definitely was not able to step back and take in all that was happening over that time. I truly have to look back at pictures to try to savor small moments where I was able to be fully present with my family and not worrying about work or other responsibilities. You'll notice the posting stopped mid-December, which is also when I went back to work.
Much has clearly happened in our lives, and needless to say Li'l G's life since December. Here's a quick summary (photo updates will follow in the next post): For starters, she's almost 11 months now, so we've passed several milestones - solid foods, sitting up, crawling, standing, giggling, talking (albeit mostly monosyllabic babbling), first teeth, first dip in the pool, first ice-cream, first beach visit, first zoo visit (and many more), first long car trip...well, the list really does go on. Her hair has now come back from the baby-faux-hawk she had going on in December through early spring, much to dad's liking... I think he was worried her only future was in pro-wrestling or ink-artistry there for a bit. I think she could have done some famous choreographing like Sonja Tyre, myself. But, all worrying was for naught - she's got plenty of hair now, and much of my time is spent fighting her to put in girly bows and flowers since people STILL call her a boy. She can be in pink. She can be in a skirt. And let's be honest - she totally looks like a girl. And people STILL call her a boy.
On that ranting note, I've found over the last several months that my pet-peeves surrounding her and our family are slowly growing, God help me...please! Nothing gets my blood boiling like people who say to me how nice it must be to be a full-time mom now since I've quit working full-time to stay home more. Now? Really? As though somehow working away from home made me less of a mother? My sympathies and praise for all those moms who are working full-time or more - choices in this world are tough, and you are no less a "full-time mom" because you happen to also have another full-time job.
Pet peeves aside, it's been a stressful, yet blessed time for our family. As I noted above, I quit my job in July because I was pretty miserable, and luckily the Hubbers picked up an extra little gig. I hear people don't accept Monopoly money these days, sadly. Oh, and did I mention that just before I left my job, my car was stolen? Well, it was. I suppose Japanese cars are hot commodoties, but someone should have looked more closely at the 11 year old car with a leaky AC system and very very old shocks and struts. Timing was great, though, since I no longer needed to commute to work and luckily I hadn't left anything terribly "valuable" in the car. So, now we're down a full-time job and up one car payment. Awesome. Let's just say it's been an adjustment, but by the grace of God we are making it just fine. God has truly been with us at every turn through family, friends and acquaintances from Church and ministry - I know with all my heart that whatever sacrifices we may have to make, this was the right step for us.
It's taken a little while to learn to step back and discern what to say yes to, or realize that just because I am home now doesn't mean that I am a slacker...well, not entirely anyway...taking care of my family is important work, and far more meaningful than what I left. I have to remind myself when I miss working, which I occassionally do, that my children will only be young for a little while, and since my life is committed now to working for the Lord, there is plenty to be done in little, quiet ways until such time that I am called to return to more active ministry. I've grown closer to God through the face of my Li'l G, forgiveness and patience of my Hubbers and the daily miracles of provision and connection I have witnessed since having the opportunity to slow down and see what is going on around me.
I would never have imagined how difficult it would be to quit work, and yet how easy at the same time. I truly can't even remember what it was that was so important about what I did every day there; I can't say that now. I hope that as Li'l G grows, I can show her the value of picking and choosing what is most important in her life, and trusting that God will provide for her even if she makes mistakes. Sometimes it is just about taking a leap of faith to feel the breath of the Spirit as you fly face forward toward what is new.