Today was a big day. I clocked out for the last time from behind my desk at the bank. The desk I've sat behind for five years. That desk has been through two babies, a third pregnancy, a lot of tears, and a lot of laughs. I've had the same morning routine, the same hallway trek to the bathroom, the same faces each day, for five years. I turned off the light, carried my box of personal items out the door, and drove away. Yet, it feels no different. Like I'll be back through there on Monday.
But I won't.
This morning Haley said, while moving her mittened hands for emphasis, "I am so excited this is daycare for the last time!" I'm always excited to pick her up from daycare at the end of the day, but after hearing her exclaim that this morning, I was really excited. She wasn't so excited when I actually showed up to get her, though. Lots of pouts, lots of delays, and lots of excuses to try to stay longer. Not that I blame her. She was at the best daycare in town (in my humble opinion), surrounded by fantastic people who have a real heart for the kids they care for. Once we got her belongings and signed her out, she raced me to the door (she always wins...this pregnant lady doesn't run. Even when she isn't pregnant.) and said once buckled in, "I get to stay home with Mommy now! Meow meow!" Apparently that's kitty talk for, "So exciting!"
For a celebratory dinner, I drove through Burger King. Nothing says "new beginnings" like a strawberry shake and onion rings. Except maybe a steak and sparkling cider, but who has time for that? We sat around the table as a family, with our fast food feast, and as Brent and I chatted about our days, Haley sang over our conversation along to the Frozen soundtrack. It was pretty much the best dinner ever.
The really big news of the day, however, was what happened a few minutes after lunch. I had my arm resting across my protruding belly, when my arm bounced up. Little man had kicked hard enough, I could feel him from the outside. From the outside! This is always a big deal for me. Haley was so teeny Brent only felt her move two or three times. Harlynn was a kung-fu master in-utero. She moved constantly and once she was strong enough to make my outer shell move, everyone could feel her at any given time. And now, Brent and Haley will be able to feel this little guy. It's a comforting, reassuring feeling. It makes me feel closer to him, of course, but also to Harlynn. I remember how much I loved feeling her kick the tar out of me. It was a sweet , tender moment today.
When I came home I found an email confirming that not only will I be a contributor to Real Christian Wives, but also to Moms of Faith. I'm going to be writing about things I'm no expert in, and praying through somehow being able to some way encourage and empower wives and moms in their life journeys. Gracious me - this is big.
It was far from a typical Friday. The last day at the bank. The first day of Haley and I spending all our time together. The first big kick from Little Man. A chance to write even more. As I close the books on today, I feel at peace. It's a good time for good things. I feel it. I haven't felt that in a long while. But I feel it today.
The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.