|Cecilia, age 5-1/2, is an awesome big sister!|
I worked at a "welcome summer" festival on Saturday night serving beer at a classy new brewery in town. I loved everything about it! (And, it helps that I happen to love beer!). As I had random conversations with my fellow server and the patrons (most of whom where in a great mood as they were enjoying a lovely afternoon out), I felt alive in a way that I haven't felt in years.
Of course, I've been very much alive the past almost nine years as a stay-at-home mother. I have countless priceless memories stored up in my heart, and I wouldn't trade any of it. Even the challenges have brought me much closer to God, emotionally stronger, more adaptable to situations, and grateful for all of my blessings.
There was something about being with strangers at a festival on a very humid (eventually stormy, thus suddenly ending the festival!) day in June that made me feel...happy (and younger...although I often reflect on how good it feels to be (almost!) 40). I remembered how I enjoyed waiting tables in past seasons of my life. Not because of the co-workers, mind you, but because of the customers. I enjoy making small talk with people. And, it is quite a nice feeling when those people thank you for your service and smile at you as they put a dollar or two in a tip jar (for pouring a drink, really? With six young children, I am really good at pouring drinks!). :)
The whole experience made me feel more...likable. Now, don't get me wrong. I KNOW that I am loved. The fact that God even thought of creating me is enough love to ponder for a lifetime. I am blessed to still hear my parents tell me that they love me every week, my spouse shows his love for me and our children daily (no words needed), and my children are at an age where the words, "I love you," roll easily off their little tongues. And then, there are friendships that are dear.
But, I have been in my kitchen for almost nine years. Besides the daily trips to preschool, the grocery store, and the playdates (which have been God sends, mind you!), I have wondered what it would feel like to return to the "other" world. Would I be good at anything? Would people still like me?
For four hours and 15 minutes on Saturday afternoon (before the storm closed up shop in an instant!), the answer was a refreshing, "yes"!
I am hoping and praying that the jobs will continue to work out for the employers, me, and our family.
Another positive side effect of the job happened the following morning. Because I had not seen my kids the previous evening, I was actually happy to get back to my routine. And, as the 4-year-old screamed for an hour (no lie) because his cereal had gotten too soggy (and meanie that I am, I insisted that he still eat his breakfast!) and the 3-year-old rejected every.piece.of.clothing that she owns, I really started to look forward to my next shift. ;)
|So grateful for the man in the middle! The kids couldn't wait to give him his Father's Day gift!|