September 27, 2010

Crisp and Cool

After days of sweltering heat followed by a long stretch of gloomy days, I was pleasantly surprised when I woke up to a crisp, cool, clear morning. The air has just barely turned cool enough to bite your skin ever so slightly. It smells clean and fresh.
I moved around the house this morning opening dusty windows and breathing deeply.

So much has happened since my last post!
For one thing, I quit my job.
Now, I'm a happy housewife. I spend my days cleaning and cooking and grocery shopping and going to Bible studies and taking Pilates classes and knitting (sort of). The dread and exhaustion that I had begun to feel before and after each day of work has been replaced with a quiet peace that seems to fill the house. I love it.
And Daniel loves it.
My job was not a terrible job, but for several months now my heart has been elsewhere. Thinking that I was wallowing in discontent, I treated it as a spiritual struggle that I had to overcome. I prayed about it day after day. Truly, my hope was that the answer would come in the form of motherhood. There was no question that I was going to stay home once I had a baby. But the months continued to pass. It became increasingly apparent that God, for the time, had (has) other plans for me.
In August, a series of events caused Daniel and I to pause and think. Daniel had long been encouraging me to put in my notice at work, but I always said no. For some reason, I believed I would feel guilty that I wasn't "contributing" to our income. I never questioned whether or not I would be bored. One thing that I do have is a passion for the little things. I love sorting through piles of laundry and washing dishes in warm soapy water and running the vacuum around the house. I love reorganizing closets and straightening up book shelves and tucking in smooth sheets.
But I was afraid. Afraid that without my additional income we would find ourselves in a bind. Through my thoughts and actions I was expressing my foolish reliance on myself and my ability to provide. But in August, I stopped. I took a week off from work. This will just be a trial, I told myself.
Five days at home was all it took to assure me that I was meant to be home. When I was home, cooking and cleaning, I felt a special kind of joy. Do you know what it is like to feel like you are doing exactly what you are supposed to do?
It was as if a great burden on my heart and mind had been lifted. I felt sure and certain, full of hope and confidence. I spent much of the week in prayer, asking God for wisdom and clarity.
The following weekend Daniel and I sat at a coffee shop and discussed the budget. It quickly became clear that God would provide and had been providing for a long time. The excitement was electric; both of us felt more and more sure that this was right.
On Monday I went in to work and put in my notice. I was a little nervous--not about my decision. Just nervous. I don't know what I was expecting, but I was met with words of encouragement and loving support from my boss and co-workers (although, there were a few that insisted I would be back in two weeks, begging for my job back because I'd gotten bored sitting at home). Two weeks dragged by slowly. Daniel's car broke down. But we didn't worry. We knew that God would provide.
Finally, on a Friday afternoon at 4:30 I left the office for the last time. It was a little weird. But exhilarating.

This Monday marks my third week at home, and I am in heaven. I wake up in the mornings in the arms of my husband, to soft sunlight. The mornings are not crazy and hectic, but peaceful and quiet. Every day is different, with its many tasks and commitments. One of my greatest joys right now is the freedom to say I'm available when I'm asked to serve. We are thriving with one vehicle. Daniel took out his nearly-new bicycle that has been collecting dust in the garage for nearly a year, and he rides to work every day. He loves it!
Although I have a big, bad case of baby fever, I am content where I am now. I am savoring this sweet time with my husband and enjoying the kind of freedom we have.

My focus and my goal and my joy is to be a good wife, supporting and loving my husband. I am organizing and nesting and creating. And I hope, some day soon, to bring a beautiful baby into a peaceful, joyful, God-glorifying home.

I'm happy.