This morning marked the end of our summer. An end to sleeping in (ha! Like my kids know how to do that!). An end to swimming lessons, library day, and going to the YMCA. An end to reading Elephant and Piggie books and making Lego creations.
It also marks the end of forced naptimes, figuring out what to make for lunch, a destroyed house, and Mommy wanting to pull her hair out when Daddy calls and says "I need to stay late."
It marks the beginning of a new adventure. Yes, I worked last year. But that was student teaching and para work. I am not belittling AT ALL the roles of student teachers and paras - both work very hard. But it still kinda felt like I was "playing" teacher - and it was in town. This year, I have a real, live teaching position, and it's 30 minutes away. It's a whole new ballgame.
For the last couple of weeks, I have been looking forward to this day. To starting the new path God has for our family. To beginning a career that I have have worked towards for so long. And, honestly, to see a break to what was starting to feel like the endless monotony of summer with the kids. I was ready for something different.
Until I dropped them off at the sitter's.
That, my friends, was one of the hardest things I have had to do in a while.
Joshua, my big tough six-year-old, got a funny look on his face and kept looking away, rubbing his eyes. Anna clung to me and said "I want to stay with you!" Matthew...well, Matthew honestly didn't care, he told me to go. But even that was hard to see. I drove away not with a feeling of newness or refreshing...but with a sense of sadness. I know they will be fine. We love our sitter, she's a gift from the Lord. They have lots of fun over there. Joshua will start 1st grade next week, so he wouldn't even be home even if I was. Anna starts Pre-K in a few weeks. They will soon be swept up into the new routine, and we will settle into the next stage of our family.
Sean and I have prayed over all this. We have sought God's direction. We know this job is from Him, we know He has provided this sitter, we know this is where He has our family going. It's an exciting time in our house.
But this morning...bittersweet.