I'm sure I was told it, but I really didn't realize how motherhood can prepare you for anything. I knew about the physical preaparation; I'd heard enough friends laugh about "everything but the kitchen sink" when they went out. I fell right in step with that and, if you happen to be out with me during the day, there isn't much you might want that I couldn't provide. Stacks of diapers, toys, change of clothes, more toys, bottles of water for Mom, small diaper bag, more toys, snacks for Mom, big diaper bag as back-up, and on and on- most of the time, I feel about as prepared as one woman can be.
However, I didn't realize how much being a parent would mentally prepare me for anything. One more wonderful revelation since Dory's birth: my priorities are straighter than ever. We have a healthy family, a particularly healthy daughter and everything after that is the proverbial icing on the cake.
When Matthew came home, almost eight weeks ago, and announced his company had closed all their offices in the U.S., I realized I wasn't panicked. A year ago, I would have taken the news much like Dory responded to the baby swing at the park:
But I felt a little more like her when we first got out of the car at the park:
And as Matthew explained about his generous severance package, about our extended health benefits, and even his hope to go back to school and get his teaching degree, I felt exactly like Dory feels pretty much all the time:
I did my quick mental run down: Dory well and happy? Check. Matthew and I well and happy? Check.
It was hard to worry after that. There's uncertainity right now, but I can see change as being something interesting, something welcome. Matthew's job had not been something he enjoyed in a long time, though I believe he brought excellence to the day-to-day difficulty. Still, the loss was not a loss at all and this was not a sad day for us. Change came at the best possible time, in the softest possible way.
In fact, excitement crept into the house, slipping in through the open doors and windows, the feeling of possibility blowing in with the the fresh spring breezes. What an opportunity for us as a family! Matthew's been home to see this time of explosive growth in Dory, as she moved from sitting, to rolling, to cheerful chattering and almost, any day now crawling. We've been on the go ever since, taking advantage of beautiful weather, free time and our enjoyment of each other. Matthew particularly appreciates this time he has with his girl.
He's working out what he wants to do next and we're all getting excited about what the future holds. When Dory was born I felt, so clearly, that anything is possible. Here we are, in the season of her first spring, and I feel even more deliciously hopeful about our future.