Today I will walk down these steps for the last time.

IMG_7749These steps have been the entry and exit point to so many stages of my life. I bounced my roller suitcase against them in the dark on my way to catch early morning flights for work. I waddled up and down them, heavy with growing babies in my belly, then balanced those babies in car seats, carriers and on my hip as I fumbled for my keys at the bottom of the diaper bag. I stood swaying fussy infants on those steps during the witching hour, hoping the change in air temperature would calm them. I sat with toddlers counting cars waiting for the hubby to come home. We took first day of school pictures of each boy every year on these steps as they made their way out into the world. I spent many an afternoon sitting on these steps waiting for the school bus to return the boys home to me. I have put band aids on skinned knees, read books, sipped coffee, written blog posts, eaten ice cream cones and watermelon, hugged, kissed and cried, all on these very steps.

For twelve years they were mine. And they witnessed our lives. The comings, the goings, the stopping and pausing, the friends and the family.

Someone new will soon walk up and down these steps. They will walk their dog and lug their groceries. They will run down them late to work or run up them eager to see a friendly face. They will receive packages that bring them joy and welcome guests that bring them love. They will hopefully stop and sit awhile on them, watching the neighbors go about their days, wave and smile and become a part of that same fabric. I hope they look up and will marvel at the view of a bright blue sky telescoped by the bright green canopy of our gorgeous trees. Maybe they will even come out after a summer storm, searching the patches of sky through those trees for a rainbow like we did.

And I want all these things for the person who is next. A new beginning as they walk up them after we walk down and take new steps of our own. There is a new door coming for me and my family. There will be big adventures that build our next steps and tiny moments that will become the mortar of our lives.

But right now, I am sad. I am quiet and reverent and awestruck at how four simple steps could come to mean so very much in my life. I will cherish the moment when I walk down these steps for the final time and look back up at my front door, a door that has now closed on our time here in this home, but will soon open on someone else’s.

There will be time for me to look ahead to my own new door.

But today I’m taking it one step at a time.