And just like that, we’re empty nesters again
Yesterday I helped our youngest son move back to school. He’s a second year aerospace engineering student at Cal Poly Pomona; not too far away, but far enough. I have to admit it was bittersweet coming home to an empty house.
We are so lucky to have a great relationship with all three of our boys. The two oldest (23 year old twins) live in the city, not too far from each other. One is a social media strategist for Disney Interactive, and the other is still in school at American Jewish University studying business. They visit frequently, bringing laundry and messes, sometimes staying the weekend, sometimes just the day.
I can’t believe they actually want to hang out with us, but they do! And, we are enjoying our time with them so much now that they are all adults, I feel like we are truly friends. When they are here (and it’s rare they are all here at the same time), there’s a different energy in the house. I can’t describe it, it’s certainly less relaxing, but it’s nice and I welcome it.
When they’re gone, and we’re alone, there’s a stillness in the air. It’s like a semi-colon; you’re sort of waiting for something, but you don’t know what. Maybe this is because we are new empty nesters, not quite used to the undisturbed lifestyle that is now our situation. We haven’t yet reached the point of retirement either (there are still two college tuitions to deal with), so we can’t just take off and travel for weeks at a time, as I am aching to do.
There are benefits to this newly found freedom, however.
- The house stays clean
- There’s less laundry
- The grocery bill is lower
- Utility bills are lower (less showering!)
- We are no longer woken up by a late arrival home (or waiting for the arrival at all), and/or the makings of a midnight meal
- We can leave our bedroom door open all. the. time.
- We can sleep naked if we want
- We can eat lighter and cleaner, and not have to deal with starvation dialogue (only occasionally from my husband)
- We don’t have to jockey for space on the DVR
- We can just pick up and go for the day, or the weekend
It’s an exciting time, both for them and for us. I feel confident that we’ve infused them with the life skills for independence, responsibility, graciousness, and a strong moral code. And, as parents, that’s what our job is. At this stage, I feel like we’ve won.
I think this transition will be just fine.
image via unsplash