So you are finally an empty nester! You know what that means, right? No kids, no responsibilities at home! It is that act of our children leaving home that brings on the worry free life!
Congratulations, you are now entitled to a life of non-stop partying and doing whatever you want.
Children leaving home means no more responsibilities at home.
You no longer have to worry about enforcing rules like curfews and doing chores; it isn’t your problem anymore if the kids have sex, do drugs, or cheat at Scrabble. You are a free agent, now able to choose your destiny!
Well, you can do this if your spouse approves, of course, good luck with that. Let me know how it works out for you.
All kidding aside, being at home alone without your children can be a terrifying thing.
If you are like us, your children are your life. Their triumphs became your successes. Their pain became your sleepless nights, trying to solve their problems and keeping them from being hurt.
We all want the best for our kids, and as good parents, we went after that like a honey badger after a snake. We were going to make damn sure they had the best we could offer.
A success that does not feel successful
Look at them now, off to college, off to the military to serve our country, off to work to take care of themselves off to get married and raise a family of their own.
You know what that means right? That we did a good job.
We took these screaming helpless little humans, and we nurtured them, fed them clothed them, protected them, instilled in them the beliefs that we hold dear to us.
We got them through infancy, the terrible twos, first days of school, first love and first heartbreaks. They are incredible human beings now!
This empty nest feels like the most glorious let down ever
So why do we feel so lonely and empty? When we finish a project at work, we feel happy because we did a good job, relief that it is over, and a sense of anticipation at the new project to come.
However, this empty nest feels like the most glorious let down ever. At the time in our lives when we should feel the most accomplished, the proudest of who we are and the fact we raised children that didn’t turn out to be little sociopaths, we feel empty.
The good news for you reading this is, you are normal. The bad news? It still sucks.
Having children in our home lives gives us focus, provides us with a purpose. We want to be the best that we can be so that our children see that and strive to be that themselves.
I’m going to say this, and I know that you know so I shouldn’t say it, but I’m going to anyway.
You will survive this. You will once again find a purpose for your life that doesn’t involve ensuring a little human survives another day.
Your life is once again yours to do with as you see fit. You get to make each day a new day for you. That thought is terrifying.
Rediscovering yourself after your kids have left the home
So how do you do this? I have no answer for you.
That answer is your answer to find.
I can tell you that here at Empty Nestin’ we are redefining ourselves. We are rediscovering that we are a formidable team. That what made us such great parents, (and yes we are great parents, we let the little monsters live didn’t we?) also made us a great couple.
As I sit here writing this, Heather is sitting at her desk, obsessing over fonts, spacing, layouts, and other details that make my brain hurt.
I am the emotional one. Our kids go to their mother for financial advice and to be told to toughen up and kick some butt!
Our kids come to me because I am the softy. They know they have both of us in whatever situation they may need. We are a good team.
Part of finding our “why” in our lives after our children moved out, is Empty Nestin’. It is a way for us to discover that focus on ourselves that we seem to have forgotten when we had children. Empty Nestin’ isn’t just a blog it is a pathway of rediscovery for ourselves.
Come along with us. You never know, you might find that your empty nest is a chance at a new beginning.