As the kids head back to school, parents and especially the new empty nesters will experience a variety of changes which can bring with them a variety of emotions. My daughter returned to her second year of college this weekend and I find myself on a bit of an emotional roller coaster as I realize I have the house to myself again. It’s peaceful and it is also lonely. The energy has shifted and I’m getting used to it. There’s nobody to blame now. If I can’t concentrate – it is all my fault! It is a situation asking for some awareness, appreciation and balance.
I’ve been through this before and I know the up-sides. There is this giddiness about having more time to do what I want, to be more self-focussed and less structured. There is also a richer relationship with my husband and a true sense of pride that my kids are equipped to succeed, even without me around.
There are low points too. There is the new financial pressure of college bills, fewer family meal-times, smaller grocery lists and stillness where there was once so much banging and thumping. I seem to be tripping over the dog and cat constantly, as I am the only one they have left to follow around.
I was feeling so peaceful and a little lonely this AM in my empty nest…..till I got in the shower, washed my hair and realized my daughter had removed my favorite hair conditioner. As the anger boiled, I replaced it with gratitude. Things will stay where I put them till Thanksgiving!