Your empty nest feels ... well empty!
Remember when your children were young and you couldn’t wait for your alone time? The hours when your kids were young where they would be at your feet, on your leg, strapped on to your body (front or back)… and all you wanted was 15 minutes alone. Even 5 would have been good on some days!
You’d sneak a book into the bathroom, hoping you could get through a page and finish the book before they left for college.
Or you kept a stack of magazines in the corner so when you had a real couple of minutes you could catch up on the latest political or celebrity gossip, enabling you to have an adult conversation if you ever got out of the house.
Maybe you ran the shower run for an extra 10 minutes so as to be uninterrupted - as you peered into the mirror to see if the real you was still in there somewhere?
And now, your kids are all off to college or out on their own and the aloneness seems to scream at you.
But you are not alone – you have YOU. Wonderful, exciting, interesting you. The one you were looking for 15 years ago when you locked yourself in the bathroom and thought the bags under your eyes from not sleeping for three years would not go away.
“I think it’s very healthy to spend time alone. You need to know how to be alone and not be defined by another person.” – Oscar Wilde
Embrace this new aloneness. Learn who you are now without someone calling out ‘Mom”.
You will never be the person you were 18 or more years ago. Don’t even try to recapture that person.
You are so much more now that you’ve been a mom!
As a mom you have experienced the highs and lows of life as you could not have possibly imagined before raising a child.
Discover that renewed person in this new found time. Don’t be afraid to be alone.
Use this new found time to:
Appreciate the silence
Read whatever you want
Create something fabulous
Volunteer in a non-child related activity
Plan and dream for your future
Life for the last 18+ years was a lot of reacting to the situation in front of you; now you have time to listen to your heart and do some of the things that have almost as much meaning to you as did raising your children.
Don’t worry, your new found hobbies, plans and work will not replace your love and concern for your kids. In fact, these activities will give you some fun conversation to share when they return.
And, they will be back… sending in the middle of the night texts asking you to send acne cream, phone calls to you when you are at painting class (you didn’t answer my call because you were doing what???), and for the joyous, wonderful holidays where you will be so happy to have them arrive, and then almost as happy to have them leave.
After all…. By then you will have become used to your precious alone time!
Need some ideas about how to approach this new phase of life?
Share with your friends too! They'll appreciate you even more!
To your best,
More on empty nesting and mid life at www.getfocusedonliving.com
More from parenting