Someone somewhere told me that when our children grew up and left home, we would have more time for ourselves – our lives would slow down and actually may even seem a little dull. I was told that the “empty-nest syndrome” would kick in because of this vacuum in my life and I would be depressed and might be tempted to meddle in my children’s lives just to have something to do!
I’m still trying to figure out exactly WHEN this emptiness is going to occur! Our last child left home about four years ago – but I haven’t noticed any empty spaces or even any spare time. As for meddling in my children’s lives — well, I did that when they were at home – so of course, that hasn’t changed, it’s just taken on the form text messages instead of verbal nagging. The children are actually okay with this because I can nag them all I want, get it out of my system – and they can totally ignore my text message and probably delete them! Works for all of us.
Time is the big issue. Someone was lying about having spare time — probably the same bunch of idiots who told me that potty-training was easy, that the teen years are a trying but rewarding time and that someday your children will appreciate your nagging!
Every evening we collapse into bed, exhausted from our schedule — even on the weekends! On Saturdays, we leave our apartment at about 8:30 a.m. and usually don’t get back to it until 9 p.m. The day is taken up with meetings, errands, T-ball games, shopping – and we throw in breakfast and dinner with friends. Sundays aren’t much different – leave the house midmorning and don’t arrive back at home until about 9 p.m. – Mass, lunch with family, errands, dinner, lawn work, etc. WHERE IS THE SPARE TIME!
I’m trying to figure out how we fit all of this stuff into our lives when all of the children were at home? Did we skip a lot of this stuff and we have simply back-filled where we used to do things with the kids? Did we have more energy and didn’t notice how exhausted we were?
All I know is that I’m not any less busy than I was when the kids were home – in fact, we tend to get ourselves double and triple-booked for stuff – mainly because I don’t have the excuse any longer of needing to get home to the kids! I think I could use a small dose of “empty-nest syndrome” so I could get some rest!