Saturday, January 14, 2012

Off you go now!

My children are in 1st and 3rd grade this year.  Other than crying like a baby when I first took daughter #1 to daycare at age 7 weeks (cripes, you'd have thought I was giving her up for adoption, the way I cried, but which only lasted until I realized I was free of baby-care activities for the next nine hours), I have not mourned a milestone.  My friends have reported all kinds of trauma about their babies growing up, but I celebrate every moment of independence.  Not to say I don't have my nostalgic moments where I realize another level of maturity is underway...and I'm sure I will feel it deeply when my company is rejected and kisses goodnight are no longer required - don't even get me started on how grateful I am that my almost-9 year old still lets me hold her hand... but, just today, the little one was missing a game for her DS and without even asking me, or hollering about how it it was lost, she stopped to think, and went to fetch it from her jacket pocket.  Awesome!

Some people I know dread the days of the empty nest - not knowing how their life will go on without the kids around every day, or what will frame their days without the kids' schedules to accommodate.  I know it will come with a certain amount of sadness, but I have no doubt I'll feel much the same as I did last year when I put both kids on the school bus for the first time - "have fun!  be good!  see you soon! love you!" and then walked home with a little skip in my step.


  1. The modern world of technology, allows us to keep in such better touch. When my oldest went of to college, our communication improved, even though we were eight hours apart by car.

  2. Mark makes a really good point. I know my first year away from home, back in the olden days, I talked to my parents maybe once a month by phone and wrote a letter a little less often, if they were lucky. Now, I hear from my away-from-home oldest two on an almost daily basis.

    I'm with you, though, and was all along. I don't know if that makes me unsentimental or just practical, but to me, the goal was always to produce independent functioning people to send out into the world, so I couldn't help celebrating a little with each milestone. I still sometimes get a little twinge of missing the teeny babies or adorable toddlers they were, but I'm definitely not sitting around mourning. ;)

    I know this is probably more in-depth than you meant to get, but I think sometimes the "empty nest" issue has to do with how much a mom has going on for herself, inside herself, etc. My kids were always my main focus, but they were never my only focus. I think it makes a huge difference in all sorts of ways.


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