best transition ever: grandparenting
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with Natalie caine

How to gather ideas for a positive new path without children

March 23, 2004 | by Natalie Caine | One Comment

By Natalie Caine |

Send five post cards to friends just to touch in and feel connected with this
empty nest vacancy. Take a walking meditation with a “seed” of an
idea and let nature feed your idea with thoughts like, I could do that, or I
could add that, or I could let so and so help me with this part.

Get some magazines and tear out some of your favorite words, pictures and glue
them down with no order and no theme in mind . Whatever caught your interest
in that 15 minutes… Then you can see if any idea comes to you from this collage.
Ask at bedtime to remember a dream about WHAT IS THE NEXT STEP FOR ME? I AM
OPEN TO RECEIVING IDEAS. Keep paper and pencil or a small recorder at your bedside
so you can take note of them… Keep going, don’t stop if nothing comes. Keep

Have an afternoon tea party, where you provide the goodies and invite some friends.
Even if it is only one friend to support you in hearing how you are feeling
and in what they think you would enjoy doing, now that you have more free time…
Let people help you…You have been the nurturer for so long. It is your time
to receive support, so jot down what you need even if it is “impossible”
to imagine getting.. DARE TO DREAM Make a list now and then, or daily if you
can, of what you are grateful for…This helps with the loneliness and the creativity.

Fill in the blank: if I wasn’t expected to ……I could go and do….. Don’t
tell anyone, but I am secretly wanting to…..

Give yourself about 45 minutes and make a list of all of your accomplishments,
as far back, as you can remember…

We need encouragement and we deserve to have it, so choose someone you feel
safe with and begin there to share yourself. Share some writing you did, or
ideas, or art or music, or even a wild trip you want to make happen… Get encouragement.
Rent movies and yes watch them in the middle of the day…. no one has to know.
Go to a movie even if you can’t find someone to go with you…. just go.. Listen
to music, get a massage. Read a magazine, Buy a cup of coffee or tea, go see
an art exhibit, even if you only have 30 minutes…This way you are feeding

Complete the following sentences:
The next time I am sad, I will……
My treats are…..
I want you to give me….
I laugh when…
I can’t imagine…
If I were to call my own bluff, I’d realize I…
Is it ok to sleep on ideas, and do nothing with them.

Remind myself I don’t have to know anything yet, I do have practice being gentle
with myself and letting others care for me…

One Response

  1. Julie says:

    So glad to see this post – so many great simple ideas – I love the “send a postcard”. Even though my circle is so small, I can see where this will help provide purpose and help some with fillOmg that need to nurture. Thank you!

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Natalie Caine, M.A.