“My house and life now feels so small. My kids are all in college or working.” Yes, we wanted this for them. We are proud.
What do we do with this empty feeling and the lack of giving to them?”
It takes time to find your new rhythm. One day you think you have it and the next you are at the market and see what you use to buy for them, and sadness stops you. This is natural. I remember passing Halloween decorations in front of a house and that made me sad. We liked the role we had and mostly we like loving our kids and having them around. Although, I need to add, I have had parents call saying,” thank goodness they are out of the house. They just were so crabby and self-centered.”
One day you feel relief and another you don’t feel like doing anything because you just miss them so much.
Begin something. Anything. Just to play around with what might be fun for you. You get to change your mind.
Now you are invited into this major transition asking you to focus on your needs and wants. I know. It is new behavior for you. Most parents share with me that after months of uncertainty and some sadness they got into the best wellness routines that they ever had. Other parents began reading at the library to kids and some did short road trips. The list is long in regard to what parents discovered that was fulfilling for them.
Remind yourself to pause before you text or call them. Check in with yourself asking,” what do I really need for me today? Is it talking to them or letting them be? Would it be helpful for me to go to an outside coffee shop and be around people? Do I need to simply rest today?”
I imagine you are surprised at the ladder of feelings that visit you now that your house feels smaller and quieter. Life, in time does show you choices that will give you new meaning beyond full time parenting.
Take good care and visit my website, email me for events and some choices for you,
Natalie Caine, M.A. firstname.lastname@example.org