As the mom of a young man who recently went off to college and other kids still at home who are growing up faster than I care to admit, I know all too well the feelings that come with empty nest syndrome or preparing for empty nest syndrome.
I have read so many articles, talked to many other moms, and some of what I learned was quite frightening. Many women can easily spiral into battles with depression, anxiety, alcohol use, sleep issues, extreme weight gain or weight loss when a child leaves home. It’s not easy to just continue going about your day to day life. You’re always going to be thinking about them. Are they eating? Are they wearing their seatbelt? Are they studying? Are they being safe? Are they being responsible?
Worrying is normal however; it’s also a time for you to rejoice.
You should rejoice in the fact that your child has entered adulthood! Your child is now able to choose their life path and to do the things that will get them closer to their goals & dreams; goals and dreams they may have had since they were young children. So, while you’re always going to worry about your children once they leave home, I’m saying to start making yourself a priority!
It’s time to allow yourself to do the things that you need and want to do without feelings of guilt. It is the ideal time to start a hobby you’ve wanted to start. It’s a great time to start the exercise program that you’ve been putting off because you just didn’t have the time.
Now is the time!
I encourage you to think about yourself and to think about your kids who are still at home. They’re missing their sibling as well (lol, hopefully) and this is a great time to begin an activity together. It would be awesome if there is an activity that contributes to physical fitness and that you enjoy doing as a family. A daily swim. Walking the dogs in the park. Picking a new trail to explore. It would also be awesome to pick activities that stimulate the mind. Explore new areas of the city/county/state where you live. Learn about your heritage. Take cooking classes together. Take trips to local museums. Watch old movies.
Anytime there is a change in life there is also a shift in the ͞norm͟ and that’s okay. Life changes. Norms change. The main thing is to not let it through you for a loop. Find the excitement in the adventure of creating the new norm for you and your family.
And rejoice! Rejoice that your child is grown. Rejoice in the children still at home.
Rejoice in yourself…. as a wife…. mom…. and woman!