Dealing With Empty Nest Syndrome can be tough but it does get better.
Whether your little one heading off to school for the first time or if you have young adults on their way to college, this can be a tough transition, but I promise it gets better!
I knew the day would come when my kids would decide they were ready to leave the nest.
I mean I knew it, but I guess I just never really knew what that would look like. And I certainly was not prepared to have to just sit back while they did it all, practically on their own. I have always been a very hands on parent which was one of the reasons we began homeschooling, and I suppose I just assumed I would continue to be that way forever.
Of course that would not have been healthy or realistic, and they were both so determined to do this grown-up thing with very little help from mom or dad. This came as quite a blow to us, and we took it very personally.
What I didn’t expect was the wave of emotions that would follow.
I wasn’t sure what was happening with me or why I was drowning in these negative emotions.
It felt like I had no one to talk to who could possibly understand how crazy I was feeling inside. What I have since found out is that this is actually a very common, and dare I say somewhat normal response, especially for mothers.
It is a very real thing called Empty Nest Syndrome.
I admit that I struggled with this evil mixture for many weeks before I came to the conclusion that I was not living my life in a way that would be pleasing to God.
In fact I was grieving the loss of a child who was not even gone. I was grieving the loss of the child I had invented in my own mind instead of rejoicing in the fact that we had raised a young adult who was brave and eager to take on a world that many their age are not ready to face.
I should add that they are far from perfect, although well on their way. I am sure I will have to live the next chapter of my story with them with my eyes half shut, so as not to freak out over every mistake I can see coming a mile away.
The truth is that what we have done as parents is raise very independent young adults and that’s not a negative thing. In fact I believe it will become a great thing. But in the meantime I was not at all prepared to just take a back seat after spending so much time trying to sit in the drivers seat. It was very difficult for me to wake up day after day and not see them each morning.
As I have entered this new unknown territory, I am learning what it means to be the mom in a whole new way to very strong young adults.
My role has changed once again just when I was settling into the role of the parent of a teenager. This is all so new to me and I feel as though each time I enter a new season in parenting they get to experience all of my mistakes. But I know God allows us to make mistakes so he can step in and show us just how big he is, when He turns our mistakes into something beautiful.
The empty nest is really just another chance for me to grow.
If you have ever dealt with this I just wanted to let you know that you are not alone.