Untethered In My Mini Empty Nest

This week my two older kids went to sleepaways with their school classes.  The way it worked out, they swapped equally in the middle of the week.  This left me with an entire week of two children.  Not always the same two children, mind you, but two children instead of three just the same.  

Of course the load is a little lighter:  it’s much easier to get two kids ready for school; drive two kids to afterschool activities; put two kids to bed; help two kids with homework…etc..

However, I felt off balance.  I really missed whichever kid was missing.  Each is a character in the story of our family and, therefore, each plays a specific role in balancing our lives.  When you are missing one of your main characters, the story is incomplete.  It is less rich in an obvious way, but in a subtle ways, too.

I fast forwarded ahead in my mind when it’s just our youngest going off to camp. The other two older children will be out of the house by then, I think.  When she is away, there will be no deadlines for school starting and finishing.  There will be no activities to keep me tethered to a schedule.  I will be wandering around, untethered.  

I’ll be a balloon without a string to tie me or hold me down.  I will be floating, free, both happy and sad.  I can sleep in, see a movie, go get a facial, spend ten continuous hours blogging without guilt–whatever I want. Yet I will be lonely and missing my last main character in the story of my children’s childhood.  

Darn.  Things keep changing.  Luckily, I have a long, long time before that happens.  Right?

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