I woke up today and realized that it has been one full month since I became an Empty Nester.
Wow, it’s hard to believe how quickly time marches on!! That said, this first month has been filled with making it through the holidays (alone).
As I sat this morning doing some reflection, I came up with a quick list of what I am discovering having an empty nest.
1. The bathroom is always clean! No longer do I have to go in and clean up after showers or nag for the kids to go back and do it themselves. When people visit, I don’t have to panic about what crusty object they are going to find on the bathroom sink.
2. Menu Options have increased … Significantly, and guess what? Every meal that I have made has been enjoyed without complaint (super cool)!
3. I have a new awareness of self-care. Taking care of me has become a priority. I have started doing that on a daily basis. I’ve even started doing yoga a couple time a week!!
4. People just stopping by is no longer a reason to have an anxiety attack! Because there is no mess… that’s a great feeling. I don’t find bits and pieces of trash stuffed in the sofa cushions or the plants because someone was a little to lazy to walk all the way to the trash can. I feel like I’m living in a show home, or as a complete bachelor! I LIKE IT!!
5. I was asked to go for a drink at 9:30 on Saturday night — and I went!! It has been YEARS since I have had the freedom to just up and take off to do something fun for me on a whim. Similarly, I enjoyed a fun childless weekend with my mom and sisters shopping, visiting and just hanging out. These are all new experiences for me.
6. The laundry doesn’t pile up! I don’t spend time having to wash things that just got tossed on the floor because they didn’t feel the need to put them away!
7. I can clean my kitchen after a meal in less than 5 minutes! Although it does seem funny to only run the dishwasher once a week or so instead of almost daily. It’s almost not worth using the dishwasher. BUT I will persevere! LOL
8. No more alarm clocks and school schedules. It is really nice not having to wake up everyday to the sound of an alarm so that I can get kids up and off to school. It’s the most fun so far on super cold days, when I can just enjoy an extra cup of coffee looking outside at the snow and being grateful that I am in!
9. No Nagging, Whining and Fighting – I always get my own way!!! Enough said 😉
10. The Freedom to Discover ME Again. Probably the most important thing is having the time, energy and focus to discover what it is I enjoy doing, without having to check in with anyone to make sure that it’s okay.
Now, don’t get me wrong… Of course I miss the kids, some days more than others and I do get huge waves of loneliness and sadness. But, this is the next step in the journey we call life. It is a step that I have been mentally preparing myself for, and it is a step that I was ready and wanting.
I love the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, and I think The Empty Nesters will come in handy over the next little while. That’s my link in case you would also like to grab a copy.
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