Learning to Fly

We often talk about children leaving the nest, but we don’t talk about what happens to parents as their nest empties.

This last year has been a real eye-opener. My daughter is experiencing her freshman year at college, and though my son still lives at home, between his school schedule and two jobs he is rarely home. I thought I was going to be ready for this. I thought with some planning and forethought I could make the transition easier. In some ways I think I did. But I wasn’t prepared for the reality of it.

1. I was all ready to go back to work.

Great idea. Not so fulfilling in the execution. There were two really good prospects with decent pay and reasonable work demands. One fell apart after the second interview. It was so disheartening, I had such a great vibe about the job and the staff. Still not sure what happened with the other job. I went for some on the job training, and the next thing I knew, the employer was advertising to fill the same position again. No input, no “Thanks, but this isn’t working”, no response to my emails.

I’m still on the hunt. Wish me luck.

2. I really love the quiet.

This shouldn’t have surprised me, but I really love how peaceful it feels around the house. After the breakneck pace of last year and the attending chaos, I guess I needed the break. Now I write, I paint, I job hunt. I take long walks again. Maybe if I push myself a little harder I could start running again. I think I might enjoy that.

3. I want ME back.

Honestly, I’m not sure who exactly I am anymore, but I’m feeling excited to find out. I hadn’t realized how wrapped up I had become in my family and all of their doings until I was here alone with myself. I don’t regret that. I’ve learned so much about living and loving, sacrifice and joy. Now I need to integrate that knowledge, mull it over, decide what I want in my life and what isn’t important anymore.

I feel a new freedom. I feel restless and alive. I want to fly.