Adjusting to the empty nest

My husband and I recently came back from a trip to Vancouver to settle our youngest son into his new apartment, and soon we’ll be traveling to the East coast to visit our middle son and his wife, whom I haven’t seen for almost a year.

I’m so proud of all three of my boys; they’ve grown up to be independent, resourceful and caring young men.  What mother could ask for more?  Me, if I could ask for more, I’d ask for them to stay forever within a five-minute trip from my house.  But if that were the case, they likely wouldn’t be quite the independent young men I’m so proud of, following their dreams wherever they may take them.  Even if that happens to be the other side of this very large country!!

I know in my head, it would be selfish of the mama hen to want to keep the little chicks forever in the local coop.  And I confess, there are times when I miss them so desperately, my heart longs to be selfish, I want to be able to see them and hug them, enjoy them, whenever the whim hits me.  And I worry that I may cling too tightly to my son and his beautiful family who do still live close to home.  So I might tend to sway in the opposite direction, denying myself the pleasure of their company, in fear of imposing.

I’m sure I’m not the only mother out there who does a balancing act of wanting her children close by, yet knowing the best thing for them is to give them that gentle push out of the nest and watch them soar to new heights on their own.  That’s my job, and I take solace in knowing I did it well.  If only the right thing wasn’t also the hardest thing.


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