It’s Official-I’m An Empty Nester

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Michael officially graduated from college May 9th. Unfortunately there was no fan fare or ceremony at this point due to Covid. His official ceremony was postponed and will be held in December (hopefully). A week later he moved into an apartment with two friends.

Nick is still away at his rental in his college town. He’ll be starting his senior year of college in August. I doubt this one will ever return home to live, although his momma would love it and he would be welcome if he chose to do so. Hint Hint.

So there you have it….this means I’m officially an empty nester. It’s not been as bad as I expected. Of course Michael is only about 15 minutes away and he’s had to return for a few things so it’s not like I don’t see him anymore. It occurred to me that first night that this is the first time I’ve ever lived alone. I went from my parents home to a college dorm (briefly), then back home for a bit, then I married my husband and then I’ve had the boys.

So here’s a few observations from the last couple weeks.

The Good

My condo is suddenly not so tiny. I basically have two extra rooms now since Michael had commandeered Nick’s bedroom and turned it into his gaming room. I plan on turning one into an office space for myself. The other I’ll turn back into a spare bedroom for when Nick does come home on school breaks.

My expenses should drop. Groceries will be less and utilities too maybe.

If I buy an apple pie…it’s all mine!!

The Bad

I fell the other day. It was one of those stupid things where I just wasn’t being careful and I went down hard. I laid on the floor for several minutes trying to decide if anything was broken (on me, not the condo). As I decided I was probably okay, I started laughing as I realized I might need to ask the boys to get me one of those medical alert bracelets. Somehow I thought I’d be 76, not 46 before I would need one of those.

Along the same lines, I am going to have some minor surgery next week. Not a big deal but I’ll probably need someone here for a couple days to help me out with the cat. 

It’s easy to neglect decent eating habits. Not that I’ve ever been a great cook but when it’s just yourself, it’s much easier to just eat a bowl of cereal for supper then actually fix a real meal. On second thought, maybe I should put this in the good category since I could stand to lose a few pounds.

If the house is dirty now…it’s my fault.

I think it might be easy to become a workaholic since there’s no one at home waiting on me.

What’s Next

So, I mentioned being an workaholic is on my bad list. I’m determined not to become one, but the next few weeks will involve a lot of work. It’s a busy season at work anyway and I will probably have to be off at least a few days with my surgery. Also, this current Covid crisis has thrown a wrench into our neighborhood pool opening. Our state government has not set the guidelines yet that we need to follow to open it safely and let me just tell you that people are losing their minds. We are going to have to jump through all types of hoops to safely open this. Oh, and did I mention we have to finalize our fiscal budget by the end of the month??

I want to get my house totally cleaned and organized. There isn’t a lot of extra money right now since I hadn’t planned on this surgery this year (or it’s subsequent costs).  I definitely have plans to get my two “new” rooms put together as economically as possible though.

Focus on me! Which, of course, means focus on my writing. I have learned through this Covid-19 crisis and its subsequent closings, that I write best when I am not at home. Barnes and Noble and our library are my go-to spots to write. Unfortunately, they are not going to be open anytime soon, at least not in the capacity that I need. This is a mental block of mine for some reason so I’m hoping I can fix a cute little office spot for me that I love that will encourage me to write there.

The empty nest is something I’ve really dreaded as a single parent. You don’t have that spouse to lean on when you’re missing the kids. Luckily both my boys are really good about calling me often and keeping me updated on their lives. Thankfully with some busy weeks ahead me, I won’t have time to dwell on my new status. Here’s to looking to the future and this next phase in life.

Any advice for me?


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